I forgot in my previous posting to use the 'F' word, as seems to be 'de rigueur' in this forum. So I will tell you this. A Canadian film, financed by their government (controversy followed). Downloadable, fully titled 'Young People Fucking'. And, it's NOT porn! Just honest and very, very funny.
Back to Google. My first job was on a Burroughs B7600 machine, with mechanical tabs. (Could be wrong about the model number). 256 BYTES.
With overlays depending on the choice loaded in, I managed to have a complete inventory system for a 3 location car dealership in NZ. '72 I think.
PDP8's, 11's, IBM 370's for other jobs. Vic 20's and Commore 64's. Amiga's, Lisa, etc, etc (my favorite poolside computer is still my Atari Portfolio)
This is all getting way out of hand. MS sux. Apple I still like (still have the first one with the signatures inside the case), but MS generates my income. My IBook G4 1.2 that my daughter gave me when her friend was quoted $700 to fix, so was going to ditch - I opened it up, put the drive cable back into its socket, reformatted, added a nupower battery (6 - yes 6 hours). Truck'in again.
Linux, in all of it's flavors (Ubunto best yet, though) still SUX for end-users.
Actually, it was an Ubunto boot CD for Mac that showed me the IBook was alive.
My decision: Mac IBook. Turn it on, finds the nearest free wireless connection wherever I am, or tells me none available.....and that's where Google as an 'OS' fails. We seem to be looping here... back to the old days of 'dumb client' computing. The console needing to be connected to some net.
At the mercy of often incompentent developers.
So, that's why end users 'sneaked' PC's into their offices. Once I was employed for 'a few weeks' by an end user, by-passing their IT Department. I forget the name of the system (SQL based) that IT was working on for development. In the end, I stayed at that Fortune 500 company for 2 years, expanding my system (using good old FoxPro with Rushmore) until the point when it accomplished not only the needs of the department that originally had me come in 'under the radar', but also all of the other departments that were waiting on the (SYBASE????) project to be completed.
In the end, my FoxPro system, 15+ years later, is still being used, and is FAST with todays RAID servers. The Sybase (or whatever) project failed, and was cancelled)
KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) has gone astray. I cringe now if I have to do a VFP project. MSuck bought FoxPro to kill it in favor of Access. Their marketing was so good that many CEO's (or CTO's, etc) DEMANDED that I convert my systems to Access. I refused. Now, many have sent me letters saying 'thank you', when they had other projects created using Access. I could quote, but I will not. Tests using ODBC to SQL instead of basic Rushmore based VFP or FP tables suck in comparison. Unfortunately, a VFP or FP table is limited to 2G.
I have several systems that run 24/7 without any errors. Simplistic, but elegant, interfaces - easy to understand, easy to navigate. That is the most challenging part of systems design. Now operating world wide using Citrix (as I planned for originally). When I went to change the background screen colors after the first implementation, I had a revolt, so had to back off.
I find it much easier to use my own code, whether it be assembly (for the machine), Cobol (cringe), Basic (ditto) and its flavors, Pascal (+ Delphi), Fortran, PL1, Cxxxx, FP (easy) VFP (complicated beyond after the MSx purchase), or whatever (there are at least 2500 different languages), than try to use the so called 'reusable' classes or objects'. Cut and paste is SOOO much easier.
I may be an old fogey, but I bet'ya I can turn out usable and bug free code in 1/8th of the time that today's graduates could.
In conclusion, we will enter a phase where PC's are just dumb terminals to mainframes again (aka now known as server clusters), and the first time that the company you are depending on goes 'down', or fails completely, we will come back to local PC usuage. Google or MS remote out the door!.
But please remember to back-up the important stuff to other drives on your local network, and at least two outside 'net sites. MS has done well in that regard, as has AOL's Xdrive (although I don't trust it).