Posted by: David Stewart | September 2, 2008

Google Chrome – first look

Chrome is Google's new open source browser.

  • Most of the new features are really in how stuff is implemented. These advantages are likely invisible for most users.
  • That said, if you have some inkling about technology, the Web Comic which was “leaked early” describing these technical details is a fun way to learn about them.
  • The UI does seem clean and simple, which was a goal.
  • The UI differences with Firefox are fairly minor or slightly annoying, depending on how much you like Firefox. In particular, with Firefox 3.0, I now like the way they did the back button history list.

The browser came up just fine for me and seems to run fast.

Some negatives:

  • No integration with Del.icio.us (or “delicious.com” if you prefer). That's a deal breaker for my daily use.
  • In fact, no published plug-in API at all from what Josh tells me. Support for all Mozilla plug-ins would be a nice step, yeah?
  • No Linux or OpenSolaris version. That's incredible! Even small teams like Songbird had Linux versions out for many revs, and a strong enough community to build an OpenSolaris version over a weekend developer summit. I love having my key apps on all of my work platforms. Another deal-breaker.

Since most of the advantages are “under the hood”, you have to take these things for granted as advantages, unless you are the type who pops the hood open for a look-see.

It's a little like trying to demonstrate how good a particular motor oil is for an auto. There are some novel demos for such a thing, though most are pretty contrived.

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