The computer may become the network in Google's NaCl

Google has a cool new technology that could render "desktop computing" obsolete.

Google's Native Client (NaCl), a new open-source project from the Internet giant, promises to completely upend traditional desktop computing. While still early in its development, NaCl could well bring processing power to the cloud in such a way that even the most demanding of desktop applications could be run over the Web, as InformationWeek suggests.

NaCl is a bit like Microsoft's ActiveX, but promises greater security. It's a way of leverages local computing power, so that Web applications can leverage both bandwidth speed and CPU speed to deliver a desktop-like experience that should exceed said experience by combining the best of cloud services with local horsepower.

It's an exciting proposition, one that should strike fear into the hearts of corporations that depend upon locally-installed software. They simply won't be able to compete with the ease of support, deployment, and on-the-fly innovation that Web software provides.

Tech Culture
About the author

    Matt Asay is chief operating officer at Canonical, the company behind the Ubuntu Linux operating system. Prior to Canonical, Matt was general manager of the Americas division and vice president of business development at Alfresco, an open-source applications company. Matt brings a decade of in-the-trenches open-source business and legal experience to The Open Road, with an emphasis on emerging open-source business strategies and opportunities. He is a member of the CNET Blog Network and is not an employee of CNET. You can follow Matt on Twitter @mjasay.


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