Jolicloud is a version of linux that is designed for the computers designed to stay connected – netbooks. They have recently release version 1.1 of their operating system so I decided to take another look. I immediately saw major visual changes from what I experienced when I fooled around with the pre-release v0.9. What makes Jolicloud different from other versions of linux is that it is based around the cloud as is geared towards non-technical users.
Having only played around in linux for brief periods of time I found it to have an extremely steep learning curve. Jolicloud completely eliminates this.
Jolicloud is basically an application launcher that sits in front of the typical linux desktop. That way when you log in you are presented with a set of icons for your applications in a format that upon first glance resembles an iPhone.
I have gone through the process of installing applications in linux and have run into many issues due to my lack of experience. However, in Jolicloud, the process of adding applications could not be simpler. You just press the big green Add application button and you are presented with all the applications (over 700). This list of available applications is not only sorted into categories so you can browser, but it is also completely searchable. You just click Add next the the application(s) you want and they get downloaded and installed for you.
One of the features that Jolicloud prides itself on is its cloud storage abilities. What this means for a user is that when they add an application on 1 computer, that application is also automatically synced and added to any other computer that you log into with your Jolicloud account. That means you will no longer have to worry about installing all of your programs when you switch/transfer computers.
The major focus of jolicloud is staying connected and to me it feels similar to Boxee. You can follow your friends and you can see streams of information from them about things like what applications they recommend or what they have recently installed.
You may be thinking, what good is syncing and cloud storage if I only want to run this OS on my single netbook or laptop. But recently Jolicloud has come out with a Chrome extension, allowing you to access all your files and applications from anywhere, using your Chrome browser.