It doesn't happen that often, but, sometimes, your favorite Web sites insist on loading links on their pages into a new browser window. That, or you simply like having multiple instances of Chrome running in separate windows-I won't judge your preference. That's cool.
So, when this does happen, how do you go about reducing your multiple windows to a single browser entity that's split into multiple tabs? You could always drag-and-drop these separate windows into a single Chrome instance, but that can be a time-consuming, laborious process depending on just how many different windows you might have open at once. A quaint little extension called JoinTabs eliminates this difficulty by giving you a one-shot button that automatically mashes all of your open windows into one, tab-drenched browser.
Google's been known to challenge conventions a time or two, and it looks like the search giant is getting ready to do it again. If you're rocking the Web with the latest developer version of Chrome, then you may have noticed Google has done away with the http:// prefix. That's not a bug, but by design.
Apparently Google thinks the prefix just isn't needed anymore, so they're toying with the idea of hiding it altogether. But as some experimental Chrome users have pointed out, this may not be the best idea.
"Many blogs, message boards, email viewing software, instant messaging software, etc. depend on matching against http:// to auto-link URLs. Removing http:// will train end-users to omit it, which will have a negative impact on usability all over the web," one user commented.
As another user points out, this could pose a problem with some of Google's own products. The Google Talk desktop client, for example, doesn't auto-link URL fragments without the http:// prefix.
Do you think it's a good idea to ditch the prefix? Hit the jump and sound off.
Users of the Chrome and Firefox 3.6 browsers got a nice treat today courtesy of Google. Gmail in those browsers now supports drag and drop file attachments. Instead of using the attachment link to bring up a file explorer window, you can just drag files into the Gmail interface and have them uploaded automatically. The feature works with multiple file uploads and requires no tinkering with settings.
Dragging a file (or files) anywhere in the Gmail window will bring up a special box in the area usually reserved for attachments. Simply drop the file(s) anywhere in that box to upload. Google hinted in their blog post that the feature was only being enabled in Firefox 3.6 and Chrome due to a some missing features in other browsers. Perhaps some sort of HTML5 support?
We really dig this feature, and hope that Google adds more UI elements that are this intuitive. Is this the sort of feature you'll use? Anything you've really been hoping Gmail would implement?
If there's one thing I hate, it's plugin problems. That's plug-ins as in browser plugins, or one of the few reasons why I switched from Mozilla Firefox to Google Chrome for my default browser. In Chrome, a crashing plugin only affects itself; the rest of the browser is spared the messy issues (and random shutdown) that arise from problems on a page. The worst that can happen is that the actual tab your own shuts down: the rest of your browsing experience should remain unaffected by a plugin catastrophe.
Well, Firefox is borrowing a page from Google's book of process isolation, for that's the exact technique that Mozilla has built into the Lorentz version of its popular browser. The various tabs you open in Firefox Lorentz remain isolated from each other's wicked ways, in that crashing plugins will only affect the page or tab they're on--prompting a gray fade-out of your screen and an automatic reload, if you so choose. The rest of your multi-tab browser will stay exactly the same as it was pre-crash.
You can't walk a mile on the Internet without stumbling across the same argument over and over: iPad or Chrome? Chrome or iPad? Apple, Google, and Microsoft walk into a room: there are two bats on the ground. Who comes out alive?
The answer, of course, is the proverbial letter D: none of the above. No matter how you slice and dice the various players in the netbook/laptop/tablet/whatever markets, the consumers are the ones that ultimately suffer from today's battles. In the case of Google and Apple, the loss is one of control. And I, myself, worry how this might represent the future of general or portable computing: A time when it's the manufacturer, not the user, who dictates every bit of how you interact with your system.
New data from analytics firm Net Applications shows Google's Chrome browser holding a 6.1% market share through March. Based on the rate of increase, the browser is expected to break into double digits this year. Moat of Chrome's gains have come at the expense of Microsoft's Internet Explorer, which fell from 61.6% to 60.7% in March. It should be noted this is also when the EU implemented their browser ballot screen.
Chrome has been on the rise as of late as other browsers were flat of shrank. Even the ever popular Firefox only saw 0.3% growth in March. Chrome had only a 1.6% market share this time last year, so usage has nearly quadrupled. Google has been iterating the browser rapidly and recently added extension support for the stable builds. Combined with the speed and stability of the browser, it may finally be catching the eye of more users.
The upcoming Chrome OS is expected to be based on the Chrome browser. In the early preview builds users Chrome simply sits on top of the underlying framework allowing users to access cloud-based applications. The expectation is that this will be similar to the final product. Do you use Chrome? If so, why did you choose it over Firefox?
Since WebGL depends on the OpenGL graphics API, it is better suited to Linux and OS X as compared to Windows. But Google has just announced a new initiative called Almost Native Graphics Layer Engine, or ANGLE, to “layer WebGL's subset of the OpenGL ES 2.0 API over DirectX 9.0c API calls.” For those not comfortable with the technical argot, ANGLE will help execute WebGL on Windows systems using DirectX 9.0, and “without having to rely on OpenGL drivers.”
According to Henry Bridge, a product manager at Google, ANGLE will also prove to be useful for those developing applications for mobile and embedded devices. “ANGLE should make it simpler to prototype these applications on Windows, and also gives developers new options for deploying production versions of their code to the desktop,” he wrote on the Chromium Blog.
It was an innocuous question, part of a grander lunchtime chat about life, the Internet, and The Future Way of Things. My coworker was curious about the benefits of open-source--specifically those advantages with a dollar sign preceding them--and naturally thought that the upstart Google operating system could someday attract a huge portion of Microsoft Windows's market share.
Why wouldn't enterprise businesses love the Google solution? The amount of money they would be able to save from the reduced desktop licensing requirements would be large enough to transform a CFO's eyes into saucers, Roger Rabbit-style. Similarly, entities that rely on a variety of customized programs and applications to conduct business could weave these elements into the open-source architecture of Chrome OS.
So let's roll out the red carpet and prep the TV hosts for the big unveiling of Chrome OS in big busin... or not. There's one reason, and one reason only, why an open-source desktop isn't going to succeed in the consumer or enterprise markets: Microsoft was there first.
If you haven't done so already, be sure to grab the latest Chrome browser update (Tools Menu > About Google Chrome) and upgrade to version 18.104.22.1686. Included in the latest update are several security fixes, including five "high" priority ones. These include:
Race conditions and pointer errors int he sandbox infrastructure
Memory error with malformed SVG
Memory error with empty SVG element
The latest Chrome release also comes with a few new features, including a translate infobar, certain privacy features, and disabling the experimental anti-reflected-XSS feature called "XSS Auditor."
Ever since its release, Google has tagged Chrome installs with a unique ID. The search giant is now reportedly abandoning that practice. Future versions of the browser will still install with a unique ID that will be used to check for the first automatic update. After that task is complete, the ID will be deleted.
It has always been Google’s position that the client ID was only used to determine when users update, and in the event of a crash (but only if crash reporting is turned on). Some privacy advocates have long held that the unique identifier could lessen browser privacy. However, no one has ever been able to show that to be the case.
As Chrome continues to gain market share, Google appears to be tweaking it to keep it palatable to users. There is a certain amount of Google fatigue out there, and if privacy concerns become too pervasive, Google could lose public trust. Even though there was no confirmed privacy breach caused by this feature, does its removal make you feel more comfortable using Chrome?