Technology is increasingly influencing day-to-day items, from smart watches and appliances to powerful new functionality in cars and homes. The so-called “Internet of Things” is constantly evolving and changing, adapting new ways to ease and enhance everyday life. Unfortunately, however, many of the new items utilizing these recent technological developments,common items which until recently did not have a “smart” functionality, are not compatible with existing computer operating systems, or are not able to function at their best with these systems. Google, recently changed to Alphabet (GOOG) is aiming to change that with one of its latest projects, the new operating system Fuchsia.
A New Kernel for New Technology
Operating systems make use of kernels, key core programs that control all other computer operations. Many of these kernels are based on Linux, and technology companies have adapted older Linux kernels for use in new computers and smart devices for years. In some cases, new devices might utilize kernels modified only slightly since they were first developed two decades ago.
In order to create a new operating system, Google has decided to begin with a new kernel. This means that developers will have to build Fuchsia from the most basic levels, starting from the ground up to create an operating system that rivals those currently in use. While this might seem like a lot more trouble than is necessary, especially considering that existing Linux kernels are available, there are a number of reasons for an operating system based on a brand new kernel.
Advantages of Fuchsia
With more and more devices on the market that explore the possibilities of computing and advanced sensors, the need for a single type of operating system has changed in recent years. Oftentimes, older kernels are simply too large and complex for recent smart items, overwhelming the capacity of small microcontroller systems. Beyond that, kernels based on Linux make use of a scheduler function to sort and process tasks, and a greater number of recent smart devices require real-time functions in order to work optimally. This fundamental discrepancy means that the Linux-based operating systems will not allow these devices to work as well as they can.
Though much remains to be seen about Fuchsia, some developers believe that Google is creating this new operating system to marry the functionally efficient elements of a Linux-based system with an OS that is built for today’s smaller computing devices. Creating a new operating system will also help Google to avoid potential run-ins with the Android system, which utilizes a Linux-based kernel for its OS procedures. How Fuchsia will help to improve functionality and pave the way for newer, more efficient smart devices remains to be seen, but it appears that Google is making a move in that direction.