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Cloud computing with the Android Linux software stack

Mar 18, 2009, 21:02 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Bill Zimmerly)

[ Thanks to An Anonymous Reader for this link. ]

"First and foremost, Android is a software stack for mobile devices. This means that high on the list of priorities is the preservation of battery power and the efficient management of limited memory resources. There are five distinct layers to the Android system stack:

"The Acorn RISC Machine (ARM) Linux core forms the solid base upon which all the other layers stand. Linux is a proven technology that is highly reliable, and the ARM processor family is known for high performance on very low power requirements.

"The libraries provide the reusable and sharable low-level code for basic functions such as codecs — software for coding and decoding digital sound and video — functions for the presentation of rich graphics on a small displays, secure shell support for encrypted TCP/IP traffic into the cloud, as well as component support for Web browsing (WebKit), SQL database functionality (SQLite), and standard C library functionality you would expect in a Linux system.

"The Dalvik run-time byte-code interpreter, which strongly resembles the Java language byte-code interpreter, adds a few distinct features that uniquely define the security and power-preserving model of Android. Every application currently running, for example, has its own user ID and its own copy of the interpreter running to strictly separate processes for security and reliability.

"The open source Android operating system has allowed for sophisticated Cloud Computing applications to run wherever you are. Designed to be highly efficient on battery-powered devices like the T-Mobile G1 smartphone, at heart, Android is Linux.

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