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May 27th 2010 6:15AM I'm a bit late to the party… but I've been playing around with this idea for years... IBM has been working on some aspects of this since the late 90's with their pervasive computing. They were doing some cool stuff at the application level I don't know the current state of the project.
You can almost do this now with the OS. The OS becomes a container which preserves state and connections. This could be a VM if you would extend migrations across filesystems. I've seen demos of mp3 streaming off of a VM which was moved while it was up from one piece of hardware to another and the stream never dropped. Currently it requires a common filesystem, but that might be able to be worked around. If the VM would be running something like Lotus Mobile Connect to abstract the network layer you could keep your tcp/ip connections alive while you move across networks. (incidentally the ability to keep ssh sessions open from one wifi hotspot to the next made Lotus Mobile Connect the coolest VPN software I've ever used) The end result would be an OS which is independent of hardware. This is very expensive in terms of processing and storage resources. Every device has to have greater storage than the OS image and enough processing to handle the virtualization.
Plan 9 is potentially a blend of the OS and application level. At the application level every application would need to know how to pass state. This is really complicated because every application needs to know about every possible destination. Apple could probably do something like move your now playing music from one place to another. Google could do the same with their ecosystem, but as soon as you add in additional vendor the only way would be to standardize an API to handle this at the application level. Given the HTML5 Flash battles...
The other extreme is depend on a speedy network connection and access a common system through the proverbial "dumb terminal" ssh, vnc, rdp etc. etc. I think RDP has the ability to now run applications remotely similar to X11 which are two ways of getting more granularity The upshot of this is that your access devices can be really lightweight, except for a kicking network connection.
As I see it the landscape on one axis is ideological battles, open vs. proprietary, one vs the many and is defined by personal choices, you can choose or roll your own tools and adapt the way you work or push for an industry standard/protocol. On the other axis is technical and physical constraints. Even if within a microcosm such as the the Google or Apple ecosystems you're still going to have to solve the technical problems. If we had unlimited storage on every device, we could replicate our data on everything we use and always the same information on every device. The flip side would be to have a great network connection with high bandwidth and low latency so we could depend on accessing our data remotely. The reality is that as long that we have technical constraints from storage and networks, tradeoffs will have to be made.
Apr 25th 2008 6:22PM If they ever put it into production I'm sure bombardier will sue them. http://www.forbes.com/2003/11/04/cx_dl_1104vow.html
Apr 4th 2008 11:04PM I'm curious to know why you think Amtrak is "ailing." Ridership has increased every year for the past 7 and I've already not gotten a ticket because they've been sold out. Y'all even posted on it. http://www.gadling.com/2006/12/04/more-people-traveling-with-amtrak
Jul 9th 2007 3:12PM Interestingly enough it would have been bigger except the funeral home next door wouldn't sell, and one of the few Ethiopian restaurants in the area was closed so it could be built.
Jan 23rd 2007 12:56PM Well I didn't score very well. However, I'm going to be defensive about it. I didn't score well because many of the places I've been to aren't on the list. Anybody who tries to avoid touristy destinations won't do so hot either. Unless you count layovers.
Oct 26th 2006 5:25PM I like the Qat spelling which is certainly more helpful in Scrabble. I've been to Djibouti, it's more than just the Qat gives this article gives it credit for.
Mar 27th 2006 1:05PM I haven't floated in the dead sea, but Lake Asal in Djibouti which I have been too actually has a higher saline content than the dead sea. It's truely bizarre because you're legs start to not want to stay on the bottom as you walk into deeper water. It makes your skin crawl after a bit though.
Feb 13th 2006 9:55AM I've been there. It is a for lack of a better word interesting. I wrote a bit about my experience here. http://www.char1es.net/archives/2005/11/there_and_back.html
Another Important destination there is Lake Asal, the most saline body of water in the world. There is indeed some great diving although local's don't like to have their picture taken, so that can make photography a little awkward. I ended up leaving my camera in my room except when I was traveling outside of the Djibouti town.