Open Buddha

Open Source Buddhism, Technology, and Geekery

Google Chrome is the new black?


By Al Jigong Billings

Apparently, Google is going to release a web browser based on Webkit sometime in the near future. It is called "Chrome." While the browser is not available yet, a web comic, drawn by Scott McCloud was accidentally placed online early and then found by people (as an aside, I've seen this kind of thing bite a lot of projects in the ass before).

Google Chrome Comic - Page 3

You can see the entire comic at http://blogoscoped.com/google-chrome/ (if the server has come back up). I've also made a version of it available in a .cbz comic book file at http://www.mediafire.com/?sct1crovjdj. CBZ files are simply zip files containing images for use in reading comic books on computers. If you don't have a computer comic book reader program, you can just unzip the file and look at the numbered images in order in the file.

This page details some of the promised features mentioned in the comic but you can read it for yourself. TechCrunch also has a post on this Google browser as well.

Not having seen this browser yet (no one outside Google has, I would guess), it is hard to give an opinion on it. Generally, as long as things are standards based so we don't have to write some specialized version of web pages for a browser, I'm in the "the more, the merrier" camp, especially if it turns out to be entirely open source. Since they are using WebKit as the rendering engine for it, I expect that it will render pages as well (or as badly) as Safari does. Once I actually get a chance to play with it, I expect that I will have opinions about the specific Chrome features and whether they live up to their promises. I am kind of surprised that they used a web comic to explain the browser though. Most people would just write a simple web page or something. I'm not sure if this is a cool idea or just kind of a dumb one. Reactions will obviously vary. :-)

Update: Just as I posted this, the Google Blog put up a post on their new browser. They are launching a Windows-only beta for it on September 2 (tomorrow). The comic is now online at Google.