= O =
OS/2 /O S too/ n.
The anointed successor to MS-DOS
for Intel 286- and 386-based micros; proof that IBM/Microsoft
couldn't get it right the second time, either. Often called
`Half-an-OS'. Mentioning it is usually good for a cheap laugh
among hackers -- the design was so baroque, and the
implementation of 1.x so bad, that 3 years after introduction you
could still count the major apps shipping for it on the
fingers of two hands -- in unary. The 2.x versions were said to
have improved somewhat, and informed hackers rated them superior to
Microsoft Windows (an endorsement which, however, could easily be
construed as damning with faint praise). In the mid-1990s IBM put
OS/2 on life support, refraining from killing it outright purely
for internal political reasons; by 1999 the success of Linux
had effectively ended any possibility of a renaissance. See
monstrosity, cretinous, second-system effect.
--The Jargon File version 4.3.1, ed. ESR, autonoded by rescdsk.