Google Chrome – the next network OS ?

Probably the biggest news in recent weeks, Google launches their own browser – Chrome. They have posted the behind-the-scene information about Chrome with 38 pages of comics. Indeed, if you read the pages without knowing the software beforehand, you will probably think they are talking about building an operating system. Anyway, if you don’t have the time to read thru the 38 pages, here are some main points:

  • A browser design around web applications, instead of web pages
  • It needs to be stable, faster, more secure, clean & efficient user interface … and make it open source
  • Make it a multi-process browser, not multi-threaded – no more browser crash just because one tab’s web page has memory leak or rendering bug …
  • There is a built-in task manager such that you can eliminate some mis-behave processes, if needed.
  • The beautiful part is, to me, Google can test each build of the Chrome browser by simply using their massive infrastructure to crawl tens of thousands of web pages. And they can also use the ranking of pages to test the most popular pages in the Internet …
  • Webkit is the rendering engine Chrome uses, and it is fast …
  • They also built a Javascript virtual machine. Instead of “interpreting” Javascript code, it generates machine code of the source. In addition, Chrome also improves the Javascript garbage collection method.
  • The user interface of the browser is redesigned – now the tabs are on top. And the URL box is now the Omnibox – it shows the search suggestions, top pages you have visited and those you have not visited.
  • There is a new tab page that shows the thumbnails of the 9 most visited pages.
  • You can turn on the read-only mode (they call it incognitco window) and it will not save your browsing history, cookies etc.
  • Each process has its own sandbox and cannot write / read files off your hard drive. No more watching your sensitive data and running malware … as soon as you close the tab, everything bad running in this tab is gone.
  • Chrome runs a security model better than BIBA security model which is used by Vista.
  • Chrome will warn the users of phishing and malware websites from lists Google is maintaining.
  • Google also introduces Gears to help the developers to improve the capabilities … 
  • It is an open source project, make available for all bright developers.

So, how’s the beta version performing so far ? Not as fast as it claims … but once it loaded the page, the speed is pretty good. And the page scrolling is a bit strange … Will keep you all posted.

Author: Michael Yung

Michael possessed over 30 years of experience in Information Technology with focuses on complex application development, database technologies and IT strategy. He also spent the last 20 years in Internet technology, eCommerce development / operations, web usability, computer security and Public Key Infrastructure technologies.

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