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North Korea-created 'Red Star' Linux adopts OS X look and feel

updated 11:33 pm EST, Mon February 3, 2014

'New' look replaces Windows 7-inspired desktop in previous version

While it continues to dominate the vast majority of worldwide, there is a sense that both consumers and industry are moving slowly away from Windows software as alternatives -- primarily Apple's OS X and iOS -- gain more mainstream attention. This drift seems to be embodied in the latest release of "Red Star OS," a Linux variant developed for the last decade by North Korea as a state-sanctioned OS. In a bold move, version 3 has adopted a directly OS X-like look, dropping the previous Windows 7 stylings.

The screenshots of Red Star OS 3.0, which appears to have been released about six months ago, come from a computer scientist named Will Scott, who recently taught at the Pyongyang University of Science and Technology. The OS was bought from the Korea Computer Center and the home of development for Red Star Linux. North Korea doesn't widely allow its citizens Internet access, but universities and other public institutions have access to a nationwide, state-controlled intranet that focuses on domestic sites, educational materials and government propaganda.

According to Computerworld, the Linux variant features a copy of Wine for running Windows applications. It also includes a web browser based on Mozilla that is called "Naenara," which translates to "My country."

by MacNN Staff



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