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To Every Operating System ...

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It was an exciting year on the operating system beat, with prominent new releases for every season.

While the proliferation of platform options we've seen this year has made the OS landscape more complicated, this diversity is spurring competition and much-needed innovation.

Fortunately, most of the vendors and projects that made this year so interesting have seized upon openness in the form of free and open-source software-or, failing that, of open standards-as a method for balancing diversity and innovation while maintaining an important layer of compatibility.

As TV's favorite ex-convict might remark, it's a good thing-after all, there's far too much room for improvement in operating systems to leave ourselves parked at 1 [insert vendor name here] Way.

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