Google has now moved their "Picasa" image organizer to Linux. What does this mean? Well, it is a small step in many directions. It proves that Linux is becoming a major competitor in the operating system game, and big companies are starting to realize this. It also means that, in one more way, people can more easily migrate from Windows to Linux.
My mom is one of those people who get comfortable with something (Like an OS or software suite) and don't want to change, only because she doesn't know enough about stuff to migrate without a big effort. Things like Picasa (Which she has been using for about a year now) being on multiple OSs allows her to change without having to learn something new. On top of that, Linux did need a good image organization tool, one of the few things I have felt like it was missing.
I have not yet tried it, but looking at the site, it seems to use its own version of Wine, which comes with the installer (the installer comes in .deb, .rpm, and .bin formats). So it is not really a port, but rather the same Windows client. I have not yet seen how it performs, but I plan on it when I get home.
A small bit about why I like Google: Google is really pushing open sourced software forward, although they have not released any of their own open sourced software, they help to fund many open sourced projects, and contribute to it in many ways. They help fund the Ubuntucon after Debcon. They have been helping Wine, mostly in their own interests though (Getting Picasa to work on Linux, without having to remake it). They are helping to push Jabber, the open sourced, open standard and cross platform instant messenger that allows you to run your own server, and communicate with others on another server. They also give you all the info you might need to make clients for almost all of their services. I have played around with the Maps API, and I added onto my companies website a nice little embedded Google map. It allows you to zoom and move around, giving you a good look at the area, and also has a pen point at our office location, which, when clicked, will bring up maps.google.com with our address filled in on the ending designation. This was all very easy to do, next to no effort on my side, just some basic java script. Not quite open sourced, but open ended.
Everyday I see something new with Linux. Something that brings it one step closer to being on the average mans desktop. The biggest hurdle right now is getting 3rd party developers to make cross platform programs, games, and drivers. When this happens, Microsoft will lose its grip, and will rapidly start losing market share to Linux(and probably mac...)
[edit reason="Found added info"]
I was wrong, Google is pushing open sourced and doing some themselves.
May 26 2006, 7:45 am (Edited on May 26 2006, 7:53 am)