Google's announcement about the Chrome OS raises a whole lotta questions about the future of the operating systems market, or what an operating system really is, or how the Chrome OS fits into Google's larger strategy. As interesting as these questions may be, we also have very little foundation on which to answer them.

I have a much longer post here about the reasons why we can't reach any conclusions yet. Here's the short version:

  • Netbooks, which play a significant role in the prospects for Chrome OS, can be both a blessing and a curse.

  • You could say the same thing about the degree to which the Chrome OS depends on the Chrome browser.

  • Users may not see the compelling reasons to use this new platform, or even understand it fully.

  • Governments may not be thrilled about the implications for competition and privacy.

  • There's still a lot of murkiness about cloud computing in general that this does nothing to dispel.

  • Serious technical challenges lie ahead.