No, it's not all over. Since all the original BeOS code was bought by Palm, which has no intention of releasing it to third parties or using it for a desktop system, several independent open source projects were born that seek to recreate the magic of BeOS, some starting from scratch , others by recycling existing material (for example a fork of the Atheos project, which uses the linux kernel). The problem of all these projects is the following: how long will it take to be able to have a fully functional BeOS clone? Given the development model purely amateur of these activities, there are no deadlines and even certainties that the goal will never be achieved.
Perhaps for this reason, the greatest hopes are placed in Zeta, the next announced version of BeOS. Explanation: before the sale to Palm, a small German company (www.Yellowtab.com) had bought BeOS distribution rights from Be, and has been working for over a year to prepare what should be, in fact, the return to the scene of the creature of Jean Louis Gassee.
But the real question if it still makes sense to re-propose BeOS today as it was 3 years ago, the real strength of this system was its independence from the past, its innovativeness.
So here is the announcement of Sequel in these days: Xentronix (www.xentronix.com) has brought together a small group of well-known names in the Be-environment to try to develop a new operating system that is inspired by the spirit of BeOS, without wanting to force to recreate its shape. The Sequel project is strictly closed source, as the protagonists believe that this model can guarantee, at least initially, greater consistency and speed of development, but all possible documentation will be provided to third parties.
The kernel will be based on "something pre-existing, although significant alterations will be introduced to make it more similar to Be's way of doing things." Which, translated, means that we will rely on Linux or FreeBSD, but we will try to work to hide as much as possible the difficulties that arise from this choice, just like Apple did for MacOS X.
Currently the kernel boot from floppy and has a simple shell worked. (By Marco Centofanti)