Tag: google

Chrome and silent updates

I was wondering how Chrome handled it’s updates.  Turns out, Google pushes them down silently.  You get no notifications that your browser has been updated, it just happens.

Normally, I’d say this is a good thing.  I mean, from a user interface viewpoint, I shouldn’t need to control the updates, nor should I need to be notified.  The software should "just work", which includes seamless updates.  Google claims they will provide release notes at some point, so those of use who want to see what was changed can do so.  That’s assuming that Google doesn’t hide those updates. :)

There is some controversy over the latest security updates though.  Google pushed down an update, but won’t say what they updated, and they’ve sorta hidden the changes in the open-source code too.

For more on the "security fixes" issue, I suggest you read the full article at CNet.

There is a topic on the Joel on Software board (in the Business of Software) about Chrome.  Actually, there are several, but I’ve only linked one here.  It’s got some neat reviews, and some insights too.  Worth reading.  Thoughts on Chrome.

Learn something new every day! GMail

Color me silly, but I just notice this in GMail.

  1. Open GMail in your favorite browser.
  2. Click the Settings link (Top right)
  3. Click the Labs link (far right in the orange bar)
  4. These are "beta" type features you can enable if you want.  Some are kinda neat (random signature lines, customer keyboards shortcuts) and some are silly (play Snakes in GMail).
  5. Enable or Disable any you want, and your done!

I often use the Better GMail 2 plug-in, but since I’ve been using Chrome, I don’t have any plug-ins.  But I don’t really miss  Better GMail 2 right now.  Guess I didn’t rely on it much. :)

Chrome – As good as it seems?

Well, I’ve now spent a full day using Chrome, the new browser from Google.

There are many things I miss.  AdBlock.  Better GMail 2.  A download manager (I like DownThemAll for Firefox.) The status bar (ok, so I like to hover over a link and see where it’s going to open).  Update: DOH! You can hover over links.  It gives you a popup status bar, which goes away after moving off the link.

There are many things I like.  Chrome is fast.  It’s wicked easy to move tabs into a new window, and back to the original window.  Firefox will let you do it, but it reloads the page.  Chrome simple moves the existing process into a new window.  Or back into a tab.

The Google Chrome EULA is a bit scary.  Supposedly, it’s going to be modified.  But we’ll have to wait and see if it truly is.  UPDATE: Here is a more "authoritative" post from Matt Cutts on the Chrome EULA question.

And they did change the EULA:

Update, Sept. 3rd 2008: Earlier today, Google changed section 11 of the EULA to read as follows:

11. Content license from you

11.1 You retain copyright and any other rights you already hold in Content which you submit, post or display on or through, the Services.

I’m looking forward to new features as time goes on.  Google is usually pretty good at adding new features based on user response, so I’m sure we’ll see new stuff soon.

I haven’t done any web development yet with Chrome, so I haven’t missed my developer tools in Firefox.  But I’m sure I will.  Of course, any decent developer uses several different browsers to ensure compatibility anyhow. :)

Chrome is here!

I just downloaded Chrome.  The new web browser from Google.  My first impression is… this thing is FAST!  I mean very fast.  Pages that took a half second to load are now instant.  GMail (which uses a lot of JavaScript) is noticeable faster.

I haven’t put Chrome through it paces yet.  I’ve only tried it with about 5 of the normal sites I use.  I’ll post more as I have more to say.  I’ll also try to get up some screen shots, and talk about their user interface.

When asked "Why build a new browser"? Google Said:

Since we spend so much time online, we began seriously thinking about what kind of browser could exist if you started from scratch and built on the best elements out there. We realized that the web had evolved from mainly simple text pages to rich, interactive applications and that we needed to completely rethink the browser. What we really needed was not just a browser, but also a modern platform for web pages and applications, and that’s what we set out to build.

So today we’re releasing the beta version of a new open source browser: Google Chrome.

You can read more about Chrome from the Chrome website on Google.  There are screen shots and a full digital book (comic book format) that explains the guts of Chrome and why it’s supposed to be better.  Oh yeah… it’s Open Source too… so that should make some folks happy.

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