There is lots to criticize about the web as it currently is.

But without it we'd be completely beholden to Apple's App Store and Google Play to share interactive experiences (apps, whatever...) with all the other users of the world.

So unless you only care to cater to the extremely small minority of users who side-load on Android, the web, with all its warts, is the way to go.

Embrace it.


this sounds strangely as if nobody has desktop computers

I guess every loophole I can find for a mobile computer involves using a 'different app' to distribute things for, so the premise remains true.

but I think the actual finding here is 'mobile OSs aren't flexible enough to let you decide what you want to create/view instead of centring everything on applications and making you coerce it into the application's paradigm', 'thus Online Javascript is the only App like that'


like, when you think about it, a web browser really is just another App that allows a whole lot of different things to be run in it

and my thinking is, why does that necessarily have to be online from a server and with Javascript

so what I'm doing as some kind of hobby is trying to aim at getting a lisp machine on android so I can then run the very specific things I want to run in there, much as I could write a Progressive Web App to run in the set of browsers that will run it

(the lisp machine already works great on my desktop computer of course, I just would like it to run on some mobile OSs so I can port programs there.)

@Valenoern Yep the web browser is the general purpose computing platform that the Mobile OS don't want us to have.

We need more options though, so I'm glad you're working on something. Sounds interesting!

@Valenoern yes sure I did not mention desktops. But here's the thing:

- Widely used desktops are probably headed for the same closed model as mobile OS. I lost the reference but I think the new M1 Macs have additional restrictions on what software you can run on them.

- Desktops aren't a replacement for mobile, and mobile is more and more the most common if not only computer users touch routinely.

@teleclimber @Valenoern That's an interesting take. About Apple I know almost nothing, but one major selling point of both Android and Windows is the large amount of software that runs on them. In that respect, Linux would love to be where Windows is today, with all that software and device-support. For Microsoft to throw away that advantage would really cost them. What's their motivation: data-gathering? Security? Governmental pressure? Suppressing rival software houses?

@markusl @Valenoern It's possible MS takes a different approach than Apple. That could be really good. And they might do it. They've already surprised us (or me at least) with WSL for example. They could decide to differentiate from Apple by going the other way, or they'll chicken out and follow Apple because they're scared of being different. It'll probably depend on who is running MS in a few years.

As for motivation it's all about control so they can capture more value and make more 💰

@teleclimber @Valenoern Thanks, Olivier. That's interesting. I can see why a company wanting to offer a better, safer experience than is available on Windows would lock down its machines, but I also see that it makes these machines less free. Individual users can opt into Apple's ecosystem or opt out of it, but the bigger question to me is whether Apple's actions will encourage other platforms to move in a similar direction.

@teleclimber @Valenoern The Web is going the same direction, becoming a closed model run primarily by Google. The only way forward that preserves people's control over their devices is to liberate the whole stack. We give them an inch, they take a mile.

Maybe LineageOS and similar projects can be popularized more. Maybe communities can run more installation programs for phones, laptops, etc. When the community controls the ecosystem, we have a firm foundation to move forward.

@Valenoern "mobile OSs aren't flexible enough"

Yes, this is deliberate on the OS maker's part of course. Make a walled garden and put a cashier at the gate.

We used to buy general purpose computers, now we buy gateways to selected paid/proprietary services. Not good.

We are very lucky the web browser was invented before the mobile device, or it would never be able to take off because it would be kicked off the app store on day 1.

@Valenoern @teleclimber FWIW: the majority of people in the world have a phone but not a desktop/laptop. Even in the western world, the majority of Web use has been on mobile, for years.

@teleclimber I may be working on building my own browser engines to address the issues I see with the web. I do think JS was a mistake.

But for what's readily available to the mainstream, I do agree: The Web's the best of all the bad options.

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