Tuesday, September 2, 2008

First experience with Google Chrome

Whereyougonnabe makes heavy use of JavaScript in the browser, using the Ext JS library, which provides a very rich and dynamic user experience but also tests the limits of browser compatibility. This is especially true when running inside Facebook, which provides another level of complexity and has a knack of showing up obscure low level differences between browsers - we have hit several tricky issues in handling sessions and security recently. FireFox has generally given us the fewest issues. Early on we had some problems with Safari, and today we have had a day of major frustration as we were about to launch a new release, everything was running fine on FireFox and Safari, and on Internet Explorer if you ran our application outside a Facebook frame, but inside Facebook Internet Explorer has suddenly started abruptly refusing to load pages with no helpful error messages - we're still bashing our heads against the wall trying to track this one down.

So I have to say my initial reaction to seeing that Google has announced a new browser called Chrome was "oh no, not another browser to support".  It's currently Windows only which I also wasn't too keen on. But nevertheless I fired up my Windows laptop for the second time in a week to try it out. And I was pleasantly surprised and impressed that it worked first time with whereyougonnabe with no apparent problems :) !!  And subjectively it seemed fast too. We'll be testing it more thoroughly of course, but first impressions are encouraging in terms of compatibility with complex Javascript applications, which Google claim as a major design aim for Chrome.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Google Chrome Beta installed and worked first time on my Vista system too - it seemed quick and easy to use, taking on board all my Firefox favourites and links.

However, that's where the experience ended - my system would thereafter only reboot in "Safe Mode" - shutting down before start-up completed. I had to uninstall Chrome in "Safe Mode" before the system would boot normally.

From my experience, I recommend waiting for the Release version and avoid installing the Beta.

AKS Devon

Peter Zentai said...

Same experiences with our RIA application. Chrome simply rocks and IE8 became what I never thought it would ever become: 3 parallel sources of problems...

Anonymous said...

Well timed post--we've spent 3 man days in the last week dealing with IE-specific problems.

I'm mentally calculating how many Flex IDE licenses I can buy with that money...


Brian Timoney

Peter Batty said...

In case anyone is interested, we tracked down our obscure IE issue - it turned out that something changed in Facebook on Monday evening which caused an incompatibility with Ext 2.2 when running inside Facebook (everything ran fine with FireFox, Safari and Chrome). Reverting to Ext 2.1 did the trick for the moment.

The Fuzz said...

great browser like it a lot

Anonymous said...

Wow almost a year later and I am just now jumping on board with Google Chrome. I run Window's XP and I must say so far I'm quite impressed. For the first time I got a browser that works like it says it would. I'm not impressed w at all with IE8 because it ran slowly and would totally lock what-ever I was doing. Even after diagnostics it didn't help.
Fire-fox was o.k. but it kept getting slower, and slower and will not run You-tube. That's the 3 something version. I like Chrome because it is very fast so far on my computer and it is simple. You don't have to have 50 million different tool bars to do what is needed and that therefore doesn't clutter up my page. Now they've got it so I can tweak it to my taste. So Google Chrome by far the best after trying so many browsers. I'm hoping it will continue to be this way and doesn't shut down. texasmamaof2