Chrome Beta Gets Google Instant, WebGL 3D Tech (And More)

Chris CrumTechnology

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Google recently held a Chrome event in which it showed off some new things they are doing with their popular web browser (not to mention the opening of the Chrome Web Store and the introduction of Chrome OS). 

Now, some of the things Google showed off are available in a beta release of the browser. For one, you can turn on Chrome Instant (Google Instant for Chrome's Omnibox). If turned on, web pages you frequently visit will begin to load as soon as you start typing. Search results and "in-line predictions" will also instantly appear.

Google is also bringing Chrome's existing "sandboxing" technology for web pages to the Flash Player Chrome plug-in (on Windows). 

"The sandbox adds an additional layer of protection to further guard against malicious pages that try to hijack your computer or steal private information from your hard drive," explains Chrome software engineer Carlos Pizano. "Based on this groundwork in the beta, we'll be bringing the sandboxed Flash Player to Chrome for Mac and Linux in future releases as well."

The beta also includes WebGL, a new technology for 3D graphics the company showed off at the event. "WebGL is a 3D graphics API for JavaScript that developers can use to create fully 3D web apps," explains software engineer Kenneth Russell. "It is based on the OpenGL ES 2.0 API, which should be familiar to many 3D graphics developers. Google, Mozilla, Apple, Opera and graphics hardware vendors have been working together to standardize WebGL for over a year now, and since the spec is just about final at this point, we wanted to get our implementation out there for feedback."

One application that utilizes WebGL is the "Body Browser," which Google highlighted at the event. This is actually now available as a Google Labs experiment (it was built by a Googler in their "20% time"). 

There is a gallery available where you can look at available Chrome experiments for WebGL.

Chris Crum

Chris Crum has been a part of the WebProNews team and the iEntry Network of B2B Publications since 2003. Follow Chris on Twitter, on StumbleUpon, on Pinterest and/or on Google: +Chris Crum.