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Google Dropping Netscape Plugin API Support In Chrome/Blink

Unknown Lamer posted about a year ago | from the wither-portability dept.

Chromium 170

An anonymous reader writes "Google today announced it is dropping Netscape Plugin Application Programming Interface support in Chrome. The company will be phasing out support over the coming year, starting with blocking webpage-instantiated plugins in January 2014. Google has looked at anonymous Chrome usage data and estimates that just six NPAPI plug-ins were used by more than 5 percent of users in the last month. To 'avoid disruption' (read: attempt to minimize the confusion) for users, Google will temporarily whitelist the most popular NPAPI plugins: Silverlight, Unity, Google Earth, Google Talk, and Facebook Video." Google offers NaCl as an alternative, and "Moving forward, our goal is to evolve the standards-based web platform to cover the use cases once served by NPAPI."

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"standards-based web platform" (5, Funny)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | about a year ago | (#44929231)

Standards are wonderful, and everyone should have their very own!

Re:"standards-based web platform" (0)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about a year ago | (#44929253)

NaCl is definitely better than NPAPI. Can you spell "sandbox"?

Re:"standards-based web platform" (4, Insightful)

XanC (644172) | about a year ago | (#44929311)

That may be, but why don't we "evolve" this other thing to cover all the existing use cases BEFORE disabling NPAPI?

Re:"standards-based web platform" (1)

Bobakitoo (1814374) | about a year ago | (#44929837)

They will never update their NPAPI plugin while it is still working. Because if it work, don't fix it.

The NPAPI is only depreciate at this point; the summary state that the most common used ones are white-listed. It is therefore probably not impossible to custom white-list any if your specific need.

Re:"standards-based web platform" (3, Informative)

am 2k (217885) | about a year ago | (#44929313)

However, NaCl is definitely not a standard if it's only implemented in a single browser.

Btw, Unity3D already supports NaCl with the same license that supports the web plugin. Silverlight needs to die anyways, and two of those plugins are Google services.

Re:"standards-based web platform" (2, Insightful)

LordLimecat (1103839) | about a year ago | (#44929899)

Isnt NPAPI just another "de facto" standard anyways? Pretty sure the "N" stands for "netscape", not "W3C" or "IETF" or "RFC".

Re:"standards-based web platform" (1)

Gwala (309968) | about a year ago | (#44930777)

Unity3d may support NaCl; but it has a couple of glaring deficiencies - like a lack of network support (this is apparently a issue with the Pepper API not supporting it). The webplayer (NPAPI) version is unfortunately also a bit faster at runtime.

Re:"standards-based web platform" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929331)

I don't know what the hell NPAPI is, but I'm sure NaCl is better on french fries...

A pox on both houses. (3, Interesting)

RamiKro (3019255) | about a year ago | (#44929333)

NaCl is a good implementation of a terrible idea: i.e Running software in the browser is all kinds of wrong.

If not NaCl or JS, then what? (1, Troll)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#44929377)

NaCl is "running software in the browser". JavaScript is likewise "running software in the browser", so it appears you'd be against that too. Would you rather require every developer of an Internet-connected application to develop an app for Windows, develop an app for Windows RT, develop an app for OS X, develop an app for GNU/Linux, develop an app for iOS, develop an app for Android, develop an app for Windows Phone, develop an app for Wii U, develop an app for Nintendo 3DS, develop an app for PlayStation 3, develop an app for PlayStation Vita, and develop an app for Xbox 360?

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (2)

Mitchell314 (1576581) | about a year ago | (#44929451)

Yes. More work to do / less efficient task making = more manpower needed to get jobs done = more demand for software development labor = better job prospects for me. :)

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (4, Insightful)

RamiKro (3019255) | about a year ago | (#44929485)

Yes. I am against both. Cross platform programming as an Interpreter running in a sandbox (JavaScript) or a bytecode VM (Java, NaCl...) shouldn't be done through the browser.
The Internet should be slightly expanded HTML1 and CGI as far as I'm concerned. Maybe with an exception for audio\video if we can agree on a codec...

Keep application development and serving to the likes of Android's Play Store + Dalvik.

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (0)

aitikin (909209) | about a year ago | (#44929571)

The Internet should be slightly expanded HTML1 and CGI as far as I'm concerned.

"No one will need more than 637 kB of memory for a personal computer..."

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (2)

dreamchaser (49529) | about a year ago | (#44929781)

The Internet should be slightly expanded HTML1 and CGI as far as I'm concerned.

"No one will need more than 637 kB of memory for a personal computer..."

Apples and oranges. Having more RAM doesn't create a huge security risk like running code in a browser does.

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929951)

Apples and oranges. Having more RAM doesn't create a huge security risk like running code in a browser does.

NaCI is a sandbox, the only outside call allowed are to its API. It is entirely possible that these API can be exploited, but then it could also be exploited from JavaScript. If you are against running JS, remember that HTML and CSS are a specialized form of code that is not immune to bug and exploit either. Also UTF-8 is not immune, YOU ARE NOT EVEN SAFE FROM YOUR TELNET WEB!

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (2)

RamiKro (3019255) | about a year ago | (#44930059)

Even if the security issues could be put to rest, there's no justification for running applications in a document viewer.
If Google is so concerned with serving up cross platform applications, they can package a VM and an App Store along with their browser. They can even conceive of their own URI scheme that will pass requests to the App Store to download and initialize Apps on the VM.

Is it really too much to expect something better then serving GUIs the likes of Facebook and Gmail inside the browser?

Chrome Web Store (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#44930077)

If Google is so concerned with serving up cross platform applications, they can package a VM and an App Store along with their browser.

Chrome Web Store already exists on desktop versions of Chrome.

Re:Chrome Web Store (1)

RamiKro (3019255) | about a year ago | (#44930139)

As part of Chrome. Using the browser's own APIs.
Similarly, you can use Mozilla's Marketplace in the desktop version of Firefox... Like I said earlier, a pox on both houses.

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44930383)

Good thing no one asked you when designing the internet.

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (1)

CommanderK (1078087) | about a year ago | (#44930631)

Two words: Java applets. This is exactly how they work, and it's a mess. You have to start the JVM every time you load an applet (or load it with the browser and keep it around), and then the UI is a mess. JavaScript inside a browser (with access to the DOM) is so much cleaner and faster (relatively) than the previous mess that were applets. Also similar is Flash, but Adobe got Flash performance to a decent level. However, both Flash and Java applets are going away (for good reason), and the future is probably HTML5 + JavaScript.

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (1)

Blaskowicz (634489) | about a year ago | (#44931307)

uh?
I ran a few java applets a few years ago, mostly one yahoo game. What was striking is how smooth the game's little 2D effects were, and it did not use a shit ton of CPU like flash and javascript do. Java is more akin to using a native app, UI can be anything non standard just like flash or elaborate websites. Starting the JVM was slow in 1997, but that long ago, plus we had mode PIO 16 hard drives and 120MHz CPUs.

A shame that Java was plagued with updating/installation and security issues.

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (1)

dark_glaive (2889319) | about a year ago | (#44930879)

Web browsers may have one been document browsers but that isn't true anymore. Welcome to life. Stuff changes constantly.

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (3, Insightful)

khellendros1984 (792761) | about a year ago | (#44931467)

there's no justification for running applications in a document viewer.

Except that most of the world finds it pretty convenient, and anything we've called a web browser in the last 15 years or so has been much more than a document viewer.

If Google is so concerned with serving up cross platform applications, they can package a VM and an App Store along with their browser.

They do. The V8 Javascript Engine is implemented as a VM. They include the Chrome Web Store in the desktop version of their browser as well. That doesn't mean that it's not beneficial to run apps delivered over the web in the browser, the way that every other vendor does.

Is it really too much to expect something better then serving GUIs the likes of Facebook and Gmail inside the browser?

And what's wrong with it? A sandboxed plugin API and Javascript VM makes more sense to me than downloading a native app to handle the same thing, and I down see a benefit to having a some kind of Net-VM app, separate from the browser, to run web apps in. Either way, you're still talking about running someone else's code. From that perspective, keeping the browser integrated with a sandboxed scripting and plugin environment makes more sense than any alternatives I've heard anyone propose.

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (3, Insightful)

hairyfeet (841228) | about a year ago | (#44930337)

Exactly and for an example of what can happen look at the "Yahoo Porn Bug" in my journal, I had customers spamming the living hell out of everyone in their address books and all that took was a little code, a hidden iFrame, and a browser that runs the same permission level as the user, in that case Firefox.

Frankly the whole current system is just fucked up, you can have code from as many as a dozen different servers, splattered all over the planet, all just to load a single page. And as more and more websites go "Web 3.0 apps apps apps...did we mention we have apps?" the ability to block all that crap from God knows where diminishes. I think the problem is that JavaScript was just never built with security in mind, it was back in the day when organized cybercrime and the like was the realm of sci/fi and instead of starting over when the thing started getting unsafe we just put bandaids on the bullet wounds.

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (1)

RamiKro (3019255) | about a year ago | (#44930639)

JavaScript was executed* over the course of two weekends so it was never built with much of anything in mind let alone security...

To be fair, the person in charge has repeatedly apologized and EcmaScript board members has explained both in public and in private that they all in agreement that JavaScript should be phased out and replaced completely.

Sadly, narrow business interests and squabbling amongst Microsoft, Mozilla and Google have been preventing any progress in the matter. Microsoft is pushing TypeScript, Google is pushing Dart, Mozilla is sticking to a EcmaScript for now... Mind you this is nothing new. Adobe's ActionScript is a JavaScript derivative born under similar conditions.

*designed would be a stretch...

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44931483)

JavaScript was executed* over the course of two weekends so it was never built with much of anything in mind let alone security...

To be fair, the person in charge has repeatedly apologized and EcmaScript board members has explained both in public and in private that they all in agreement that JavaScript should be phased out and replaced completely.

Sadly, narrow business interests and squabbling amongst Microsoft, Mozilla and Google have been preventing any progress in the matter. Microsoft is pushing TypeScript, Google is pushing Dart, Mozilla is sticking to a EcmaScript for now... Mind you this is nothing new. Adobe's ActionScript is a JavaScript derivative born under similar conditions.

*designed would be a stretch...

If "the person involved" was really sorry, he wouldn't have driven the recent FF change to make disabling the language harder.

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44931469)

637k was never an option. It went by increments of 16k up to 64k, then in increments of 32k from there to 640k.

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929659)

and don't even get me started on the horseless carriages...

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929867)

The Internet should be slightly expanded HTML1 and CGI as far as I'm concerned.

And by 'Internet' you mean the web?

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (4, Insightful)

LordLimecat (1103839) | about a year ago | (#44929907)

Nothing stops you from only writing a webpage thats HTML1 with no JS; just dont be surprised when noone wants to visit it.

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (2, Informative)

_merlin (160982) | about a year ago | (#44930719)

Actually, the fact that HTML1 doesn't exist stops you. HTML2 was an attempt to document what browsers of the time rendered (i.e. it was descriptive, as opposed to the prescriptive HTML3 and later), but there was no HTML1.

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (2)

RamiKro (3019255) | about a year ago | (#44930827)

Why should I care about visits? I don't live off advertisements and page hits.
I'm interested in delivering information. A company's portfolio... A product's specifications... A personal contact page... A data sheet... Wikipedia with NoScript is done right as far as I'm concerned.

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (2)

sharklasers (3047537) | about a year ago | (#44930887)

Presentation is highly important in this business. Like it or not, an attractive web site does wonders for the opinion of those who might stumble upon it. It does not have to be laden with graphics and other whiz-bang features that slow down the browser, but a boring page suggests a lack of bother and care by the company, which might translate into related opinions from those who browse the page.

Geeks continually misunderstand and downplay the significance of image. Humans are visual creatures - ignore this facet at your peril.

A round-trip and full reload for each click (2)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#44930097)

The Internet should be slightly expanded HTML1 and CGI as far as I'm concerned.

Usability would be horrible. For example, web-based paint programs [wikipedia.org] can currently use HTML5 Canvas, SWF, or Java. But without any sort of client-side scripting, they would have to use a server-side image map and make a round-trip for each click on the image. And imagine how much longer Slashdot comment pages would take to update if every time you expanded or collapsed a comment, the server had to resend the full text of all other comments.

Re:A round-trip and full reload for each click (1)

RamiKro (3019255) | about a year ago | (#44930239)

I'll ignore the web-based X programs issue since I've already mentioned I'm against serving application inside the browser.

As for the Slashdot comments, Slashdot should be an App. In fact, Slashdot is a prototype for apps like feedly.
Though the comments could still be served as read only on the html side... Somewhat like email lists archives.

Re:A round-trip and full reload for each click (2)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#44930341)

As for the Slashdot comments, Slashdot should be an App.

There already was an app: the NNTP news reader. But no ISPs provide NNTP service anymore. So for which platforms would the Slashdot app be made available?

Re:A round-trip and full reload for each click (1)

RamiKro (3019255) | about a year ago | (#44930545)

What's wrong with using a simple, RESTful, HTTP API? You can even support a JavaScript client using the same client.

Re:A round-trip and full reload for each click (1)

RamiKro (3019255) | about a year ago | (#44930549)

same client's API...

Re:A round-trip and full reload for each click (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44931281)

Independent ISPs (not the big ones owned by media companies) often *do* provide NNTP service, actually -- but they don't usually make a big deal out of it, and potential users have to either use the physical phone book's whitepages, BroadbandReports, or web searching to discover they exist. Sonic.net (California) and DSL Extreme (national wide-metropolitan) both do, just to name a couple offhand.

(Posting anon due to the stupid "you can post and moderate in the same discussion, but only if you hide who you are" rule.)

Re:A round-trip and full reload for each click (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44931143)

Yes. The point is those applications would simply not exist! They're useless, this shouldn't be what the web is for

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (3, Insightful)

washort (6555) | about a year ago | (#44931221)

So you think the platform for useful apps should be owned by Google instead of being open to everyone?

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929583)

LOL... You were going along fine until you said "develop an app for GNU/Linux". Yeah, right - like any web developer is going to create an app specially for that 1.3% market...

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (2)

swillden (191260) | about a year ago | (#44930009)

LOL... You were going along fine until you said "develop an app for GNU/Linux". Yeah, right - like any web developer is going to create an app specially for that 1.3% market...

Unlike the blockbuster that is Windows RT.

Re:If not NaCl or JS, then what? (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#44930119)

Yeah, right - like any web developer is going to create an app specially for that 1.3% market...

Some web browsers Launchpad.net (the Ubuntu bug tracker) is made for a fraction of that 1.3% market. Besides, for which free (as in at least beer) operating system should developers of client-server applications create the client side of said applications? Or why is it desirable that purchasing a copy of a Microsoft brand operating system or an Apple brand computer be a prerequisite to participation in the public sphere?

Re: If not NaCl or JS, then what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44931039)

LOL that is because any dumb motherfucker who styles themselves a "web developer" shouldn't be allowed to write code.

Re:A pox on both houses. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44930993)

Damn straight. Never run software in the browser!

Rendering HTML? That's running software in the browser. Get rid of it - it doesn't belong in the browser!

Re:A pox on both houses. (1)

Blaskowicz (634489) | about a year ago | (#44931325)

Great idea, let's serve a html renderer in javascript to render a website in the browser in a consistent way and without extraneous features.

Re:A pox on both houses. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44931337)

Wrong. The web browser was the application, and its sole job was to display (it wasn't "rendered" at the time) very simple static documents -- bold/italic/plain text, pics & links -- for viewing was its job, just as Microsoft Word does with .doc files. No inner application was needed, and I'm not sure where you got the idea that there was.

Re:"standards-based web platform" (1)

KiloByte (825081) | about a year ago | (#44929357)

NaCl supports only a tiny subset of NPAPI functionality, it's also not portable beyond i386 and armel.

NPAPI is just as secure (or more often, insecure) as the browser itself. Some sandboxing is in theory good, but NaCl hardly brings anything you can't already do, at a speed and sanity penalty, in javascript.

At the moment I have only two plugins installed: Flash and DNSSEC Validator. Tell me how would you implement the latter without either arbitrary network access or calling out to the OS.

Re:"standards-based web platform" (1, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#44929391)

NaCl supports only a tiny subset of NPAPI functionality, it's also not portable beyond i386 and armel.

To which still-manufacturer-supported platforms is NPAPI portable?

Re:"standards-based web platform" (1)

Blaskowicz (634489) | about a year ago | (#44931365)

Manufacturer of what?
There's flash plugin for sparc, but they stopped at version 11.2.202.223 while the current one on linux is 11.2.202.310
But surely there are other NPAPI plugins than Adobe ones, like the totem or mplayer plugins.

For a web browser, let's see iceweasel 17.0.9 [debian.org] :
amd64 armel armhf i386 ia64 kfreebsd-amd64 kfreebsd-i386 mips mipsel powerpc s390 s390x sparc

Re:"standards-based web platform" (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929411)

Our company uses a NPAPI (and activex on IE) plugin to bridge between our website and users' TWAIN scanners/cameras.

It's a fucking shame that after all the *chans and flickrs and reddit over the last decade that none of the browsers (even on the pads) have an "acquire" button to go with their "browse" button on the file upload box.

Oh wait, there's now a javascript API that will work on about three phones to get video. Whoop de fuck you I'm out.

Re:"standards-based web platform" (1)

oPless (63249) | about a year ago | (#44929539)

Last I looked, NaCl is moving to llvm bytecode, allowing on the fly JITting to x86, Arm, etc.

The only thing that'll be really annoying is there will be no way to access hardware directly. I wrote a PC/SC plugin ages ago to do just this.

I guess the only way there now would be writing a signed Java applet...

But wait ... I can't do that on OSX, because ... Chrome is a 32bit app!

Re: "standards-based web platform" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44930691)

So is it being renamed JITCl, as it won't be native anymore?

Re:"standards-based web platform" (1)

manu0601 (2221348) | about a year ago | (#44930159)

Tell me how would you implement [DNSSEC Validator] without either arbitrary network access or calling out to the OS

It could be done at the level of the OS' DNS resolver, for the good of all applications, including browsers.

Re:"standards-based web platform" (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#44929371)

can you sell properiaty.. because I sure can't!

why not sandbox npapi?(yeah yeah, full of problems to do that. but not that much more than nacl).

also where does this leave say, unity web player? is nacl available as feasible route for other browsers? is nacl even ready?

Re:"standards-based web platform" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929441)

Ordinarily I'd be critical of Google along these lines; but this time it's justified. The N stands for Netscape! This was cool technology when AOL and dial-up were a big deal. I even wrote some plug-ins myself. It was fun; but it's ancient. AFAIK, It was always a company protocol that just happened to get picked up by others. Did it ever go through a formal standardization process? I doubt it. IE apparently dropped it a long time ago, and Mozilla is dropping it.

Re:"standards-based web platform" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929507)

IE apparently dropped it a long time ago, and Mozilla is dropping it.

Someone should tell Mozilla [mozilla.org] that.

Re:"standards-based web platform" (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929513)

The N stands for Netscape!

The same company that invented SSL and JavaScript? Yeah, no-one uses any of their stuff anymore, that's a perfectly good reason to get rid of it all by itself.

Re:"standards-based web platform" (1)

binarylarry (1338699) | about a year ago | (#44929521)

I think you mean "Standard-esque"

Re:"standards-based web platform" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44930865)

Include -> Embrace -> Extend -> Extinguish. The internationally valid professional conduct for destructive business practices.

No More Amazon music :-( (3, Insightful)

greggman (102198) | about a year ago | (#44929329)

I use the AmazonMP3Downloader plugin so when I purchase music from Amazon it gets added to my music library immediately.

AFAIK PPAPI (and NaCl) can't implement that because they need to save the music to places outside the sandbox.

Maybe Google can help define a "download to music library" HTML5 API?

Chrome native messaging (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#44929421)

I use the AmazonMP3Downloader plugin so when I purchase music from Amazon it gets added to my music library immediately.

AFAIK PPAPI (and NaCl) can't implement that because they need to save the music to places outside the sandbox.

AmazonMP3Downloader could be split into a part that runs inside Chrome and a separate process that downloads the file, and the two parts would communicate with Chrome native messaging [chrome.com] . It's like when Windows Vista came out: applications that needed to run in the background with administrative privileges needed to be split into an elevated service and a not-elevated GUI.

Re:Chrome native messaging (1)

greggman (102198) | about a year ago | (#44930523)

Yea, that would work. So would a little local server (scary).

I still think I'd prefer an HTML5 Media Library API. Every piece of native code you ask users to install is yet another vector for trojans and viruses. If Amazon has to write one so will Barnes and Noble, Beatport and any other site that wants to let you download music, videos, books, etc directly into your OS's folders for those things.

Re:No More Amazon music :-( (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44930625)

Huh? Can't they just let you download the mp3 file, save it to your music library?

Re:No More Amazon music :-( (1)

GigaplexNZ (1233886) | about a year ago | (#44930809)

No. The music library is outside the sandbox.

Re:No More Amazon music :-( (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44931125)

The old fashioned way was that you'd just download + open a .amz file, and the mime handler for .amz would start the download. Not the most intuitive or streamlnied method from a novice user perspective, but it works.

"anonymous Chrome usage data" (1)

oldhack (1037484) | about a year ago | (#44929397)

That's why I don't use chrome. But firefox probably does the same.

Re:"anonymous Chrome usage data" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929729)

Tools -> Options -> Advanced -> Data Choices

That gives you decent control over the information sent to Mozilla. The "usage data" that you refer to (I believe this falls under "telemetry") is disabled by default on release builds on Firefox (enabled for in-development versions).

If Google can offer NaCl, they... (1)

EzInKy (115248) | about a year ago | (#44929399)

...can also offer pepper. Seriously, this is crazy. Everyone knows Google won't do no evil.

Re:If Google can offer NaCl, they... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929741)

Nowhere in the article does it say that pepper (ie. PPAPI) is going anywhere. You'll note that the built in flash and PDF viewer don't use NPAPI

Re:If Google can offer NaCl, they... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929807)

Oh, another thing. NaCl is actually based on NPAPI, probably wouldn't run quite so well without it.

Re:If Google can offer NaCl, they... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44931445)

Nowhere in the article does it say that pepper (ie. PPAPI) is going anywhere. You'll note that the built in flash and PDF viewer don't use NPAPI

PPAPI needs to die in a fire, or at least stop being 1/3 slower than NPAPI. It is a serious performance hit to Flash games. I end up disabling it every time they re-enable it.

Embrace, Extend, Extinguish? (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929445)

Mark my words: Chrome is going to end up being a second IE 6-like millstone around the IT industrys neck. We are already seeing web sites that only work in Chrome (and Safari, if you're lucky). Firefox, IE (!), and whichever intrepid fourth party browser engines still exist on the periphery, will be reduced to second-class citizens..

Re:Embrace, Extend, Extinguish? (1)

LordLimecat (1103839) | about a year ago | (#44929939)

Chrome renders with Webkit, which is used by multiple browsers. Its also one of the most standards-compliant engines out there; if Firefox / IE arent rendering a page and Chrome (webkit) is, thats probably a deficiency in those browsers' engines' standards support.

Re:Embrace, Extend, Extinguish? (0)

Rockoon (1252108) | about a year ago | (#44930031)

IE used to be the most standards compliant browser out there too...

..then Netscape usage share dropped to single-digit percentages

..then IE stagnated

Re:Embrace, Extend, Extinguish? (1)

mrbester (200927) | about a year ago | (#44930141)

Chrome uses Blink nowadays, unless you're on iOS

Re:Embrace, Extend, Extinguish? (2)

BZ (40346) | about a year ago | (#44930235)

Actually, WebKit cuts corners on standards a lot more than Firefox and IE do. For example, the official CSS 2.1 test suite from when the standard was finalized two years ago shows WebKit passing about 89% of the tests (for comparison, Firefox passed about 97%).

If Firefox/IE aren't rendering a page and WebKit is, it's almost always because the page author has written WebKit-specific code (e.g. used -webkit CSS prefixes on properties that are supported without a prefix in other browsers).

What WebKit and especially Chrome _does_ have is much better marketing. Not least because they have a much larger marketing budget than, say, Mozilla. Sadly, their marketing is working well on you.

Re:Embrace, Extend, Extinguish? (1)

Lehk228 (705449) | about a year ago | (#44930731)

I have not seen a page that firefox doesn't render correctly since it was called firebird.

my fiance insists on using chrome despite constantly having weird issues with it.

Google is best avoided, period. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929453)

Google is actually a sanitized spinoff of a "no such agency" project.
Come on, you didn't REALLY believe that Brin and Page were two
clever boys who came up with this stuff on their own, did you ?
Anyone with a brain knows this is improbable in reality.

Every time you use Google for any reason or any purpose, you
are tracked and the data can be used for reasons you may not
even be able to imagine until it is too late. Sure, you think you
don't break any laws, and you may also believe that your life is
boring and as non-controversial as it gets. But when someone
who has the power to access the data decides you need to go down,
the data can be used to paint all sorts of pictures, such that when the
black Suburban comes to take you away, even your closest friends
and neighbors will be persuaded that they "never really knew you" and
that "it's a good thing you were caught before you did anything worse than
you had already done".

You can all laugh now. But rather than laugh, I suggest you watch the movie "Das Leben
des Anderen" ( "The Lives of Others" ). That movie will give you a good idea of what the
masses in the US have to look forward to as the US government takes action to make sure
that no one will resist its ever more insane foreign and domestic policies.

The new IE is here (4, Interesting)

Billly Gates (198444) | about a year ago | (#44929459)

More and more Chrome is reminding me of IE from the humble IE 4 which was the best browser to the jaguarnut of IE 6 which still has not completely died off yet in China and some corporate portals.

Chrome rushes to throw HTML 5 and CSS 3 features not standardized on W3C so they can pass HTML5test and calls them HTML 5 and CSS 3 but really are made just like box model and CSS were invented by IE. The W3C in the end decided to make it a little different which is why when Firefox went one way the corps hung onto IE 6 instead.

This NACL and plugins is all 21st activeX to me. If MS did this for IE 11 everyone would be screaming bloody murder.

Re:The new IE is here (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929675)

I see we are not letting a mere lack of knowledge be any impediment to voicing opinions tonight.

Re:The new IE is here (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about a year ago | (#44931347)

More and more Chrome is reminding me of IE from the humble IE 4 which was the best browser to the jaguarnut of IE 6 which still has not completely died off yet

I see we are not letting a mere lack of knowledge be any impediment to voicing opinions tonight.

Well, I've been developing "web services" since before the web existed (BBS networks), all the way up to HTML5 and beyond, with bleeding edge browser features pre-standardization, so let me weigh in on the issue:
/me shudders.

Re:The new IE is here (1)

gQuigs (913879) | about a year ago | (#44929963)

Are you sure that's your sig (Save IE6), or was that the end of your argument :)

Hindsight is 40/40 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929553)

Gee, thanks Google. You get a bunch of people addicted to your tech with promises of openness, standards, and "not being evil" and then you use it to foist your own unpopular tech on everyone. For what it's worth, I hope your hubris comes back to bite you in the ass, as it should with all of the "open standards" you're trying to spring on everyone as quickly and rudely as possible. I guess they feel as invincible as Microsoft did in the 90s with Explorer.

Re:Hindsight is 40/40 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929647)

Gee, thanks Google. You get a bunch of people addicted to your tech with promises of openness, standards, and "not being evil" and then you use it to foist your own unpopular tech on everyone.

What you are ( quite rightly ) complaining about is a tech industry version of imperialism.

If you want to feel better, take a look at the history of pretty much any empire. They all
overreach, and this inevitably leads to their downfall. It is the cycle of life of
entities who allow emotions rather than intellect to rule their political and / or
business decisions.

                                                                                                                                        - Z

( captcha = inbreed
Can that really be an accident ? I think not. )

Does this mean I will lose LASTPASS? (1)

mlawrence (1094477) | about a year ago | (#44929597)

I simply cannot function without that browser add-on. Why is Google doing this? I will be forced to switch browsers. :(

Re:Does this mean I will lose LASTPASS? (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#44929661)

dunno why lastpass would need npapi. I don't use it, but I would guess lastpass acts more as a browser plugin, in the sense that it is a plugin for the browser and not a plugin for handling elements on the page that the page creator declared that plugin would handle(like a box on the page that's supposed to show a flash animation).

Re:Does this mean I will lose LASTPASS? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929803)

lastpass uses chrome's own internal browser extension api

Re:Does this mean I will lose LASTPASS? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929809)

No, it doesn't. LastPass does not use NPAPI.

Re:Does this mean I will lose LASTPASS? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929855)

They're phasing NPAPI out starting next year. So either LastPass will need to make a NaCl plugin or Google should add LastPass to their whitelist to avoid a backlash.

Re:Does this mean I will lose LASTPASS? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44929971)

So either LastPass will need to make a NaCl plugin or Google should add LastPass to their whitelist to avoid a backlash.

Or do nothing, since, you know, they don't use NPAPI.

I find it telling (1)

msobkow (48369) | about a year ago | (#44929945)

I find it telling that even Google Earth doesn't use NaCl yet.

Quake Live (1)

DudemanX (44606) | about a year ago | (#44930109)

Quake Live runs their engine through a NPAPI plugin. They're supposed to port that to NaCl just for Chrome users? More likely they'll just not support it and ask people to switch to Firefox.

Re:Quake Live (1)

msobkow (48369) | about a year ago | (#44930225)

You still play Quake?

How... quaint.

Torture.... (5, Funny)

wbr1 (2538558) | about a year ago | (#44930251)

Google once again shuts down a service/feature, but this time they have the audacity to rub NaCl in the wound. That burns, it really does.

Re:Torture.... (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a year ago | (#44930433)

What's wrong with NaCl? Serious question.

Re:Torture.... (1)

wbr1 (2538558) | about a year ago | (#44930519)

Um.. NaCl == Table Salt. Salt in a wound?

5% is irrelevant number. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44930783)

It is odd that google quotes those stats from the article.
The stat that actually matters in a decision like this, is the percent of users who rely on a plugin. 1000 plugins used by .5% of the user base a piece can be significant.

It is strange that a data driven company would quote data that is irrelevant to the matter.

Enterprise apps (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44931459)

What about all the enterprise apps built in Java? This means we wont be able to use Chrome. Google loses by this move.

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