Google recently let “slip” a comic strip outlining their new web browser, Chrome. This is not the kind of comic strip you are used to seeing in the Sunday paper; the lengthy and informative comic strip uses pictures and practical explanations to help the average Joe decipher exactly what the new web browser is meant to do and how it will be faster and more useful. The actual comic strip is close to 100 pages long and is mostly written in tech jargon that would, without all the nice pictures and explanations, go way over the heads of most readers.
So what exactly makes this web browser different from the ones running today? Google goes to great length to answer this question in their comic strip, but it can be summed up in a much shorter amount of time for anyone just trying to decide, “Is it worth downloading?” When the first web browser was created way back in the stone-age, it was primarily meant to read text files, emails, and your basic online news. There have been countless updates to these programs over the years and even the introduction of new browsers, such as firefox, safari, etc, but these updates are still based on the same basic web browser format. To give you an idea of why this is bad, think of how much time you spend on the internet watching videos, playing games, loading pictures, and viewing pages that have those annoying animated advertisements. All of these things are known as applications, and have all been created since the first web browser was designed. These applications are what slow your web browser down while it is running and can sometimes cause the whole browser to crash.
Google Chrome is in line to be the first of several up and coming browsers that will be totally designed from scratch to accommodate for all of these applications and still run at optimal speeds. The new browser does things like isolate open tabs and immediately scrap memory from recently closed tabs. Until now, if you were to have several tabs open in your browser and any one of them crashed, because of a memory overload of a rogue web page, your whole browser would crash and all of your tabs would be lost. With Chrome, each tab is isolated in its own “sandbox”, and if one crashes, it can be closed without endangering any of the other tabs. Chrome will also run faster than previous browsers because of its memory management. Older browsers, when closing an opened tab, would keep parts of the tab open in its memory bank. Though unseen by the user, these particles of memory, over time, will significantly slow down the speed of the browser. With the use of isolated tabs, not only will the tabs run independent from one other, but each tab will be completely scrapped when closed within the browser, leaving more memory for the tabs that remain open.
By this time I hope you haven’t stopped reading to go download the new web browser messiah. As previously mentioned, the comic strip introducing Chrome “slipped,” and the browser is still forthcoming. Google has, however, released a beta of the browser to allow for initial consumer feedback. Google has also released all of the written code for Chrome, in hopes that the entire internet community will contribute to the new browser, to make for a better finished product.
Chrome promises to be the browser that most of us are looking for. The design of the browser is clean and simple, like that of the classic Google homepage. Most people don’t care about the appearance of the browser, but rather want a tool that is streamlined and simple, and will do a better job of running the sites, applications, and pages that make up the web. While Chrome may not be the end-all of web browsers, it is definitely a step in the right direction.
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