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A Closer Look At Chromium and Browser Security

Soulskill posted about 5 years ago | from the such-as-it-is dept.

Security 109

GhostX9 writes "Tom's Hardware's continuing series on computing security has an interview with Adam Barth and Collin Jackson, members of Stanford University's Web Security Group and members of the team that developed Chromium, the open-source core behind Google Chrome. The interview goes into detail regarding the sandboxing approach unique to Chromium, comparisons between the browser and its competition, and web security in general."

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109 comments

FFX all the way (-1, Offtopic)

switch.au (1297775) | about 5 years ago | (#27622963)

FFX has cute logo tough :)

Re:FFX all the way (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27623093)

Yeah, Final Fantasy 10 *does* have a cute logo. What, Yuna doesn't count as a logo? What about Lulu?

Good (4, Insightful)

maz2331 (1104901) | about 5 years ago | (#27623109)

These are all great ideas, and I hope Firefox and/or MSIE pick up on them, simply because I can't stand the Chrome UI.

Sorry, but that thing just isn't what a browser is supposed to be.

The uhderlying technology can be the greatest ever, but if the interface sucks, well, I won't use it.

Re:Good (5, Informative)

mhousser (1359089) | about 5 years ago | (#27623177)

I love the interface! What I don't love, however, are the millions of ads that I forgot existed. I'll move to Chrome the minute it supports plugins and AdBlocker is ported to it. Chrome's plugin API will be finished later this year.

Re:Good (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27623227)

It supports greasemonkey scripts if you append --enable-user-scripts to its shortcut. And theres a script for it that works exactly like adblock.

Re:Good (2, Insightful)

malkir (1031750) | about 5 years ago | (#27624701)

So you're just going to open a huge security hole in the process? You shouldn't have to sacrifice!

Re:Good (1)

julesh (229690) | about 5 years ago | (#27625665)

So you're just going to open a huge security hole in the process? You shouldn't have to sacrifice!

OK, let's here it: why is user scripting a security hole?

Re:Good (4, Informative)

asdf7890 (1518587) | about 5 years ago | (#27626197)

OK, let's here it: why is user scripting a security hole?

With early versions of GreaseMonkey, the way the user scripts were applied to pages would allow the page to affect easily the GM in ways that could lead to cross-site attack vectors.

That is why GM had a fairly complete redesign around the middle of 2005, remove the issue(s) that affected all scripts, but individual scripts can still be vulnerable depending on their design - hence you should be careful not to let a script apply globally for security reasons as well as efficiency ones. For a decent description of the problems with earlier GM versions and problems that you can still create for yourself in the latest versions, this article [oreillynet.com] does a decent job.

The other major problem with user scripting is using scripts from other sources without performing an exhaustive code review first. How do you know that the script you have just enabled isn't subject to one of the flaws? How do you know it isn't intentionally malicious? There have been several cases of this in the past, hence the warning message before you add a script to GM in recent versions and the warning message that appeared on userscipts.org for some time (as malicious scripts were found in their archive).

Like many things, user scripting isn't a problem if both programmers and users are educated, careful and care. There lies the problem.

I use GM myself, with scripts of my own devising or those from elsewhere that I have sufficiently reviewed, but I would not recommend it (or equivalents) to the general populous as they do not need any further ways to dig themselves into a malware riddled hole.

Re:Good (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27627847)

User scripts have capabilities that are a strict subset of those that other Firefox extensions have, or even those of normal installed software.

So if you don't recommend user scripts for the general populace, you *certainly* shouldn't recommend extensions or other software.

Re:Good (2, Insightful)

Genocaust (1031046) | about 5 years ago | (#27623233)

I like others, also love the UI. It took some getting used to over Firefox, but I do like the clean look of being able to focus on actual content -- not the browser itself.
As to Adblock, yeah, wow, there are a lot of ads out there I didn't even know existed! Using OpenDNS I manage to block most of them just by domain through their blacklist service, though. It's not perfect, but better than nothing for now!

Re:Good (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27625375)

There are 2 features of chrome that have annoyed me to the point of recently switching back to Firefox.

1. When you scroll it scrolls like half a page at a time, rather than 3 lines at a time like every other browser. There is a setting in windows for how many lines an app should scroll when you scroll the mouse - why doesn't chrome follow this?

2. Also have you noticed that when you close chrome, any downloads get cancelled and there's no way to resume them without restarting the download. And the only way to restart them is to right click, copy the link, then paste that link back in the address bar.

Firefox is a little slower (but not much) but it works. Please fix these things Google/chromium team!

Adblock for Chrome -- Use SwWare Iron "Chrome" (5, Interesting)

blahbooboo (839709) | about 5 years ago | (#27623239)

Srware Iron is Chrome compiled without all the Google spyware crap and it has adblock built in.

I LOVE IT! Firefox (all versions) is sooooo slow compared to Chrome/Iron.

http://www.srware.net/en/software_srware_iron.php [srware.net]

Re:Adblock for Chrome -- Use SwWare Iron "Chrome" (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27623485)

I just used that, went to the Slashdot Home page and began scrolling up and down, which made my computer lagged. CPU usage spiked heaps.

It's a good idea, and I hope they can improve it, but for now, it's not as good.

So alas I will continue to run both Chrome (for gmail and gcal) and FireFox (for everything else).

Re:Adblock for Chrome -- Use SwWare Iron "Chrome" (1)

blahbooboo (839709) | about 5 years ago | (#27623539)

I just used that, went to the Slashdot Home page and began scrolling up and down, which made my computer lagged. CPU usage spiked heaps.

It's a good idea, and I hope they can improve it, but for now, it's not as good.

So alas I will continue to run both Chrome (for gmail and gcal) and FireFox (for everything else).

Weird, works perfectly for me.

Re:Adblock for Chrome -- Use SwWare Iron "Chrome" (1)

smartbei (1112351) | about 5 years ago | (#27625979)

This actually happens to me using FireFox - though perhaps due to the computer having a decent processor (Core 2 Duo) it is fast enough that it isn't a bother.

Re:Adblock for Chrome -- Use SwWare Iron "Chrome" (3, Interesting)

sortius_nod (1080919) | about 5 years ago | (#27623525)

So what about its adblock, the thing doesn't render pages correctly. From what I can tell it is a badly compiled version of chrome.

When they get it right, then I might think about using it... uninstall time.

Re:Adblock for Chrome -- Use SwWare Iron "Chrome" (3, Interesting)

blahbooboo (839709) | about 5 years ago | (#27623545)

So what about its adblock, the thing doesn't render pages correctly. From what I can tell it is a badly compiled version of chrome.

When they get it right, then I might think about using it... uninstall time.

I get some weird font smoothing occassionally on Slashdot, otherwise works perfectly for me. It's so blazing fast when I go back to Firefox I am shocked how agonizingly slow the browser is to render pages...

Re:Adblock for Chrome -- Use SwWare Iron "Chrome" (1)

Eighty7 (1130057) | about 5 years ago | (#27626147)

Are you using the current version 3.08, i think? I've tested it on my two computers & I honestly can't see a difference. I had to load js animations at chromeexperiments to see a difference.

Re:Adblock for Chrome -- Use SwWare Iron "Chrome" (1)

blahbooboo (839709) | about 5 years ago | (#27626409)

Using the 3.1b3 firefox. Pages are instantly rendered in Chrome, Firefox takes forever. I see this on multiple computers.

Javascript performance doesn't matter, its the engine rendering speed that is the differentiator.

Re:Adblock for Chrome -- Use SwWare Iron "Chrome" (1)

msimm (580077) | about 5 years ago | (#27623549)

I'm sure this has been pointed out else where, but thanks for the tip. It's a nice browser without the crap.

Re:Adblock for Chrome -- Use SwWare Iron "Chrome" (2, Insightful)

mcrbids (148650) | about 5 years ago | (#27624219)

rware Iron is Chrome compiled without all the Google spyware crap and it has adblock built in.

Unfortunately, they don't have a download in RPM or source form, so I can't install it on my Fedora Core 10 laptop.

Without *nix support, Chrome(ium) is a non-starter.

Re:Adblock for Chrome -- Use SwWare Iron "Chrome" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27624953)

Incorrect - has source code on download page.

Re:Adblock for Chrome -- Use SwWare Iron "Chrome" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27624925)

Thanks for the link man. I'm sick of firefox cause of its slowness, but I was also getting sick of Chrome, so this should be a good alternative.

Does anyone have the following problems I have with Chrome?

(1) It freezes up continually, and when it does freeze up, it effects the entire computer.

(2) When accidently clicking on a PDF link the entire thing crashes, and computer freezes up.

I love chrome cause of its speed, but goddamn. The amount of restarts of my computer I've had with it I'm seriously looking for another browser (NOT firefox).

Re:Adblock for Chrome -- Use SwWare Iron "Chrome" (3, Interesting)

blahbooboo (839709) | about 5 years ago | (#27625013)

Thanks for the link man. I'm sick of firefox cause of its slowness, but I was also getting sick of Chrome, so this should be a good alternative.

Does anyone have the following problems I have with Chrome?

(1) It freezes up continually, and when it does freeze up, it effects the entire computer.

(2) When accidently clicking on a PDF link the entire thing crashes, and computer freezes up.

I love chrome cause of its speed, but goddamn. The amount of restarts of my computer I've had with it I'm seriously looking for another browser (NOT firefox).

Are you using Adobe Acrobat for PDFs? That's likely your problem and not the browser.

Uninstall that crap and use Foxit PDF Reader instead.

Re:Good (3, Informative)

cryptoluddite (658517) | about 5 years ago | (#27623283)

Chromifox [mozilla.org] makes firefox look a lot like Chrome. Chrome is a nice toy, but it's UI is pretty lacking when you want to do something like maximize screen space on a 1024x600 screen.

Re:Good (1)

Anpheus (908711) | about 5 years ago | (#27623767)

F11.

It works on Chrome's Dev branch, which any self-respecting slashdotter would use to provide useful feedback to the developers of Chrome.

Re:Good (2)

cryptoluddite (658517) | about 5 years ago | (#27624011)

In firefox I can go full screen, but still keep the URL bar, so I know what site I'm on. I can get a menu bar by pressing Alt once. I can put the NoScript button on the URL bar. I can even put a button to toggle fullscreen, since it's often easier to trackpad to a button than find F11 on a small non-backlit keyboard. Or firefox can drop down this UI when the cursor is at the top.

Chrome can do none of these things, even in the current beta version. The UI in many ways is restrictive and lacks many niceties. You can still like it and prefer it, that's fine, but let's be honest. Perhaps I should have said "maximize space while still being usable", but some common sense is in order here.

Re:Good (2, Informative)

i.of.the.storm (907783) | about 5 years ago | (#27623341)

There is actually something handy called AdSweep [adsweep.org] that works with Chrome, but it's not regex based like Adblockplus so it seems to only work on sites that are built into it. It's better than nothing, I guess, but there are still about 300 other things that Firefox does for me that Chrome is far from doing, and a lot of them hinge on a good extension platform. I just don't think it can get better than XUL/js for extension writing.

Re:Good (2, Interesting)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 5 years ago | (#27623343)

Maybe instead of complaining about a browser that displays ads, you might want to stop visiting websites that have intrusive and overwhelming ads.

I use Slashdot and Chrome and don't see any ads because I'm a subscriber, but even if I wasn't, the low number of ads here is one reason I like it.

Re:Good (2, Informative)

cbrocious (764766) | about 5 years ago | (#27623839)

If you use Privoxy [privoxy.org], the majority of those ads will go away, and you can do custom filtering for fun and profit easily.

Re:Good (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27625035)

Stop looking up gay porn and you wont get ads

fuckwit

Re:Good (1)

dave420 (699308) | about 5 years ago | (#27625639)

Don't visit sites with adverts, and you're set. But I guess you think it's fine to visit sites that you want to visit, and not have to see adverts which pay for the content you clearly want. Lovely.

Re:Good (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27628321)

It is fine. If those sites don't want people "stealing" their bandwidth by not viewing their ads, they should move to a subscription model or just password their site.

It's my computer, it's my browser. I have a right to alter any content that gets displayed to me.

Re:Good (1)

ksd1337 (1029386) | about 5 years ago | (#27628151)

Why would a company who makes most its profit on ads willingly allow users of its browser to subvert its main source of money?

Re:Good (1)

AdmiralXyz (1378985) | about 5 years ago | (#27623211)

Um... this is an opinion that many other people definitely do not share. I for one love the ability to focus on the web content, rather than the mess of toolbars to be found on other browsers.

Re:Good (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27623231)

The uhderlying technology can be the greatest ever, but if the interface sucks, well, I won't use it.

That describes in a nutshell why OS/2 never caught on big.

Re:Good (2)

drolli (522659) | about 5 years ago | (#27623591)

Insightful? The OS/2 interface was extremely consistent and extremely configurable. e.g. make a template for a file which containe certain context menu options. etc...

Re:Good (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27623707)

I've always felt that the OS/2 UI was far superior to the Windows versions of the time (3.x/95). Heck, it makes more sense to me then Windows Vista/7 does.

Re:Good (1)

anss123 (985305) | about 5 years ago | (#27627497)

I tried OS/2 Warp4 recently and hated it. The whole menu bar on top is cluttered, glad it never caught on.

Re:Good (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27623313)

UI is the easy part. I'm sure Google will allow skinning or something in the future, and if not then someone should add it to the source - it is open afterall.

Re:Good (2, Informative)

coryking (104614) | about 5 years ago | (#27624095)

UI is the easy part.

Yeah, right. If the UI was the easy part, why do almost all UI's suck?

skinning

If you think skins are gonna fix a UI, I've got news for you. Having the ability to add girls sitting on the hoods of of cars wearing tightly clad bikinis does not make a good UI.

Re:Good (1)

Bert64 (520050) | about 5 years ago | (#27624997)

Skinning seems to hurt performance, a lot...
Take any app where skinning was added later, and compare the old and new versions side by side... windows media player is a good example since it would leave the old unskinnable version installed when you installed the skinnable version 7, on a machine in those days (p3/600) i had a bunch of video files which would play fine in the old player, and skip when using the new one.

Re:Good (1)

v(*_*)vvvv (233078) | about 5 years ago | (#27623513)

I agree the interface is lacking, but that is why I can whole heartedly recommend it to all my novice friends and family. It is secure, it is simple, and it does exactly what people who know little about computers want to do - get online and go to a specific web site.

Gmail is also great. Simple, secure, and uncluttered. Create an app icon and add it to the start menu, and you have a very simple email solution. The only problem I have though is their grouping of threads, which is unnecessary. That should be a lab feature if any. And why can't they just add folders? Who cares which is better. Some people just want folders, not labels, and if its so easy to give it to them, denying it is selfish. Just give it up, and give people what they want!

Re:Good (2, Informative)

voidphoenix (710468) | about 5 years ago | (#27624101)

Gmail is also great. Simple, secure, and uncluttered. Create an app icon and add it to the start menu, and you have a very simple email solution. The only problem I have though is their grouping of threads, which is unnecessary. That should be a lab feature if any. And why can't they just add folders? Who cares which is better. Some people just want folders, not labels, and if its so easy to give it to them, denying it is selfish. Just give it up, and give people what they want!

Labels can work _exactly_ like folders if that's all you want. The main difference is that a message can be in more than one "folder" if you need it to be.

Re:Good (1)

v(*_*)vvvv (233078) | about 5 years ago | (#27624489)

Right. Except such explaining and adjusting is precisely what is inconvenient to someone who already learned how to use folders over a long period of time, and isn't very competent with computers.

Labels can work _exactly_ like folders if that's all you want. The main difference is that a message can be in more than one "folder" if you need it to be.

You might be surprised at how hard this sentence is for some people to comprehend.

Re:Good (1)

lgw (121541) | about 5 years ago | (#27627987)

Labels can work _exactly_ like folders if that's all you want.

You can use labels in GMail to create subfolders? How do you do that?

Re:Good (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27623663)

Huh? Horrible UI? Beats Firefox hands down.

Re:Good (1)

evanspw (872471) | about 5 years ago | (#27626387)

when the preferences can set fonts that override the fonts specified in the page (which firefox can do) then i will be happy with chrome. fucked if i'm going to look at some dipshit's site in Times...

Re:Good (3, Interesting)

similar_name (1164087) | about 5 years ago | (#27623785)

My biggest complaint about the interface is it unnecessarily creates its own window/title bar. As such I can't use RBtray on it to keep Chrome windows 'always on top'. Which I like to do so I can stick a hulu window in the corner of my screen while I'm browsing.

Re:Good (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27624429)

For the majority of browser security as of late, JavaScript seems to be the culprit of causing malware to even professional IT people due to browsing habits and such. Chrome will and had made this far worse by not allowing a user to pick web scripts to run. I use Firefox with NoScript addon, which gives options to enable JavaScript individually on page or by an icon that reveals all sites with scripts. Since this has eliminated virtually all browser vulnerabilities (except for user stupidity), I dislike all or nothing browsers.

This is the easiest reason to explain to switch to the Firefox browser with NoScript addon. Yeah, it becomes easy to get people away from Chrome too.

Note: You can pry IT admins away from Chrome if you mention how many additional services google uses when not using Chrome and how it wants to call home often.

Re:Good (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27624921)

ie. Spread FUD and then people don't use it.

I don't know any other large software company that spreads FUD about open source operating systems and who regularly gets criticised for doing so.

Chrome installs the Google Updater - an open source app that typically used 600KB of RAM and is a benefit to users who aren't tech savvy as it updates all Google programmes without user involvement.

Re:Good (1)

Bert64 (520050) | about 5 years ago | (#27625027)

And the google updater (alongside the apple updater, adobe updated, and whatever else updater) you have running only exist to get around a flaw in windows - the lack of a consistent package management system such as apt. If you install enough apps with updaters on windows they will eventually bog your system down real badly, and start using your bandwidth when you least expect it.

Re:Good (1)

lgw (121541) | about 5 years ago | (#27628033)

That's a very interesting point - I'm not sure that apt is the right model, but why am I not updating all of my commercial software through the add/remove programs UI? Or perhaps instead through Microsoft Update, since I go there every second Tuesday anyhow. Microsoft has clearly found a way to patch arbitrary apps, as most MS products now update through Microsoft Update.

Re:Good (1)

weicco (645927) | about 5 years ago | (#27624677)

I read Playing in the sandbox - page and I really don't see what is so great in there compared to IE on Vista. Same NTFS Access Control Lists are used as any other Windows application. And I'm not 100% sure about this, but doesn't Chrome run on user privileges when IE (on Vista) uses more restricted privileges?

My understanding is that you can't totally sandbox browser unless you do it on kernel level like FreeBSD jail does. And even then browser must be able to access user files if user wants to upload something to the internet, and cookies of course.

Allthough I've been known to be wrong :)

Re:Good (2, Interesting)

Bert64 (520050) | about 5 years ago | (#27625019)

I used to run a browser in a chroot on linux, partly because i had a 64bit system but needed some 32bit plugins (java, flash) and partly for the security benefit...
In terms of user files, you simply leave them in the sandbox, the host system can access the sandbox but the sandbox can't access the host which is how it should be.

Re:Good (1)

f()rK()_Bomb (612162) | about 5 years ago | (#27625621)

Since Chrome was the only browser left standing in the Pwn2Own contest, i think its pretty obvious that their sandboxing is vastly superior to IE.

Re:Good (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27625733)

To be fair, Pwn2own used a beta version of IE.

Still, I recently tried IE8 and found one thing that was highly annoying. I turned off the command bar, but it has no way to turn it back on. Right click context menu doesn't work on the toolbars and the option to turn it back on in the view menu is greyed out. This is a huge bug and I'm not sure how it was missed in QA.

Re:Good (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27625655)

Chrome's superior safety comes from the independence between tabs :

- Each tab is a separate process (i.e no memory sharing with other tabs)
- Each tab runs it's own copy of JavaScript

The process-per-tab design also has the major advantage that if one web site is slow or hanging it won't affect the other tabs at all as it does in most other browsers where the whole browser can lock up while a slow page is loading.

Re:Good (1)

blind biker (1066130) | about 5 years ago | (#27624751)

Firefox won't pick up on those ideas in the foreseable future, perhaps never. I hope you enjoy your IE experience!

(for the record, I think the Crhome UI is excellent. Nothing superfluous, and rather pleasant to look at)

You can't stand the Chrome UI!!!!! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27623263)

And neither can I. Rob Malda (aka Cmdtaco) is not what many would consider "the ideal candidate" for a dot-com start-up. He started his career as a C++ coder for a major manufacturer, but then quit to pursue a mathematics degree in Canada. That didn't quite do it for him either, as he then dropped out to pursue something far more interesting: canoe from Calgary to New Orleans. But after 1,200+ miles of rowing, his journey ended in Minneapolis with a cracked butt and a frozen river. Temporarily, of course, as he plans to pick up and continue south someday soon.

All that said, Malda was pretty excited when he received his first response to all the resumes he'd been sending out to various tech companies. He immediately called back to schedule an interview and was pleasantly surprised at how flexible the interviewer was: Malda could "stop by any time."

After shaving his pubic area smooth and putting on his interview clothes (leather pants, leather boots and leather vest, steel nipple rings and nothing else), Malda hopped on a bus, transferred to a few other busses, and, after almost two hours, finally reached his destination. It was a residential apartment complex that had obviously seen better days.

When he knocked on the door of "Suite 318," Malda was greeted by Michael Simms, a spry-looking man in his 50's with glasses precariously perched on his conical head and a face a few days past shaved. Upon entering the squalid apartment, the first thing Malda noticed was the rotten stench of ejaculate-stained underwear haphazardly strewn across the living room. There and a blue tarp hung over the south-facing window, blocking the sun and a view of the Mississippi river. "For my little get-togethers" Michael Simms explained using quote marks with his fingers. "Can't have the neighbors looking in now can we?" The second was Michael Simms sitting down on a computer, firing up a popular MMO. He was completey nude. Malda stared unabashedly at the sight; Michael's tumescence was incredible.

"You see this," Simms said, avatar running towards the closed city gate, "when you get to the door you have to wait while the game loads the next area. You should just be able to see out through it."

Taking this as the "technical" portion of the interview, Malda started to explain about how he would implement dynamically loading regions. Malda was very clear that, while he had never written something like that before, he was certainly aware of the basic concepts involved.

"Now, look. He just runs right through the tree. Right through it! You see that?" He harrumphed and turned toward Malda with a look like someone died. "Motherfucker! I'll fucking kill you!" Rob shouted.

"Now now, Rob, that will never do. You'll suck my penis to erection and then take it in your sweet little anus until it's time to dump a load of Uncle my special sauce down your slick throat, and you'll like it!"

With this Simms cocked the hammer of his gun and pointed it at Rob's mouth and began forcing his jaw open with the barrel as he poured the JÃffgermeister, thick and dark and brown, into Rob's mouth. He trickled some onto his bush and penis for good measure and jammed his thin cock into Rob's mouth. Rob took it to the hilt.

"That's a good little faggot. You take all of Uncle Eric's junk and you like it!" Eric said as he began pumping his cock in and out of Rob's mouth. Simms's bulbous white gut hovered menacingly over Rob's face like a full moon and his ruddy pubes tickled Rob's nose. The gun barrel wavered at Rob's eyes.

Rob moaned as Simms grunted his pleasures into the back of Rob's throat.

"Now Rob, I want you to look me in the eyes. Rob's beady eyes connected with Michael's pale blue irises, tears welling in his eyelids as Simms's crotch continued its assault. "I have with me a funnel, Rob, and you're going to take it in your ass. This old cock of mine needs a little lube and we're going to pack your rec-room full of something quite slippery!" Simms said as his eyes grew wide. He shook his bottle of JÃffgermeister again as he helped Rob pull his pants off.

With a pop Michael removed his pulsating cock, slick with spit, from Rob's hungry mouth as Rob turned over onto all fours, his back arched and ass swaying in the air. Simms's little orange funnel entered Rob's anus without complaint as he began pouring the brown fluid. Rob shivered.

"Good boy, Rob. Good boy." Simms moaned as he rammed his dong home into Rob's familiar rectum. "Reeeal goooood..."

Rob cried out in pain as Simms put his full weight into each and every thrust, Rob's hairy ass-cheeks spread further and further apart with every push.

"OK, Rob, I want you to say hello to my little friend!" Simms said with a maniacal laugh. Rob hissed as he felt something cold and metal begin to enter his asshole right beside Simms's rigid cock. "What's the barrel of my .44 feel like up there, Rob?"

"I can't take this anymore! I was done with this when I moved from Ann Arbor! I just want to have a normal straight life with Kathleen, I justÃf"" Rob said through sobs and grunts as he continued his battering ram assault. "I just want to live a straight lifestyle and leave my gay days behind!" He grunted one last time, withdrew his gun and cock from Rob's bloodied anus, and shoved Rob onto his back.

"Get ready to take my load, boy!" he yelled as he jacked his crooked cock into Rob's mouth. He kept his .44 focused on Rob's forehead as he began pouring the brown liquor into Rob's mouth. A few drops of the spirit hit Simms's dick and he lost control. His butt cheeks tightened and his hips thrust forward and backward like a piston as his scrotum tightened.

"You little fucking Linux faggot, take my load!" Simms shouted at the top of his lungs. Spurt after spurt of sickly yellow hacker semen erupted from Simms's straining purple cockhead into Rob's gullet, the JÃffger splashing Rob's face and mixing with the cum into an infernal homosexual cocktail. Rob gagged and flailed his arms.

Rob laid gasping and spitting after Simms climbed off of his spent form. Rob turned and looked at Simms as if in a trance. Blood and semen and JÃffgermeister leaked from his sullied lips and collected in his goatee. Sweat and more JÃffgermeister covered his brow. His eyes, bloodshot from the alcohol, strained to make out Simms's pudgy form shuffling in the darkness. Rob started but then cried out in pain as his ass spasmed. His hand went to his sore, puffy anus and he rolled around in his soiled sheets. His eyes were glazed over, almost catatonically. He began crying again, his whole body wracked in weeping.

Simms pulled up a website with a few 3D models on it and asked, "what does 100,000 polygons mean? Hey, could we just have the program write whatever text we wanted over these signs so we could sell ads in-game?"

Malda felt at a disadvantage since he hadn't done any 3D programming since toying around with POV-Ray work a decade ago. He struggled through an explanation about how models are essentially a web of triangles with a flat texture projected onto them, and that in-game ads should not, in fact, be difficult.

"Really? Golly." Simms said. "Okay, they tell me we can finish this in six months if we work part-time, so we can probably finish it in three if we work full-time."

He had been describing a game as complex as Spore.

"I'm outsourcing most of the work to the Philippines. They're willing to work on a royalty basis. You can transmit the technical requirements to them, change my words into code they can understand."

"Change... your words... into code... they'll understand..." Malda gibbered.

"Really, you can do that?" Michael Simms peered through his glasses.

At that point, Malda had given up all hope that a decent game could be made. But he still wanted to know how much money he could get out of this guy...this queer chicken-hawk. "So... how much would I be getting for this?"

"$75,000 per month," Michael Simms said, with no hesitation.

Malda blinked. "That's, um, after the game's done, right?"

Michael Simms pulled up a spreadsheet. "A popular game gets about 250,000 players. At $15 a month, that means they pull in... $3,750,000. They tell me to pay about 10% of that to the developers. I'd give you 2%. That's... $75,000." He smiled at the screen.

"But, ah, nothing until we're pulling in that kind of money?"

"We'll offer advertising in the game," he said. "For gay sex. Don't you think companies like Google would like to get in on this, advertise in our game?"

He blinked again. "I'm not sure Google really needs that kind of exposure." Deciding to go on the offensive, Malda said "Okay, a friend of mine, Calvin, worked for five years on his game, Venture the Void. Go ahead and pull it up at venturethevoid.com."

He started typing in the address bar: "venture of the void". Malda corrected him and soon colorful planets and spaceships swirled on the monitor. It was a gay site to behold.

"Okay, see he's generating all these planets automatically. No two are the same, they've got times of day, automatically generated weather, plants... You see that spaceship? No two of them in the game are identical, even over multiple plays. All that and guess how many paying players he got?" Malda paused. "Twenty-five."

"Oh," Michael Simms said, "but did he advertise on this site?" He navigated to the third or fourth hit on Google for "MMO". It was some portal for MMO games with reviews, news, and all sorts of things.

"I'm not sure," Malda hesitated, "Calvin submitted it lots of places."

He just shook his head. "All that work and he didn't even advertise in the right places. If he just would have advertised here, he could have been rolling in the money."

It was pretty clear that Malda wasn't going to get any money out of this engagement, so he decided to cut his losses and make the long journey back to his own apartment. As he stood up to end the interview, Michael Simms casually blurted out "I never leave the apartment."

Malda raised an eyebrow.

"I've got an idea every day," he said. "I'll just be doing something then, POW! An idea! That's why you need me. Now, look at this."

Michael Simms walked over to his closet and took out one of those massive wargames from the 70's. He told him about a "compare and contrast" essay he had in college, "comparing tic-tac-toe to checkers to chess to games like this with thousands of pieces." Ten years ago, he presented investors the idea of developing a series of games like this on the computer. "ÃfIt's just like printing money!' they told me."

Not one game chit had been popped from its original cardboard. Malda couldn't help but wonder if any investors had sprung for this free money.

"Have you ever played the computer game Civilization?" Michael Simms asked. Before Malda could even nod affirmatively, he continued "One time I was playing and a chariot parked in the mountains defeated a howitzer! That's just never going to happen. One time I just sat down and started writing down things that were wrong with the game. POW! I had a list of ninety things, just like that."

It was time for him to go. Malda wished Michael Simms luck, but told him frankly what he thought of his enterprise...that it was shit. After his two-hour ride home, the first thing he did when was email his friend Calvin the link to the magical money-making MMO forum, asking for only 2% of his proceeds. He expects to be rolling in money any time now.

Google Main Page Says To Use Chrome Only In IE (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27623299)

When I go to the main google page in IE 8, it has this huge icon telling me to use Chrome in the top right corner. When I go there in FF, its not there. Is google singling out IE users?

Re:Google Main Page Says To Use Chrome Only In IE (5, Insightful)

Tacvek (948259) | about 5 years ago | (#27623367)

Perhaps. My guess is they have logic like the following:

If you use Firefox, you probably already have heard about Chrome, and have decided not to switch. If you use IE, you probably have no idea that other browsers even exist, but you may know and like Google, so would be willing to give this Chrome thing a try.

Re:Google Main Page Says To Use Chrome Only In IE (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27623645)

Or maybe they just wrote the page such that standards-compliant browsers won't show the advert.

Re:Google Main Page Says To Use Chrome Only In IE (1)

shentino (1139071) | about 5 years ago | (#27624311)

That would be good marketing though...

As only the people with crappy browsers like IE would have their experiences improved by switching, while those with browsers that follow the rules probably already have satisfied users who would be meh about leaping from one cloud to another.

Re:Google Main Page Says To Use Chrome Only In IE (1)

dm89 (1462073) | about 5 years ago | (#27626871)

Google promoting Chrome over IE because of standards compliance makes no sense, since Google's home page [w3.org] is not standards compliant

Re:Google Main Page Says To Use Chrome Only In IE (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27628491)

Why dont you quit this dirty cloud talk, shentino.

They are not happy mickey mouse clouds, they are shit clouds, shit clouds coming together before a shit blizzard.

You know what a shit blizzard is, dont you?

Re:Google Main Page Says To Use Chrome Only In IE (1)

trazan (667537) | about 5 years ago | (#27625911)

Probably. And you're likely to be more open to the idea of installing a new browser if you're using IE8 (since you just did so) compared to IE6 & 7.

Re:Google Main Page Says To Use Chrome Only In IE (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27623691)

Of course they are!

Firefox has the "Tell me if the site I'm visiting is a suspected attack site" option checked by default. (Tools --> Options --> Security) This option sends every site one visits to Google for verification, so Google is already getting a complete history of each site visited for FF users. [IE sends this information to Microsoft.]

Thus, Google has more incentive to switch an IE user to Chrome than a FF user.

Re:Google Main Page Says To Use Chrome Only In IE (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27624757)

I am sorry but that's incorrect. Firefox uses a local database of suspicious URLs that is updated every 30 min. URLs are never send to Google, Google sends suspicious URLs to Firefox.

The functionality you describe was optional in older versions of Firefox (to eliminate the max 30 min. delay for ultra paranoid people) but was removed on request of Google because it caused them too much load.

Re:Google Main Page Says To Use Chrome Only In IE (1)

Cathbard (954906) | about 5 years ago | (#27624033)

Actually google did issue a press release saying that they did not want to encroach upon firefox's market and that it was IE that they had their sights set on. It WAS a press release so read into that what you will. Firefox and Google do make a lot of money for each other so it may be more of a financial thing than a "do no evil" thing. I don't want to speculate, could be a bit from column A and a bit from column B.

Re:Google Main Page Says To Use Chrome Only In IE (1)

zuperduperman (1206922) | about 5 years ago | (#27624315)

It's interesting that they are attacking IE8 and not just IE6 & 7. They had good technical arguments for attacking IE6. IE7 somewhat, but almost none for IE8. This brings them 1 step closer to getting into monopolist problems with Chrome - they can hardly go to town claiming Microsoft is pushing IE unfairly on Windows when they themselves are cross-fertilizing their own browser from their search business.

Re:Google Main Page Says To Use Chrome Only In IE (1, Interesting)

Bert64 (520050) | about 5 years ago | (#27625075)

IE8 may be a significant improvement from 7, but it is still massively behind other browsers... It has no SVG support, it's javascript engine is still massively behind the other browsers (javascript is very important for google) and it's css support while a big improvement is still behind other browsers...
Also, doesn't IE8 require you to insert a non standard tag into your site in order to make it attempt to follow standards?

Re:Google Main Page Says To Use Chrome Only In IE (1)

Bert64 (520050) | about 5 years ago | (#27625051)

IE is a browser controlled by a company that competes with google's profitable business areas, and is used by that competitor to drive traffic to it's services which compete with google...
Firefox is not a competitor, google make no money from chrome, they just want users to be running a browser that defaults to google, which firefox also does. I imagine they also want users to be running standards compliant browsers, as it makes life much easier for them to write apps for them.

Re:Google Main Page Says To Use Chrome Only In IE (1)

Dan541 (1032000) | about 5 years ago | (#27625059)

It's because IE users don't know any better. Firefox users are not going to switch to something else, at least not easily.

Re:Google Main Page Says To Use Chrome Only In IE (1)

gollito (980620) | about 5 years ago | (#27627727)

Not true. I did. Firefox has gotten bloated and takes forever to even startup (I only have 1-2 plugins installed). Chrome is wicked fast.

Not so good. Time to make gooder. (3, Insightful)

JavaManJim (946878) | about 5 years ago | (#27623807)

I like Chrome's Home Page web thumbprints.

I dislike that I cannot control these. For example right now, I have two timesonline.uk up. Permanently it seems. The "tool" icon does not allow Home Page editing. It should.

So,
A. If anyone out there can enlighten me on how to adjust Home Page icons. Go ahead.
B. If not Chrome developers, are you listening? Add web page adjustments to the Home Page. Pretty please?

Thanks

Re:Not so good. Time to make gooder. (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27623901)

The current dev branch of chrome just added support for adjusting thumbnails of new pages.

Re:Not so good. Time to make gooder. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27624535)

The home page simply shows your 9 most visited URLs. Stop visiting those pages, and visit others instead, and soon enough they will be replaced. If you deliberately visit one page a bunch of times in a row, it will eventually show up on the home page.

Re:Not so good. Time to make gooder. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27626013)

I like Chrome's Home Page web thumbprints.

I dislike that I cannot control these. For example right now, I have two timesonline.uk up. Permanently it seems. The "tool" icon does not allow Home Page editing. It should.

So,
A. If anyone out there can enlighten me on how to adjust Home Page icons. Go ahead.
B. If not Chrome developers, are you listening? Add web page adjustments to the Home Page. Pretty please?

Thanks

The newest release on the dev thread currently supports this.

I use winxp on my eeepc for chrome (1)

parann0yed (878137) | about 5 years ago | (#27624169)

I've found that firefox just doesn't live up to what chrome gives me. It's a simpler interface, doesn't crash (very often) and is fast. I also love the most visited pages feature ready for you when a new tab is opened. I'm a heavy duty linux user but I won't switch to linux on my little laptop until there is a stable chrome implementation for it. And generally, I hate windows.

Re:I use winxp on my eeepc for chrome (1)

A12m0v (1315511) | about 5 years ago | (#27624241)

Hopefully this Summer we'll see a stable release of Google Chrome for Mac OS X and GNU/Linux

Re:I use winxp on my eeepc for chrome (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27625807)

If you're going to use closed source just for a browser feature, you might as well use Opera on Linux since it's the lesser of two evils.

Sandboxing lie... (1)

Computershack (1143409) | about 5 years ago | (#27625053)

Sandboxing is NOT unique to Chrome. IE7 has been sandboxed in Vista since launch.

Re:Sandboxing lie... (2, Informative)

downix (84795) | about 5 years ago | (#27625475)

Have you read the article, where he discusses IE7, IE8, Firefox and Safari's own sandboxing techniques for comparison to Chromes?

So they are trying to use their search monopoly .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27625441)

... to enter the browser market?
I'd like to call some of those EU guys...

portable chrome (1)

viralMeme (1461143) | about 5 years ago | (#27625785)

Is this version of portable chrome [portableapps.com] legimite. I do know it tries to go online and write to my system, strange for a portable app ...

Re:portable chrome (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#27625931)

What's strange about a web browser trying to go online?

Re:portable chrome (1)

viralMeme (1461143) | about 5 years ago | (#27626461)

"What's strange about a web browser trying to go online?"

At the install stages it tries to go online and install 'stuff', which is strange for a portable app ..

Re:portable chrome (1)

gollito (980620) | about 5 years ago | (#27627701)

3. Run "IronPortable.exe". It will download the latest version of Iron from SRWare and install Flash from your computer!

Ummm.... pretty sure it's just updating itself.

Is Google Chrome really good? (1)

Paulcheng (1525657) | about 5 years ago | (#27627313)

When I use Chrome, I cannot open some websites. Possibly, I should change settings, but I still think it need to improve a lot.
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