The dawn of the internet and the .com bubble fundamentally changed the way we work on a computer. Today, the Internet is our portal to the world. We use it to run our businesses, connect with friends and family, research and what not. It has been ever since the launch of world’s first browser, Netscape Navigator. Ever since, browsers have become more powerful and robust applications. They have been keys to the vast and awesome universe of the internet. Google, yesterday, has decided to change just that.
Web applications, as the name suggests, are applications that use a web browser as a client. Till yesterday web applications were a way of saying “this app will launch and function inside your browser.” Why till yesterday you might ask. Well, Google changed the fundamental concept of web applications by launching web apps that can work outside of your browser. You can find these applications after installing a latest update of Google Chrome.
Google’s Sundar Pichai, Senior VP Apps and Chrome, gave a clue regarding the development of such apps in Google I/O Conference 2013. Although Mozilla Firefox has been talking about launching a similar project called Prism since 2010, the mighty Google pulled it off in a few months. Erik Kay, engineering director at Google wrote in a blog post
Today we’re unveiling a new kind of Chrome App, which brings together the speed, security and flexibility of the modern Web with the powerful functionality previously only available with software installed on your devices.
Being a web developer, the idea of detaching web applications from web browser is a thrilling one. It’d give us a lot of freedom to explore and a lot of ways of doing things that we weren’t able to do within the restrictive environment of a web browser. Some advantages of such independence include the ability to work in a true run-time environment as opposed to state-less web apps, the ability of a Chrome web app running on your desktop utilizing the power of your awesome graphics card as opposed to limited computing resources allocated to the browser by the operating system. The list is never-ending, really.
Let us all welcome the new chapter in web-based applications.