There is always a backlash against anyone calling anything the Web OS, mainly because, as folks point out quite accurately, the term “operating system” technically applies to the stack on top of PC hardware that interfaces between that hardware and a user’s intentions.
Here’s an example of what I mean – A Web OS? Are You Dense? In this story, the author, who I don’t know but I certainly do respect, gives Arrington a ton of shit for “not knowing anything about computers.” Well, color me dense because, yes, in fact, there is a Web OS, and it will be built on top of the Windows/Mac/PC OS, and that’s just fine with me, because I could care less about technical purist theories of what an OS is. I don’t care if it’s built on top of Windows, which is a “classic OS”. In fact, Windows, as I recall, was built on top of DOS for most of its career, so what does that make Windows? Not an OS? And DOS was built on top of some arcane machine language, I am sure. And we can keep dancing on the head of definitional pins, but to me….
To me, operating systems are computer-mediated realities that help us get stuff done. And to my mind, that makes Chrome an OS. A system that lets me operate sh*t. End of story.