M3 Operating System Development

A chronicle of the development of the M3 operating system

What’s in a Name – M3

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I thought I’d take a bit of time to explain where the name M3 comes from, just in case anyone is curious.

I first became interested in OS design and development about twelve years ago, in 1997. Being a recent graduate of college, a newlywed, and just plain young, I got the idea that I could write my own OS. Call it youthful optimism, call it hubris, call it insanity if you want, but that was my thinking at the time.

Of course, one of the most important things that one must do when writing an OS is to come up with a good name. A good name is way more important than, say, actual code. One trend at the time was to incorporate the suffix “ix” or “ux” to the name of your OS, if it in any way resembled or derived from Unix. Another trend was to work the letters “os” into the name, such as BeOS, or FreeDOS. I wanted to cut my own path, and stay away from such trends. I was a rebel, a renegade, a trailblazer.

In 1997, the new millennium was starting to come into view. Seeing as I was setting off to build an operating system that would serve as a platform for the new millenium, nay, the platform for the new millenium, I wanted to capture that idea in the name. After kicking around names like MilleniOS and Milleniux, I settled on the simple yet solid M3.

M3 – the operating system for the third millenium.

Well, M3 didn’t really get too far down the path to development back in 1997, but when I decided to restart my efforts in 2009, I kept the name. Seeing as we’re not too far into the 3rd millennium, it’s still applicable. Besides, I can’t think of anything better.

Plus, there’s all sorts of clever things that I could do to play off the name, if I were a clever marketer. M3 could be three things that start with M, such as Modular Modern Microkernel, or Multitasking Modular Microkernel, or well, you get the idea. But before I get clever with the marketing, I’d like to have a working product. Otherwise, M3 will just be another word for vaporware.


Written by m3os

March 23, 2009 at 12:44 pm

Posted in Personal

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