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Is it even possible? I mean, I like the idea of the Chromebook and obviously if I didn't like Google I wouldn't be getting one, but what if I need to do something on it that Google doesn't have an app for (and there isn't a browser version)? Is it possible to install a non-Google app?
 

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Right now i don't think it's possible since the Chrome book is still new and people looking to make third-party chromebook apps are about to or already starting making chromebook apps.

So really, it is possible, all a matter of time.

It will be very much like iPhone & the third-party apps available for it.
 

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Good info! I was wondering about this as well, and about what sort of apps would be available on a chromebook. Glad I found this thread!
 

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There's also a Chrome browser extension to run Mozilla web apps; https://apps.mozillalabs.com/.

In theory you should be able to run any well behaved web app that doesn't require local resources. I'm not sure if this means Microsoft Office Web Apps will run (I was going to try the demo but it requires an MS Live ID account and I didn't feel like doing that). From what I've seen so far both Google Docs and MS Office Web Apps have some way to go to match the traditional MS Office apps but with MS going towards a JavaScript | CSS3 | html5 desktop for Windows 8 there will probably be a lot of effort focussed on web apps.

The bottom line is that this is the route that corporate IT is going to go. If there isn't an app for what you need there may soon be one. Not to say there won't still be a market for super workstations and laptops for CPU intensive tasks but the majority of our work is going to be done on the cloud.

IMHO
 

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This did not even cross my mind but I am sure it would have at some point. I am not to worried though, a year from now I am sure there will be all kinds of options.
 

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So you think this is the wave of the future? Everything online and nothing local? I'm not sure I like that idea. It definitely will redefine "privacy" if that happens!
 

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So you think this is the wave of the future? Everything online and nothing local? I'm not sure I like that idea. It definitely will redefine "privacy" if that happens!
Just because something is stored on the Cloud doesn't mean it is public. I wouldn't trust facebook with any sensitive information but that doesn't mean Dropbox or Google Docs aren't secure places to keep things private. As part of my work I help customers deploy systems into the cloud that have to handle private data securely all the time.

You could regard a local computer - particularly a portable one - as vulnerable. It can be stolen, if it isn't updated frequently or properly firewalled it can be hacked. Just because the data is physically close to you does not always mean it is protected to a higher standard. I'd trust the cloud with my family photos far more than a local computer, as if my disk fails that's a few decades of memories lost*

If you've ever bought anything online then you probably already trust some internet systems enough to let them charge you.

I'm not disagreeing here, you're right - privacy is a concern. I'm just pointing out that privacy != cloud.

A key concern for me is actually fragmentation. Instead of keeping my files on my computer, they are spread around various sites - Google Docs, Dropbox, Picasa, Pivotaltracker, lovelycharts, liquidplanner, etc. Getting them all to talk to work together in the ways that are important for me might be an issue.

*assuming the backups were lost too, natch.
 

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I think you are absolutely right! This is the future. But I do wonder what it means for privacy laws and people (older generations) claiming that anything "online" is public record or information. I agree with you statement about credit card usage and have used that in combatting these old ideals in conversations at work and home.

Storing information on the web is no different than storing it in your home. It still belongs to you and you have the right to you privacy and security.
 
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