Quoting from their website:
"Haiku is a new open-source operating system that specifically targets personal computing. Inspired by the BeOS, Haiku is fast, simple to use, easy to learn and yet very powerful."
Being an alternative operating systems enthusiast I've been discovering this amazing reimplementation of the beloved BeOS, which sadly died before letting the whole world know how good it was.
For those who don't know about BeOS, it was really ahead of its time. One of their goals was to excel in rich multimedia processing, much like Mac OS. People using BeOS during the 90's were able to use low spec hardware to open several audio and video files simultaneously without noticeable performance degradation, whereas the other operating systems of that time would struggle even with better hardware.
Haiku is still an alpha release so don't expect everything to work smoothly. Having said that, I'm using it as my main operating system on a laptop! In fact, I'm so thrilled that I'm helping the community by providing bug reports as well as translating the system locale and user guide. When I use Haiku I get the feeling of a lightweight Mac OS since the GUI still looks from the 90's (though it features subtle nice improvements). There's also the ubiquitous Bash shell, thus even Linux/UNIX fans will feel somewhat at home.
Here's what I love the most about Haiku: