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Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Google Chrome : Nudging Users Towards A New Direction

At last the wait is over. Google browser is launched. I downloaded immediately and my first impressions are good - it is definitely fast, tabs sitting together in a manner pleasing to the eye and so far could not detect any compatibility problems. The home page layout is quite attractive. Memory and process management is the bane of IE and chrome seems to score very well on that front. Handling hundreds of imported bookmarked pages was quite easy and effective.

What’s the tenet here: The browser as the micro operating system/web application infrastructure, and the sophistication shows itself in its handling of all the individual applications separately. Built in Gears support and easy handling of downloads facilitate adding web applications to the desktop. Unlike conventional browsers supporting static web pages, Google Chrome's design is anchored on effective support of the web applications. Its powerful JavaScript engine brings in a differentiation value and . the browser enables creation of applications on the fly. With Gears offline access support is provided as well to add power to these applications.
With the popular notion of the anvil of the arrays of cloud applications, this would become quite handy. As I wrote before, Google chrome may extend in future as a mobile browser with ability to run many rich, connected apps concurrently. Incognito, the ability to privately surf, or more precisely the ability to open an incognito tab when you have a range of tabs already open is a powerful feature. In all this the cardinal principle of simplicity seems to have been preserved. Ofcourse, Chrome needs to nurture a large ecosystem to create powerful plug-ins for the world to begin to see its impact.

I endorse Walt Mossberg’s observation that Chrome is a smart, innovative browser that, in many common scenarios, will make using the Web faster, easier and less frustrating.

Whats the significance of this launch(some may say yet another browser!)? The key thing is that Google sees itself moving this web application infrastructure forward with Google chrome making in the process enriching rich web apps further. With more of such rich apps, Google believes the much talked about shift from desktop to the internet would happen faster and so here we see Google with Chrome & Android nudging the community to a new direction.

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Monday, September 01, 2008

The Google Browser -At Last

Google just officially confirmed that it is releasing a new open-source web browser,named Google Chrome .
My immediate reaction is to see Google also launch a mobile browser that can be deployed to multiple OS platforms. This may influence adoption/potential cross-over to the Android mobile platform. Sandboxed Tabs would be a key thing to watch.They are also moving to multiple processes. Seriously, waiting to try as soon as this gets released.

As I pointed out years back, Google is using the internet to systematically devalue Microsoft’s assets, forcing a “Microsoft’s Black Monday” on the wall street in future. Google is leveraging the mantra that built Microsoft: who controls the UI controls the user; who controls the API controls the programmer.

While there may be scepticism about what could a new broswer do - except introducemore confusion, as I see it, if Google Chrome delivers on its promise of speed, stability, security and reliability, it will like gmail soon commiand the mind share of the web users. This in turn should make it possible to push common web standards! The advantages of their fundamental design changes will likely force other browser makers to reexamine and bring out similar or better appraoches to the market . On the privacy front,the google chrome ecosystem should bring in the right plug-ins to allay any concern there. This will definitely shake up the IE/Windows behemoth .

As cloud computing, becomes more mainstream, users will begin to spend more time online - and a presence in the entire internet food chain is going to help Google.While Google's products are not a replacement OS, but the collection of tools released thus far serve the same purpose. Even products that run on Windows PCs, such as Google's Picasa photo-editing software, could tie back to Google's online services. Google is intelligently rebatching Microsoft desktop products/services as its. Web companies, such as eBay, Yahoo and Amazon.com, treat their Web sites as customizable platforms, & offers a starkly different technology vision to developers than traditional software companies do.It is slowly leading to a situation where one model says build for Windows and the Microsoft 'stack'; the other says build for the Internet. The platform of the future shall not be focussed on controlling the hardware but it is going to be around access, community, collaboration & content.
Clearly , this is an exciting announcement that will benefit competition, innovation, enforcing standards, web developers and the horde of web users.

Update : Google quickly repointed the Google Browser launch page to its homepage!

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Sadagopan's Weblog on Emerging Technologies, Trends,Thoughts, Ideas & Cyberworld
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