I will have to admit that when Google Chrome came out, I was really impressed by its features and looks. It was a refreshing respite from both Firefox and IE7 that I was both using then. I was enjoyed using Google Chrome at first but noticed after awhile that it starting to run slow. Even when Google put it out of beta, Chrome’s speed was not commendable. But finally, Google probably heard users’ complaints and so they decided to release a new Google Chrome and put the browser back to beta mode. [Read more…] about Google Releases a Faster Chrome in Beta
The browser wars is starting to heat up again due to some exciting developments in the industry. Last year, Google joined the browser wars with its Google Chrome. Firefox continues to grow and improve. And lately, Apple’s Safari browser for the Mac just released a new version. But wait, these are not just the web browsers available for us to use. There are tons of web browsers actually, each with their own set of features. Here are ten of these other browsers which you may have not heard of before.
Avant Browser – A free web browser with user-friendly interface and multi-tab browsing. Among its key features are online profile storage, autofills, flash animation filters, built-in ad/Pop-up blocker, multi-window browsing, real full-screen mode, built-in search engine, full IE compatibility, and more.
iRider – An elegant multi-page web browser that allows you to browse the web faster with multi-page browsing capability. Specifically iRider lets you fly around a visual map of all the pages and site you’re working with, surf ahead while pages are downloading, select multiple links or favorites and click only once to open all of them, and other useful functionality.
Maxthon – a powerful tabbed browser with rich set of features that provides improved web surfing experience. This web browser’s key features include tabbed browsing, mouse gestures, smart browsing acceleration, magic fill, URL aliasing, anti-freeze, super drag&drop, and more.
Flock – A web browser built from Mozilla Firefox. Having most of Firefox’s useful features, Flock decide to specialize on the social aspect of web browsing. Hence, it’s the most appropriate web browser for bloggers and social networking addicts.
Lunascape – The world’s first triple engine browser that supports IE for the Trident Platform, Firefox for Gecko and Chrome for WebKit. Among its key features include crash protection functionality, mouse gestures, tab browsing, RSS News and blog info, full customization with skins and more.
Runecats Explorer Zeox – A tabbed web browser with the following features; text size changer, mini-web, search drawer and more.
NeoPlanet – A lightweight web browser that lets you control your Internet experience by customizing content channels, select your interests through the Preference Center, powerful e-mail, download manager and quick search features. NeoPlanet is also highly customizable with skins.
Ultrabrowser – Offers a fully customized web browsing solution. It boasts of dual toolbar settings, multiple themes-skin support, integrated pop-up blocker, built-in Google search, multi-search functionality, password-protected web-based bookmark manager, and more.
Shiira – An alternative web browser for Mac users. Based on a Japanese browser, Shiira’s main features include private browsing, built-in search engine, tabbed browsing, customizable drawer that contains bookmarks, RSS reader, and supports PDF viewing.
There is an article over at TechCult titled 10 Weird Browser Extensions. The list does include some really odd extensions, like one to block YouTube comments with ALL CAPS or excessive punctuation!!!
There are some useful ones in the middle of the pack though. Like the FireNES one:
You don’t need extreme hackery to protect yourself from the rest of humanity – just find something better to do and you’ll never need to deal with those annoying fleshbags again, and it doesn’t come much better than FireNES. Two thousand ROMS all ready to go in a browser toolbar. Claim that isn’t better than constantly refreshing an e-mail window and you’re a filthy liar.
The Java application doesn’t deliver the smooth emulation of Nestopia, but for somebody stuck in some kind of work-like environment where they can’t install software, it’s perfect. Not that we encourage reliving the joys of your childhood rather than doing those really interesting spreadsheets, of course.
Check out the full article to see all the other extensions that were included in the list.
Mozilla labs is all set to include a new project called Geode that will make use of geographical information while browsing and make better use of geotagged information on the web. Geotagging is the process of adding geographic information to media ( such as longitude, latitude and altitude information to photos and videos ). This information could be utilized by services to fetch content specific to certain places.
The project would be useful for accessing location specific information on mobile devices – directions, places, street addresses. Though Mozilla does not have a big presence in the mobile browsing space. Various projects at mozilla labs have been developed to make the browsing experience much smoother and efficient. Perhaps when these set of projects mature Mozilla would be considering a major thrust in the mobile browsing space as well.
Details on the Geode project will be updated here soon.
Virtual browsers are one of the two technological twists that have come to the browsing world. The other being 3D Browsing. With increased focus on security over internet activities, the concept of virtual browser makes for a secure browsing environment that would ideally not take down your system due to some malicious activity with or without your knowledge. I use the word ideally here because virtual browsers are not exactly proofed from all known and unknown exploits.
Virtual browsers provide for more secure browsing by a process called Sandboxing. Sand-boxing is the creation of a safe execution environment on a host machine so that changes made from one process do not affect the functioning of the system. The processes running inside a sandbox have limited access to the system resources and importantly to the critical resources. Thus the host as such is as secure as the absence of flaws in the sand-boxing program itself.
Coming back to browsers, the main criteria to consider when choosing among various sand-boxed environments is the option of how much fine grained control you have on the data that is stored in the sandbox session and movable to the host machine. Recently, HP in association with Mozilla announced its virtual browser. Google Chrome also features a sand-boxed approach to its browser tabs – which means that each tab runs as a separate process and does not crash all other tabs in event of any failure. This technology has been a reason why Google acquired Greenborder, a maker of secure software.
Virtual browsers are a good choice to make your web browsing experience much safer.
Everyone seems to be talking about Google’s open source browser today huh? Instead of rambling on that as well, I will just give you some links so you can check what the fuzz is all about.
Here is a link to the comic book that Google used to introduce the project (yeah I find it weird as well, but hey its Google).
Here is a link to the official Google Blog, where they commented on the launch:
All of us at Google spend much of our time working inside a browser. We search, chat, email and collaborate in a browser. And in our spare time, we shop, bank, read news and keep in touch with friends — all using a browser. Because we spend so much time online, we began seriously thinking about what kind of browser could exist if we started from scratch and built on the best elements out there. We realized that the web had evolved from mainly simple text pages to rich, interactive applications and that we needed to completely rethink the browser. What we really needed was not just a browser, but also a modern platform for web pages and applications, and that’s what we set out to build.
Here is a link to the TechCrunch article, which claims that Chrome is a direct punch at Microsoft:
Make no mistake. The cute comic book and the touchy-feely talk about user experience is little more than a coat of paint on top of a monumental hatred of Microsoft.
Chrome, the Webkit-based Google browser that launches tomorrow at Google.com/chrome, will give them a real foothold on the desktop and way more control over how web applications perform. While it seems that Chrome is aimed at IE and Firefox, the target is really Windows.
And here is a link to post defending that unless the browser manages to take some market share, it won’t matter:
This has the blogosphere all excited. Everyone is writing about the features of the new browser, and its strategic significance. The product sounds great, but I can only get but so excited.
Because as a developer, Chrome seems to me to be little more than pissing in the wind.
Microsoft’s Internet Explorer controls around 75% of the browser market, and that’s not the bad news. The bad news is that Internet Explorer version 6 has 25% of the market.