Google always seems to grab the headlines. There are others working on Web 3.0 stuff, but few seem to grab attention like Google does. Now Google has gone in to the browser market with a product called Chrome.
Yeah – it’s a pretty lame name. Not sure what they were thinking there. But what does this have to do with Web 3.0 you might ask? There are some interesting features under the hood of this new browser that seem to be opening doors for Web 3.0 to become a reality. The first thing I noticed when trying out Chrome was how much they have tried to make the browser disappear from your screen. While I love many Firefox plug-ins, sometimes they start taking up too much screen space. If cloud computing becomes a reality, the browser will need to disappear as much as possible so people won’t get confused about which button/link to click.
Another way that Chrome is bridging the gap to Web 3.0 is by the creation of Application shortcuts. You can create a link to Gmail, Google Docs, or any other web-based application right on your desktop, start menu, or quick launch bar. While we all know that we could have done that for years now – I am betting few did because of the time involved. Chrome simplifies that process and makes your favorite Web 2.0 tools seem more like a real desktop tool. Well, at least when there is an Internet connection, that is.
There are also some major improvements behind the scenes and under the hood, all designed to make browsing faster, more stable, and more optimized for use with AJAX-powered Web 2.0/3.0 sites. There is a really long (almost never-ending) comic story online about all of the technical changes they made. Interesting, even if a little long. Google Chrome is a good start – but will this go somewhere or join Lively in the creepy “Google Graveyard of Abandoned Ideas”? Only time will tell.
(Lively is not even compatible with Chrome – kind of telling don’t ya think?)
Matt is currently an Instructional Designer II at Orbis Education and a Part-Time Instructor at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. Previously he worked as a Learning Innovation Researcher with the UT Arlington LINK Research Lab. His work focuses on learning theory, Heutagogy, and learner agency. Matt holds a Ph.D. in Learning Technologies from the University of North Texas, a Master of Education in Educational Technology from UT Brownsville, and a Bachelors of Science in Education from Baylor University. His research interests include instructional design, learning pathways, sociocultural theory, heutagogy, virtual reality, and open networked learning. He has a background in instructional design and teaching at both the secondary and university levels and has been an active blogger and conference presenter. He also enjoys networking and collaborative efforts involving faculty, students, administration, and anyone involved in the education process.