Last year Nokia and Intel announced that they would collaborate on several projects; but at the time, neither offered much information on what those projects might be. Today we've got a little insight into what the Nokia-Intel partnership is all about: Software.
At the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, the two companies announced a Linux-based operating system called MeeGo. MeeGo is actually just a mash-up of Nokia's Maemo OS and Intel's Moblin. Nokia and Intel have said the open source OS will run on both smartphones and netbooks, with support for ARM architecture and Intel's line of Atom CPUs.
At the moment, there are very few details available but it will be interesting to see how this goes. The OS will more than likely have a better chance on smartphones than netbooks. Microsoft is still dominating the netbook OS market because it has the advantage of familiarity. Still, we can't say much until we see it in action. Watch this space.
Android is another Linux distribution for mobile phones, just like this MeeGo is. It shouldn't be too big of a deal to run MeeGo apps on Android and vice-versa as typically all you would need are the shared library files for whatever window manager you used to write the application, as long as the CPU architecture is the same. It would be analogous to running a KDE program on the Ubuntu- no big deal.
I agree from a techy stand point, but from a marketing standpoint it would better to have one flag for all of the linux operating systems maybe. To the average techy it may not make much of a difference, but to the average user the idea of having a one stop shop for all their apps is very appealing, and right now unfortunately it doesn't seem like anything is on even ground to the iphone app store (from my understanding anyways, I always just hear iphone iphone iphone it seems).
No. The biggest strength of Linux is that it is open and free for people to mess with and mold it to fit what they need. FYI, there is a good deal of compatibility between different distributions due to the Linux Standards Base.