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Google secretly reveals new browser project: Google Chrome


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Google secretly reveals new browser project: Google Chrome
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Brad
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Old 2008-09-01, 15:05

Anyone else read this comic book-style "announcement" of Google Chrome?

http://blogoscoped.com/google-chrome/

I find it rather curious (but somehow fitting) that there hasn't been any other public statement about this and that the http://www.google.com/chrome URL is 404. Way to go viral...

It's certainly an interesting take on application design. A few key points:
  • Rather than dealing in threads, Chrome aims to deal in whole process management. New tab = new process, for example. This is a big change from the other mainstream browsers.
  • Rendering will use WebKit. JavaScript will use a new VM called V8.
  • Chrome's tabs will be on top. *gasp!*
  • Chrome will have its own "Awesome Bar" for URLs that hooks into Google searches, of course.
  • Chrome hopes to replace the "blank new window/tab" with a dynamic page that includes suggestions of pages that you frequently go to upon creating new windows.
  • Chrome will have an "Incognito Mode" that's basically Safari's "Private Browsing" applied to individual tabs rather than the whole thing.
  • Chrome will have lots of user-protection features including sandboxing, popup suppression, fishing detection, etc.
  • All open source, of course!


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Old 2008-09-01, 15:34

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brad View Post
Rather than dealing in threads, Chrome aims to deal in whole process management. New tab = new process, for example. This is a big change from the other mainstream browsers.
IE 8 has this, and IE has had per-process windows as an option for a long time (since 5.5? 5.0?).

As for the other things… eh, not too much exciting stuff in there for me. Mozilla must be getting nervous, though.
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Old 2008-09-01, 15:36

Here's to hoping they do a Cocoa UI.
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Yonzie
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Old 2008-09-01, 16:06

secretly reveals... Ehh... oxymoron if I ever hear one.
At least they use WebKit so as to not create even further browser incompatibilities. Why they don't use Sawfish* or whatever Safari's new JS engine is called... I have no clue. At least it's coming from Google so it should be standards-compliant.

* I know sawfish is a Window Manager for X, so the JS thing probably has a different name.

Converted 07/2005.
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Brad
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Old 2008-09-01, 16:08

Quote:
Originally Posted by chucker View Post
IE 8 has this, and IE has had per-process windows as an option for a long time (since 5.5? 5.0?).
Well, crap. Yeah, I should've remembered that.
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Brad
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Old 2008-09-01, 16:10

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yonzie View Post
Why they don't use Sawfish* or whatever Safari's new JS engine is called... I have no clue.
SquirrelFish.

With the most adorable tech mascot evar.



That said, I guess they're rolling their own because they want MOAR FASTER.
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Mugge
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Old 2008-09-01, 18:06

Really interesting. Kinda puts some new life into Netscape's old vision of making the browser the new OS. This should be more of a threat to Microsoft than the Firefox crew. After all Firefox can just plunder the features they like with no regard to open source vs. proprietary licensing issues.

Any idea when it will be available for the public to try?



My favourite part in the comic was all the small references to popular concepts, like the monkey with typewriters.

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Banana
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Old 2008-09-01, 22:17

For someone not totally familiar with issues/problems/climate of web development, the comics was quite educating in explaining why the current web browsers behave the way they do. It had answered my question about why Apple couldn't save my other Safari tabs/windows when it crashes on one tab (also true of Firefox, though there's restore sessions), outrageous memory leaks and general asshattery caused by stupid & bad developed flash/JS/funky html.

I hope that the Chrome will be the new standard; Time to move on a new generation of browsers, don't you think?
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InactionMan
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Old 2008-09-01, 23:28

I like that they got Scott McCloud to do the comic. He's really a master at the craft. Given that he's literally written the book on how to write comics it's no surprise that he's drawn one that does a great job of explaining how Google's new browser works.

Can't wait to test out the Chrome at work tomorrow. Great way to kill a few hours.
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Banana
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Old 2008-09-01, 23:44

So that's why the artwork looked familiar!

How funny that I had perused that book at a local bookstore. Really liked how he put his art to a good use for educating.

Hopefully he won't be working for commies disserting propaganda.

/tangent
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rasmits
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Old 2008-09-02, 00:58

Besides the new homepage, which I like, I don't see too many very interesting new features. Hopefully this will finally pull all of Google's services together in an elegant manner, but I won't hold my breath.

Meanwhile, I really wish Google would give up on Gears and embrace HTML 5's superior implementation...

You had me at asl
.......
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Old 2008-09-02, 01:07

Out of curiosity, what is the HTML version that has the most widespread use? I understand that not all browsers/web apps use the most current HTML? I'd imagine that even if HTML 5 was indeed the HTML to end all HTML™, it'd be years before it was adopted, no?
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Mugge
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Old 2008-09-02, 03:28

According to Ars, the prototype is going to be Windows first.

I sure hope this doesn't mean they are going to do half-hearted Cocoa implementation.

Another thing that really got me riled up the other day was that TDC who manages the implementation of the public Digital Signature in Denmark has dissed Safari because they think Keychain is a security risk. Surely they can't say no to Google, but on the other hand I really like Keychain. Now I'm hoping that I can have my cake and eat it too.
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Old 2008-09-02, 03:45

Quote:
Originally Posted by Banana View Post
Out of curiosity, what is the HTML version that has the most widespread use? I understand that not all browsers/web apps use the most current HTML? I'd imagine that even if HTML 5 was indeed the HTML to end all HTML™, it'd be years before it was adopted, no?
I suppose all browsers fully implement HTML 3.2, but that's rather meaningless. No engine fully implements 4.01 (from 1997); therefore, not a one fully implements the equivalent XHTML 1.0, much less 1.1.

Several engines have started implementing subsets of HTML 5. I don't believe anything from XHTML 2 has ever been seriously implemented.

Aside from adding a boatload of new, much-needed features and standardizing on existing ones engines previously implemented separately, HTML 5 also clarifies a lot of how to use existing parts of HTML 4, so it might ultimately lead to a more consistent experience. That said, yes, it'll be a long time.
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digitaldave
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Old 2008-09-02, 03:46

Chrome looks interesting, and I'll certainly be checking it out on Windows and eventually on OS X as well. As for the OS X version, I'm hoping that it's all properly done in Cocoa, with none of that half-arsed 'native OS X' stuff they did in FF3. I also hope that they integrate with existing OS X system services like the spell checker and Keychain. They mentioned plug ins, so it'll be interesting to see how far they go with this - will it just be things like QT, Flash etc., or will they open it up for user written add ons like in FF?
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MagSafe
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Old 2008-09-02, 04:24

Can't wait till tomorrow ...will definitely be testing this out at work for most of the morning.

I use practically all of Google's services so now that there finally creating a browser, it'll be nice to see how or if they'll integrate things like Gmail, Bookmarks, etc.

Find me on Twitter: @StevenMcLintock
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Jason
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Old 2008-09-02, 08:13

The web does not need another browser. Dear God! There is enough incompatibility as it is.
Note to Google - Please work on Releasing a Push Mail service instead of wasting time on a browser.

GO! GET TO DA CHOPPAH! RUN!
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Old 2008-09-02, 09:00

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason View Post
The web does not need another browser. Dear God! There is enough incompatibility as it is.
The layout engine is WebKit, so compatibility shouldn't get much worse.
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Banana
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Old 2008-09-02, 09:17

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason View Post
The web does not need another browser. Dear God! There is enough incompatibility as it is.
Note to Google - Please work on Releasing a Push Mail service instead of wasting time on a browser.
FWIW, I do not think this is web browser per se but something more than that. For one, they intend to redesign how web applications are handled, which will fix many existing problems that several browsers are not quite able to resolve. Memory leaks, crash bringing down the whole application rather than just one misbehaving page, security issues (especially so with Windows environment, ActiveX controls, etc.). Those cannot be fixed with a update because they're a design flaw from the beginning.

Besides, it will be open source, so Mozilla & others could just take from it and use it to improve the overall experience.

So, I don't think having "another browser" is a bad thing.
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Dovek916
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Old 2008-09-02, 14:22

It has been launched. It is by invitation only, ie, enter your email so google can stalk you and then eventually they will give you Chrome. The site does have a product overview and the such. The linky is here. I signed up, but haven't heard back, it was like 5 minutes ago, but we will see how exclusive it is. I think it will be interesting to try it, regardless of if it is any good. It looks ok, but nothing fantastic. It will be interesting to see if people take to it.

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.
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Yonzie
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Old 2008-09-02, 14:36

The site is live now: http://www.google.com/chrome

The comic was great. And I wants it. Lots of reasons to like it. A lot.
I'm just disappointed that it doesn't *really* have the tabs on top, like it seemed in the comic. While I at first thought it was stupid, the explanation of their handling of the tab metaphor totally made sense, and I'm a bit miffed they didn't follow through properly. (This while I absolutely abhor software that strays from the standard square-window metaphor...)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mugge View Post
TDC who manages the implementation of the public Digital Signature in Denmark has dissed Safari
Well, the Digital Signature solution chosen is... let's just say "less than optimal", so what would you expect?

Converted 07/2005.
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Old 2008-09-02, 14:50

Quote:
The site is live now: http://www.google.com/chrome
Not to be picky, but I will,
Quote:
The linky is here.
just sayin'
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InactionMan
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Old 2008-09-02, 14:55

It sure is ugly. And just like Safari for Windows it doesn't like my company's proxy server.
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Yonzie
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Old 2008-09-02, 15:03

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dovek916 View Post
Not to be picky, but I will, just sayin'
I write my posts slowly, and I was feeling too lazy to fix it
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Argento
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Old 2008-09-02, 15:04

So far my biggest complaint is that my mouse wheel won't scroll up, only down.
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ezkcdude
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Old 2008-09-02, 15:22

Walt Mossberg review.
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Old 2008-09-02, 16:08

UA string:

Quote:
Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-US) AppleWebKit/525.13 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/0.2.149.27 Safari/525.13
Ugh.
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Robo
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Old 2008-09-02, 17:08

I wonder if Google's going to keep paying people five dollars if they get someone to download Firefox, then...
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colivigan
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Old 2008-09-03, 12:02

I thought this was funny.

Here's what you see if you kill the process running behind one of the tabs.

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Old 2008-09-03, 12:50

Seems really slow the first time you go to a new site. Looks nicer than FF though.
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