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Mozilla's Thoughts On Google's Chrome

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 6 years ago | from the waxing-philosophical dept.

Google 604

tandiond writes to tell us that in a recent blog posting, Mozilla CEO John Lily shared his thoughts on Google's new browser project, Chrome, and what that means for Mozilla. "It should come as no real surprise that Google has done something here — their business is the web, and they've got clear opinions on how things should be, and smart people thinking about how to make things better. Chrome will be a browser optimized for the things that they see as important, and it'll be interesting to see how it evolves." Mozilla's Europe president, Tristan Nitot also chimed in during an interview with PCPro, stating that they don't view this as a direct attack on Firefox, even if it did catch them by surprise. "I'll take another example: just before Microsoft launched Vista, it invited us [to work with it] so that Firefox works better on Windows Vista. Because for it, Firefox being a top-tier application that was very successful - we now have 200 million users around the world - it could not afford to have Firefox run slowly on Vista. Therefore, it helped us improve Firefox for Vista. That's just the same for Google. It wants Firefox to perform well with its applications, that's for sure. Indeed, it even wants IE to perform well with Gmail and the rest. It's just that it has very limited control over this. That's why Google's been frustrated and it is launching this Chrome browser."

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Can I call 'em? (5, Informative)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846295)

Indeed, it even wants IE to perform well with Gmail and the rest. It's just that it has very limited control over this. That's why Google's been frustrated and it is launching this Chrome browser.

Did I call it [slashdot.org] , or what? ;-)

For those of you who are interested, Chrome is supposed to be launching later today [blogspot.com] . Apparently around 11 AM PDT [i4u.com] to coincide with the press conference. (Any moment now...) For those of you who can't wait, PCWorld seems to have figured out how to finagle screenshots [pcworld.com] out of Google's 404 page.

For those of you who didn't get to see it, the comic book [google.com] is now available for viewing.

Re:Can I call 'em? (4, Informative)

physman_wiu (933339) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846435)

Doing a search on Google for Google Chrome download gives this

Google Chrome - Download a new browser
Google Chrome is a browser that combines a minimal design with sophisticated technology to make the web faster, safer, and easier.
gears.google.com/chrome/?hl=en - 7k - 18 hours ago - Cached - Similar pages - Note this

download link at gears it seems

Re:Can I call 'em? (3, Interesting)

Robotech_Master (14247) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846719)

Apparently the download page accidentally went live very briefly at midnight Pacific last nightâ"long enough to get into Google's cache. (They quickly purged it, however.)

Re:Can I call 'em? (3, Insightful)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846947)

That's just what I always wanted... for the company that tracks every page I view where they can and owns the DoubleClick network to build my browser.

No thanks. Somehow, I don't think the extensions I use to block Google will be supported by this fork.

Open Source Search (3, Insightful)

Nerdposeur (910128) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847069)

It may be old news, but I just listened to a podcast interview with Jimmy Wales today. He has started Wikia Search, meant to be a free-as-in-speech search engine, with publicly-available web crawls generated by distributed computing using Grub. The algorithms, he said, should be open too.

I have to admit that I'm practically a Google fanboi, but since owning search pretty much means owning the internet, I really like this idea. If you're uncomfortable with Google's power, why not try to help Wikia Search?

Re:Can I call 'em? (3, Informative)

Qzukk (229616) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846609)

(Any moment now...)

Hopefully soon, the "hype misfire" has caused all sorts of people to be spamming blogs with all sorts of links to God knows what as "secret chrome download here!"

Re:Can I call 'em? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24847115)

Did I call it, or what?

I'm going to go with "what", since this is about Mozilla's thoughts about the project, and your post mentions nothing about Mozilla's thoughts.

Not exactly a threat, not exactly friendly (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24846321)

Not a direct attack, but definitely a threat to that Google Search box revenue stream...

Re:Not exactly a threat, not exactly friendly (4, Insightful)

mr_mischief (456295) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846873)

The current agreement goes through 2011, so it's not an immediate problem. The Firefox team over at Mozilla might want to comb through the Chrome code for ideas, if the two OSS licenses are compatible. WebKit is LGPL. I dunno what V8 or the other parts of Chrome are licensed.

Yeah right... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24846335)

What he means is, "We don't see Google Chrome as a threat and it will never be more powerful than us." That BS needs to stop.

Google Chrome, if it includes none of Google's Do No Evil privacy actions(since they've broken their promist in the past), will be will be more popular than Firefox.

Ben over Firefox team, you're next!

Linux support will be coming later (4, Informative)

fprintf (82740) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846351)

I read that support for Linux will be coming out later. I can only hope the schedule is more aggressive that the one they used for Google Earth. It seemed ages before I was able to get that running.

Re:Linux support will be coming later (5, Funny)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846751)

I read that support for Linux will be coming out later.

Like most of the other Google toys, the Linux version will come out after Chrome leaves Beta.

Re:Linux support will be coming later (4, Funny)

Drooling Iguana (61479) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847063)

Google toys leave beta?

Re:Linux support will be coming later (2, Informative)

Paradigm_Complex (968558) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846781)

That's in part because Google Earth is closed source. I expect a fair number of people to help Google get the Linux version out a bit earlier because they're actually allowed to help this time around.

Re:Linux support will be coming later (1, Interesting)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847233)

I had my hopes up for a very quick port from a third party. Then I found out that Google is going to use the creative commons attribution-noncommercial-noderivatives license. I guess that we will only be seeing this when Google decides to port it to Linux, and only on those distros that Google feels are worthy of having Chrome ported to them, and only in the exact configuration Google selects. I suppose the Google fanboys will have endless explanations for why Google chose a no-derivatives license.

Open source mojo (5, Insightful)

Stanistani (808333) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846365)

I will be interested to see how much Firefox code is in Chrome... and down the line, how much Chrome code will be pulled into future versions of Firefox.

The ability to improve your codebase is one of the strengths of open source. This is a great opportunity to display that strength.

Re:Open source mojo (1)

Amouth (879122) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846437)

i just hope they don't share the same rendering engine..

Re:Open source mojo (3, Informative)

Kelson (129150) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846475)

i just hope they don't share the same rendering engine..

Chrome uses WebKit, so they don't. Or are you saying you hope Firefox doesn't switch to WebKit later on?

Re:Open source mojo (3, Informative)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846503)

Since Chrome is based on WebKit with their own high performance javascript engine, I'd guess 0 lines of code.

Re:Open source mojo (5, Insightful)

Kelson (129150) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846577)

I will be interested to see how much Firefox code is in Chrome... and down the line, how much Chrome code will be pulled into future versions of Firefox.

The ability to improve your codebase is one of the strengths of open source. This is a great opportunity to display that strength.

Even without open source, we're seeing a lot of concepts getting shared among browsers. IE8 and Chrome are picking up the full-history address bar search from Firefox and Opera. Chrome's new-tab page looks a lot like Opera's speed dial. When one browser tries something that works, the others are copying the concepts, and all of them end up better.

Just having multiple groups working on the same problems, each trying out different solutions, is helping innovation.

Re:Open source mojo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24847033)

This brought my thought process to another reason why people don't want to work with MS: they stifle innovation with thousands of software patents (reaching 10k ... many of which are absurd [slashdot.org] ), yet won't hesitate to grab ideas from others and use it.

I'd hope maybe this would help them change their ways, but I seriously doubt it. Until things are done right in the USPTO, MS will continue to abuse it.

google go home (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24846399)

We don't need another singular commercial entity creating standards de jure by sole virtue of the value of their ticker symbol. Creating a web world built on javascript is just gross.

Re:google go home (0, Troll)

FiloEleven (602040) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846711)

Troll go home. We don't need another anonymous coward making unfounded statements about things that he poorly understands (including poor phonetic substitutes for French phrases whose meaning is likely also beyond his comprehension).

Re:google go home (1)

frenchbedroom (936100) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847123)

For anyone who doubts that Âde jure is a French expression, you have it right. De jure is of course a Latin expression and the spelling used by the GP is correct.

Re:google go home (1)

msuarezalvarez (667058) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847137)

While you are right that Anonymous Coward should not be using those little phrases if he does not understand them (he surely meant "de facto", which is, in a way, the exact opposite of "de jure"...), it is not French.

Re:google go home (3, Informative)

Steauengeglase (512315) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847051)

When Google gets in the business of coming up with their own standards, server and scripting languages I'll get back to you on that.

This is a good thing for Mozilla/Firefox (4, Insightful)

Pengo (28814) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846419)

Really, Firefox's competitor isn't Chrome, it's diluting standards based browser compatibility. If Google can come in and hammer out some market share and re-establish even further the importance for developers to stick to standards, it might be all that FF/Safari/Opera needs to really muscle over the 30-50% market share, and just enough credibility to keep Microsoft at bay.

This is not a close source browser that Google is shipping (According to their blogs/information), anyone can fork it and run with what they like/dislike.

I for one am very excited at what this means to alternative (to Internet Explorer) browsers.

This isn't a shot fired at Firefox, it's aimed squarely at Redmond.

Re:This is a good thing for Mozilla/Firefox (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24846797)

...so Debian and Ubuntu can have their own forked version, complete with silly name? Whoopee!

Re:This is a good thing for Mozilla/Firefox (2, Insightful)

Svartalf (2997) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846893)

Yanno... If they keep compliance, who cares?

Re:This is a good thing for Mozilla/Firefox (1)

Lobster Quadrille (965591) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847239)

I hope so. As soon as a version comes out with added privacy features (I have no doubt that Google will be profiling people's web browsing), I'll give it a shot.

Re:This is a good thing for Mozilla/Firefox (5, Insightful)

Chyeld (713439) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846831)

As long as they don't cannibalize the installed Firefox base to build their own, it's not an attack. On the other hand, if 90% of the people who install Chrome are the ones who would have gone Firefox anyway, and the rest still mope around with IE, then it's an attack. Intended or not.

Re:This is a good thing for Mozilla/Firefox (5, Interesting)

BitZtream (692029) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847201)

Chrome will certainly get tried by some people who would have tried Firefox.

But what exactly do you think will happen when everyone using IE visits www.google.com and finds out about a replacement for IE brought to them by the same people who make that awesome search engine and web mail they use all the time?

If all Google really wants out of the deal is beating IE, then they just make sure that you get a nice advertisment when you go to google to search with IE, and leave the firefox/safari/opera people alone.

There ARE ways for Google to directly target Microsoft only and leave everyone else alone. The question is, do they want to?

I fail to see how Google making their own browser is any different than IE 1.0. The goals are the same from this chair. Get people away from using the market leader in order to benifit our own profits.

I like what Google has done with themselves to date, but I've seen a big company like this make a web browser before and I'm still feeling the effects of that 10 years later. I'm more concerned with what Google does in the long term than who they are targeting. Who they are targetting is irrelavent really, what they intend to do if they succeed is what matters.

Re:This is a good thing for Mozilla/Firefox (3, Insightful)

ericspinder (146776) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846981)

Firefox's competitor isn't Chrome

And Android isn't a competitor of the iPhone. Please, of course it is, but having another fair (I hope), well known participant in the market will be a really good thing. Maybe they'll even start being able to bully IE into more complete standards.

At least at first Mozilla should expect to see Firefox number drop consistently over the next couple of months. As a good number of the same people who use Firefox are exactly the same people who will be trying this new browser. If it's a good product, eventually it may start poaching off of MSIE, but clearly most of Chrome's first adapters will be converts from my (our current) favorite browser.

Re:This is a good thing for Mozilla/Firefox (1)

Dan East (318230) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847029)

You've got a good point. Just like so many precedents set by Microsoft, they don't want to make things easy for their competitors. If making IE fully standard compliant allows Google apps to run faster and more reliably, then Microsoft shoots itself in the foot. Sony DVD players don't support DivX, because in addition to producing hardware, Sony also produces movies. Since DivX is primarily used for distributing content over the internet, which is something Sony cannot control, it is not in Sony's interest to support DivX in their hardware. It's the same thing with Internet Explorer.

The good news is that Firefox has nothing to lose in supporting standards, so hopefully IE will lose out to Firefox before Firefox loses out to Chrome.

Re:This is a good thing for Mozilla/Firefox (4, Informative)

fm6 (162816) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847111)

This is not a close source browser that Google is shipping (According to their blogs/information), anyone can fork it and run with what they like/dislike.

It's worth mentioning that this is exactly how Chrome's Webkit engine got invented in the first place. It started out as a revision, then a fork, of KDE's KHTML engine. A lot of us were pretty hard on Apple when it became obvious that they weren't interested in participating in KHTML's ongoing development. But now that they've created a successful, portable, fork that's popular on a number of platforms (including KDE!) you have to admit that they made the right call.

Even so, forks are usually not a good thing. When you decide to fork an OS project, you're opting out of the original community, and basically telling them you don't care for where they're taking the project. It's like getting a divorce. Just as partners shouldn't break up their family the first time they get pissed at each other, it's dumb to pull out of a community just because they don't agree with all your priorities.

This is hard for many software people to understand, since they tend to have big opinions about little things. Which is why the Pidgin IM project got forked in a totally unnecessary squabble over a minor GUI feature that easily could have been made optional. Speaking of which, does anybody actually use the fork [sourceforge.net] ?

Re:This is a good thing for Mozilla/Firefox (1)

mrdoogee (1179081) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847183)

Indeed. In fact in the comic that they made, they thank the webkit team and mozilla. Anybody notice who they didn't acknowledge?

How to aim at MS? (1)

Nerdposeur (910128) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847191)

This isn't a shot fired at Firefox, it's aimed squarely at Redmond.

Well, it can be. If they're trying to capture users who think about their browser choice already, well, most of those people already ditched IE for FireFox or something else.

However, Google could put Chrome on the Google home page and get a lot of oblivious IE users to take notice.

While possibly unfair, that would be VERY interesting to see.

"even if it did catch them by surprise" (2, Interesting)

Neeth (887729) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846423)

Indeed. Nobody saw that coming. Google launching its own browser. Who would have thought that!

"It"? (4, Funny)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846469)

Because for it, Firefox being a top-tier application that was very successful - we now have 200 million users around the world - it could not afford to have Firefox run slowly on Vista.

I like that pronoun for Microsoft.

Not "them", or "they", and certainly not "he" or "she", but "it".

Re:"It"? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24847001)

It's traditional in the USA for companies to be referred to in the singular.

The real target: MS Office (5, Insightful)

davejenkins (99111) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846471)

It profits Google nothing to "kill" Firefox. I don't think that is their intended target. Besides, with both chrome and firefox being open source, there's nothing to stop Firefox from incorporating bits and pieces from Chrome wherever it makes sense.

IMHO, the real target is MS Office. Google makes their money from advertising, which means eyeballs and correlated data. Unfortunately for them, many people spend a majority of their day inside MS Word and MS Excel and other apps. Google would love to have those eyeballs and all that data to better shape their profiles and thus better deliver advertising. What better way than to get all those different apps to "occur" inside the browser?

Not worried? Perhaps they should be. (5, Insightful)

Millennium (2451) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846515)

For all that the Mozilla team isn't worried, they've got a long history of developers rejecting Gecko for other engines: first AOL rejected it in preference for IE (and then again on the Mac in preference for WebKit), then Apple (again for WebKit), and now Google (once again for WebKit). In the mobile space it isn't doing all that much better, with developers rejecting it in favor of Opera. In quite a few cases, including AOL and Google, we've even seen this rejection when the company previously had a history of active support for, and even paying developers to work on, the Gecko engine.

I use many browsers, though Firefox is currently my preferred one. But I can't help but pause at things like this. One after another, we've seen companies looking to developing their own browsers, but rejecting Gecko in favor of other engines, sometimes open-source and sometimes not, even when there was every reason to go with Gecko.

Why is this? I'm honestly curious. And what might Mozilla be able to do to counter whatever reasons there are for developers to often not just reject Gecko, but dump it flat after years of strong relationships? Why does Mozilla continue on as though nothing is wrong when the developers are voting with their products that something clearly is?

Re:Not worried? Perhaps they should be. (5, Insightful)

Pengo (28814) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846637)

This is an interesting observation. :)

My $.02 is everyone sees the real oppurtunity for growth is in the mobile market. It's not hard to see what apple has done with the iphone and Safari, it's simply peerless on the mobile space, as far as browsers go.

I'm sure this is the base for their work on their Android Platform, and establishing more development and market share for Webkit based browsers.

If it was only about the desktop, I'd be scratching my head wondering why they didn't go with Gecko, but it seems clear that Gecko is just too heavy for current generation of handhelds.

I was really wondering the same thing when Apple announced that they were using Webkit over Gecko when they first launch Safari, but now that their vision for the iphone has come to reality, it makes a lot more sense why they chose the platform they did. I just can't help but think that's exactly why google made a similar decision.

Re:Not worried? Perhaps they should be. (5, Informative)

Arkham (10779) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847011)

If you read the "comic [google.com] " that describes Chrome, you see that they plan to create a separate PROCESS per tab in the browser. Not a thread, an actual process. Gecko is quite heavy and likely would fare poorly in this space. Webkit by comparision is small enough to be used on the iPhone, Nokia S60 devices, and Android devices of various sizes. It's very compact, and its code base is easy to integrate and work with.

Mainly the OO model (5, Interesting)

brunes69 (86786) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846673)

If you have ever worked with the two engines you would not ask this question. Gecko is a huge mess of "OO in C" object model spaghetti. It is very hard for a new developer to get up to speed on or for development on individual areas to be compartmentalized.

Webkit, due to it's Qt/KDE origins, is very well designed from the ground up to be as API-clean OO as possible. It is therefore much lower barrier of entry for new developers to start up on, which is exactly what you are looking for when you are a company looking to roll out a browser.

Re:Not worried? Perhaps they should be. (2, Funny)

solafide (845228) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847149)

I've heard Firefox 4 will move to Webkit also. Gecko is dying. Netcraft confirms it.

Re:Not worried? Perhaps they should be. (1)

rtechie (244489) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847173)

Why is this?

Gecko is slow.

That's basically it. Webkit and other solutions outperform Gecko, especially on mobile phones and other devices with tight hardware limitations.

Re:Not worried? Perhaps they should be. (3, Informative)

CODiNE (27417) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847221)

Google and Apple both explained why they went with Webkit instead of Gecko.

Sorry I can't find the links at the moment but basically Apple said Konquerer as a base was much smaller and cleaner, easier to get started with and to work with than Gecko.

Google said the same thing, they went with Webkit for it's speed and ability to run well on low end computers, easy to hack.

trademark infringement (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24846559)

There is already a well known web browser technology called "chrome". It's an integral part of Mozilla web browsing technology. Confusion in the marketplace anyone?

Why Doesn't Google Just Contribute to Mozilla? (1)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846569)

[Google] wants Firefox to perform well with its applications, that's for sure. Indeed, it even wants IE to perform well with Gmail and the rest. It's just that it has very limited control over this.

Why doesn't Google just contribute code to Mozilla for Firefox that works well with Google's apps? It's not "control", but it's how open source projects work instead of control: leadership by coding. Since Google has 200M users who Mozilla's org is supporting rather than at Google's expense, why doesn't Google give back to the Mozilla project?

Is it all really because Google is at war with the Mozilla license?

Re:Why Doesn't Google Just Contribute to Mozilla? (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24846757)

Because it will expose the dirty little secret of FOSS & GPL.

Making Open source software using the default team organization isn't all that its cracked up to be. Open source needs "leads" or managers or in general people in command without whoom, nothing moves. Yes you can fork, but its effectively useless because nobody wants your branch. Mozilla already has them, the kernel has Linus. Without a little bit of the cathedral the bazaar will create only crappy products.

Google needs control so they can actually build a test team, drive quality up (seriously, even if you LOVE firefox to death, aren't you fed up with the crashes? I know I am, an I don't care whose fault it is)

-ex FF fan...

Re:Why Doesn't Google Just Contribute to Mozilla? (1)

Paradigm_Complex (968558) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846973)

It's more than just a little change here or an improvement there. There's some fundamental stuff it's doing differently (eg: new thread for each tab). I wouldn't be surprised if Google did talk to some people at Mozilla to see if they could implement such things in, say, fx4. I also wouldn't be surprised if Mozilla said no. They're choices were really limited to forking an existing browser or making one from scratch. With the number of changes it seems it may be easier to do the latter.

Re:Why Doesn't Google Just Contribute to Mozilla? (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847035)

This whole thing doesn't sit right with me. Google is too large, too powerful. It is open source, which is good, but there is just something really wrong with this. I have a feeling that we might start seeing Google extensions to HTML and Javascript, that won't be easily added to Mozilla/Gecko or IE...and a new battle on the web.

good or not, this is a bad thing (2, Insightful)

Zebra_X (13249) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846571)

The web already has four "major" browsers firefox, IE, safari and opera. Do we really need a new browser? Moreover, do we really need yet another partial implementation of the web standards?

I for one, do not want to code and test for another browser.

Not to mention that by using google's browser, you will give them unadulterated access to your every movement on the web.

Rendering engines, not browsers (5, Insightful)

Kelson (129150) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846671)

The web already has four "major" browsers firefox, IE, safari and opera.

More precisely, the web already has four major rendering engines: Gecko (used in Firefox), Trident (used in IE), WebKit (used in Safari), and Presto (used in Opera). Chrome is using WebKit, so it can leverage WebKit's existing standards support and all the pages that already work with Safari.

Scripting is going to be different, but HTML/CSS should (in theory) be pretty similar to Safari.

Re:good or not, this is a bad thing (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24846701)

As I understand it's based off webkit, which as I understand it means if it runs in Safari, it runs in Chrome.

As for google tracking people... it may be their goal, but if they get too intrusive (and even if people just like zero intrusion), it's open source. Someone will remove the code they don't like and viola! All the features, none of the mess.

Re:good or not, this is a bad thing (1)

elcid73 (599126) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846723)

This is the whole point of Open Source is it not? Shouldn't we be focusing on web standards? Who wants to limit ourselves to two or three browsers? I thought we were supposed to be freeing ourselves of vendor lock in. What good is Open Source if we can't deviate from it?

Re:good or not, this is a bad thing (1)

Ostracus (1354233) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846801)

"The web already has four "major" browsers firefox, IE, safari and opera"

I'm waiting for a GIS browser. Or a browser that supports X3D.

Re:good or not, this is a bad thing (2, Interesting)

escay (923320) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846909)

we don't want another browser, if it's more of the same.

Chrome is not.

It is developed from scratch with a completely new approach on how a browser should be. This doesn't necessarily mean that Chrome will be better than Firefox/Opera/Safari - it just means that it will be entirely different. Chrome could be a total disaster, or maybe google gets it right this time and we see Chrome being widely adopted.

Either way, i'm just plain happy that people still believe innovation is worth some effort and risk, instead of taking the easy road and photocopying.

Can't this help standards? (2, Interesting)

Nerdposeur (910128) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846937)

The web already has four "major" browsers firefox, IE, safari and opera. Do we really need a new browser? Moreover, do we really need yet another partial implementation of the web standards?

I for one, do not want to code and test for another browser.

I feel your pain regarding multi-browser testing. But it seems like implementing standards - and having them clarified where needed - will only become more important as the number of browsers increases.

Also, the more open source browsers we have, the more transparent those implementations become - further fueling the standards conversation.

Maybe one day soon IE will be the only browser that major sites DON'T work on. And then it will have to conform.

Re:good or not, this is a bad thing (1)

pH03n1X (859019) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846957)

The web already has four "major" browsers firefox, IE, safari and opera. Do we really need a new browser?

Most of these browsers have a history and evolution associated with them, which prevents adding cool new features ( e.g. each tab as a separate process ) is not possible without a major code rewrite/redesign

Moreover, do we really need yet another partial implementation of the web standards?

I for one, do not want to code and test for another browser.

They are using WebKit, so it's not adding to the confusion

Not to mention that by using google's browser, you will give them unadulterated access to your every movement on the web.

It is open source, so the possibility of them adding any sort of google specific tracking is close to zero ( or else it would get forked ).

Re:good or not, this is a bad thing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24847005)

ha ! I suggest you look up who is paying mozilla :)

Re:good or not, this is a bad thing (0, Troll)

rtechie (244489) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847205)

Stop panicking, Chrome uses Webkit. It's basically just a skin for Safari, like Konquerer.

Re:good or not, this is a bad thing (1)

Alascom (95042) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847207)

>Not to mention that by using google's browser, you will give them unadulterated access to your every movement on the web.

Yeah, because Google's Chrome browser has cookies which they can use to track you around the web, and other browsers don't... uh...

Its a browser dude, take off the tinfoil.

Beating around the bush... (3, Insightful)

oldhack (1037484) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846597)

How's Mozilla's finance? What sources of fund for them other than Google? How much does this nudge the relationship balance between Mozilla and Google?

Re:Beating around the bush... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24846833)

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13505_3-10028067-16.html [cnet.com]

They've renewed their funding less than a week ago for another 3 years. Either they're planning something malicious, or they really don't care what browser people use, so long as the applications get developed. (which is google's primary mission - providing content, not competing in the browser area, hence open source and standards compliant.)

For me it is about browser plugin and OS support (4, Interesting)

jackspenn (682188) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846619)

I have used FireFox almost exclusively for about 2 years. What got me started on FireFox was I wanted the same browser feel despite what OS I was on (Windows or Linux). So it was the cross OS support that got me into FireFox, but what has kept me using it is the vast plugin support. One of my favorite being Foxmarks. (but Foxmarks is coming out for IE eventually, I am now alpha testing on IE). Anyway, so I look at Chrome and wonder will it met these two key needs and if it is as good as FireFox will that be any reason to switch? So I can see that it will be cross OS, but to be better the FireFox, but the next question is will it take it a step further, will it work on my Blackberry or other mobile PDAs? That would be the motivator to get me looking, but to solidify a change, I would need the plugin options the FireFox currently has and others like IE are lacking. Can Google do it? I think they have a great shot.

Re:For me it is about browser plugin and OS suppor (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24846813)

I have used FireFox almost exclusively for about 2 years.

And in all that time, you've never noticed that the second F isn't capitalized?

Re:For me it is about browser plugin and OS suppor (1)

duggi (1114563) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847165)

You nailed it sir. I tried lots of other browsers, including lynx. I am home with mozilla, my live bookmarks work fine, and i can afford to use it as i like , with my work specific extensions. get me a cooliris on chorme, then we can begin talking. I would download and install chrome though, just for the fun of it.

What they really thought (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24846683)

"Tin katsame", they said to themselves.

Like a fish in the hot sun... (1, Funny)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846689)

Let me be the first to say FIREFOX IS DEAD, BLOATED AND SMELLY LIKE A DEAD FISH, DEAD! Netcraft says so. No, but seriously, how long until Mozilla's Google Dollars dry up?

Re:Like a fish in the hot sun... (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846897)

Probably only after Google stops making money on Firefox eyeballs. Presumably this will be the earlier of the death of internet advertising or never.

Re:Like a fish in the hot sun... (1)

AndrewNeo (979708) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847107)

Another three years, at least, apparently.

No awesomebar? Good. (0)

amaupin (721551) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846715)

If Google can release a lighter browser without all the cruft and bloat of Firefox, I'll definitely give it a chance.

Re:No awesomebar? Good. (3, Informative)

swimin (828756) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846875)

Chrome has an Omni Bar which is very similar to the awesome bar.

Re:No awesomebar? Good. (1)

Deanalator (806515) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846995)

I believe they refer to is as the "omnibar"

Re:No awesomebar? Good. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24847093)

There are many Webkit powered browwwsers already and they feel lighter than Fofie.

Good chance against Mozilla (5, Informative)

GeekDork (194851) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846817)

Perhaps a team that isn't forced to respect ass-backwards coding guidelines [mozilla.org] can attempt to produce something fast and reasonably safe, instead of spending all their time optimizing code for Visual C++ 1.5.

Seriously, Mozilla has their heads so far up the ass that is an ancient codebase, and is extremely slow at fixing the numerous bugs that have shown up over the ages, that I see little chance for them to be a significant competitor in the future, unless they manage to clean up their act in a major way instead of shoving out incremental updates as major versions.

Wrong layer (4, Insightful)

Brandybuck (704397) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846857)

Some of the ideas for Chrome are good ones. But a lot of them seem to be reinventing the operating system. From Google's perspective the browser is the operating system, but that's not the real world. We used to joke about Linux being a boot loader for Emacs, but soon we're going to have to joke about Linux being a boot loader for Google!

Here's a big shocker: not everything is a web app! No really. There are problems operating systems solved decades ago that Chrome is just now gettng around to fixing, just because some people want their apps to be on the web. You can have distributed apps and ubiquitous data *without* HTML/CSS/ECMA/Ajax/Flash. Back when computers were so expensive no one could afford their own, everything was distributed. Now that computers are cheap enough that everyone has two or three, the industry is wondering how to distribute stuff.

Re:Wrong layer (1)

blue.strider (737082) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847143)

We used to joke about Linux being a boot loader for Emacs, but soon we're going to have to joke about Linux being a boot loader for Google!

I see no joke. The job of the operating system is to provide a hardware abstraction layer, the job of an application platform is to make development better. Via KISS principle, the two domains are better served by (at least) two different layers.

Re:Wrong layer (4, Insightful)

shelterpaw (959576) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847225)

You're right. Not everything is a web application. But to google it is. Chrome will allow them to make sure they have browser support for all of their enterprise applications. This includes offline and mobile applications. It would certainly suck to be a large web platform company, but have to wait for others to support your innovative technology. This way they can implement what they want and allow others to catch-up.

This will certainly cut into sales of Firefox... (0, Redundant)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846887)

Oh. Wait...

Firefox doesn't run well on mobile platforms... (1)

Anik315 (585913) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846915)

The real reason they probably went with WebKit as opposed to Gecko is because Gecko doesn't work very well on mobile platforms. Google probably wants to compete with Apple's iPhone and it makes sense to have integrated platform for web applications that works exectly the same mobile phones as on desktop PCs.

Sigh (1, Insightful)

the computer guy nex (916959) | more than 6 years ago | (#24846951)

How many developers are rooting for this NOT to catch on?

Firefox has done the deed of putting pressure on MS to move their browser forward. The only thing this will cause is more testing time for developers.

Re:Sigh (2, Interesting)

spohnsoftware (963349) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847009)

??? I, for one, a long time developer hopes this does catch on. A browser for all platforms, specifically mobile phones, that works well! I am all for it. Having a standard set of APIs across these platforms, which remains to be seen, would also be a welcome addition. Trying to construct applications across these areas is difficult at best. This will hopefully break that barrier.

Organizing Boomarks is the weak link for me (1)

ExternalDingus (951990) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847013)

This is the only element of browsers I have found really lacking.. the ability to organize a large amount of bookmarks and find bookmarks in the sea of bookmarks I have stored. I really hope someone addresses this. Another feature I think could be done more with is NOTES. Opera has a nice note feature but it could be a lot better. I like to copy many of the articles I read and save them as notes. But Opera doesn't have a way to bakc this up very well. I worked out a alternative but it's not great.

It wasn't a suprise to Mozilla either (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24847037)

They were well aware of this for a long time now.

http://thetruthaboutmozilla.wordpress.com

But I thought (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24847049)

I thought their business was providing search of the web...

or wait, maps of everything...

or pictures of everything...

or hosting of everything...

Oh, and access to everything.

{mozilla thinks..} (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24847073)

Doh. Google Chrome. Checkmate. 10 moves ahead. Open solaris. Everybody switching to Qt including us. Chairs!

Browser Technology Used used in Google Chrome (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24847171)

I've seen comments on here that WebKit was used? Is this true? Why wasn't gecko considered?

Or is it just a branded version of Firefox with a few tweeks?

Remember what the Debian and GNU folks called theirs Ice Weasel / IceCat.

Google maps (-1, Offtopic)

Captain Murdock (906610) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847177)

Can anyone tell me why google maps does not work for me with firefox?

Mozilla should be worried (5, Interesting)

Dan100 (1003855) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847185)

Reading through the comic it's pretty obvious what Chrome is about. Google clearly feel that web apps have hit something of a wall running on existing browsers, and that they need to take the drastic action of releasing a new browser with a new architecture to move things on. The V8 javascript engine is clearly to enable larger and more complex applications, and the thread-per-tab architecture means larger and more complex apps can be run without risking the whole browser.

Microsoft either got wind of what Google were planning or came to the same conclusions, thus the new architecture in IE8 (and the IE javascript engine is not as bad as it's made out to be, it just underperforms badly with string processing [codinghorror.com] ).

Mozilla (and maybe Opera) may well struggle to compete with Microsoft and Google here. Opera have shown that they do have the resources to develop new rendering and javascript engines, but Mozilla are still using a Gecko that has changed little in years apart from tweaking. It may well be the case that in a year or two we'll be seeing much more advanced web apps which Mozilla browsers handle poorly.

Opera loves you anyway (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24847199)

Tabs above the address bar: check.
Drag tabs around: check.
Omnibox: check.
Run search from the omnibox: check.
New tab page: check.
Per-site privacy: check.
Easy wipe-out of cache and history: check.
Full-screen, no-chrome view: check.
Malware checks: check.

It's nice to see someone's finally gotten around to copying Opera. Here's my list of other things I'd like to see Google copy from Opera:

1. A *customizable* new tab page.

2. Customization in general. Good defaults are good, but Google has continual FAIL at (a) actually giving good defaults, and (b) allowing you to alter the defaults when it makes sense.

3. Mouse gestures and keyboard shortcuts.

4. Sessions, not just bookmarks.

5. CSS style overrides. JS scripting overrides.

6. Little view enhancements, like fit-to-screen and zoom.

7. Per-site preferences.

8. Skins, so I can keep the interface out of the way of my browsing, and so my mother can have her puppy themes.

(Also, could Opera please look into adopting the V8 JavaScript engine? That looks like it might be pretty sweet.)

Here's a crucial thing this browser should (5, Insightful)

melted (227442) | more than 6 years ago | (#24847213)

Here's a crucial thing this browser should have: Mozilla-like extensibility, so that I could install the things without which I can't imagine a browser anymore:

1. Ad blocker (AdBlock Plus)
2. Developer extensions
3. Debugger (Firebug)
4. FTP (FireFTP)
5. Javascript extensibility (Greasemonkey)

Of course they'll be called something else, but without this set (and particularly #1), they might as well forget about it.

Bye bye Firefox (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24847219)

The only way Google can get a foothold with their Firefox look-alike is to pay PC makers to install their browser. That would provoke a response from Microsoft to do the same. Firefox will get left out in the cold - Google Chrome users won't be coming from IE, they'll be stealing market share from Firefox. End of Firefox. Period. Open source projects can only exist where 1) the technology is mature, with few changes from release to release, and 2) there exists a fair number of folks who just want to be different and go with crap like Linux (which they laughingly claim is a reliable OS). Open source seldom produces anything new - they have all they can handle simply trying to keep up, which they really aren't capable of doing.
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