Looking at the picture below you'll see three calculator windows: a Windows XP version, one for Linux and one for OS X.
The applications run on OS X. Well, they don't run on OS X. They are displayed on a computer running OS X. The actual applications (including the OS X calculator) run on a server somewhere on an off-site location.
Sun Microsystems unveiled the technology dubbed Project Chameleon at its Sun Labs Day last week in Mountain View, CA. It is the first time that applications are delivered to a remote desktop in their own windows. Alternative solutions such as VNC present the user with an entire desktop. Or the application is delivered in a browser window. Chameleon is a more elegant way of delivering applications through an application service provider (ASP) model.
The technology paves the way for software to be made available as a true rental service. Think getting you text editor or photo editing software through you DSL provider– and let them worry about updating and patching.
The technology requires a small java based application on the client and a special server application. But the original software remains untouched – up to and including the graphical appearance of the window itself, as the demo showed.
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