“Haiku, the open-source successor to the late and lamented BeOS — that late, lamented operating system of the 1990s developed at Apple refugee Jean-Louis Gassée’s Be Inc. BeOS was intended to compete with the ‘classic’ Apple MacOS and with Microsoft Windows; by 1996, Gassée was jockeying to get Apple to acquire his company and make BeOS the basis of the next-generation Macintosh operating system,” Sean Gallagher writes for Ars Technica. “But then along came some guy named Steve Jobs, with a company called NeXT. And the rest, as they say, is history. Be Inc. was eventually acquired by another doomed company (Palm) and dissolved.”

“Haiku (initially “OpenBeOS,” but changed because of copyright assertions by Palm) was launched in 2001 to create an operating system that was binary-compatible with applications written for the ill-fated BeOS. It uses the same C++ API as BeOS, but it is a re-implementation of that API, so it shares virtually none of the code of the original BeOS,” Gallagher writes. “As it has evolved, Haiku has taken two diverging roads: a 32-bit version that retains backward compatibility, and a 64-bit version that is more forward-looking but breaks backward compatibility because of compiler issues. That’s because the 32-bit version, like BeOS before it, is based on Gnu Compiler Collection (GCC) 2.”

Gallagher writes, “Neither of these paths have yet resulted in an operating system that could be considered ready for release.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: They should’ve named it “Quixotic.” And beauty is obviously in the eye of the beholder.

Jean-Louis Gassée: Thank God Apple chose Steve Jobs’s NeXT over my BeOS – November 11, 2011
BeOS reborn as ‘Haiku’ operating system – September 15, 2009