Web 2.0 NYC Panel: The Future of Browsers

Ojan ?? from Google
Brendan Eic – Mozilla
Chris Wilson – MS Internet Explorer

Question: 2022 roadmap for HTML. Too long to wait? What have you guys done about HTML 5.

Brendan: HTML 5 is big. We’ve done canvas, we’ve done offline support. It won’t be 2022, itn eeds to be sooner.

Ojan, can you comment on plans for HTML 5 w. Chrome: Sure. ALl credit for HTML 5 features in Chrome goes to the Webkit team. The other aspect is Google Gears, which led a number of features that have sort of become HTML 5 features. We wil move forward to support HTML 5 features in Chrome. I’m excited about UI elements. There’s an HTML 5 spec fo thigns like toolbars and menus, which currently takes a ridiculous amount of javascript, needs to be sent over the wire. If it was native, would make things a lot faster and easier. I’d love to seem more features like that in HTML 5.

Chris, HTML 5 features any time soon? Answer: We’ve actually taken much of the features in IE 8 have been pulled from the HTML 5 spec.

Brendan, how do you keep up with big companies as an open source provider? Well, we’ve been doing this for 10 years. Open has advantages: recruiting, partnering, etc.

Chris tell us about Canvas in HTML 5. Have you note implemented Canvas to push people to Silverlight? Well, Silverlight is an end-to-end platform. That’s not the platform that my team works on. We certainly recognize that we need to have vector graphic support. We decided that in the next product cycle we’d be better off doing other things first, but we will start to look at vector graphics.

Ojan, with Chrome, my quesiton is, what’s the target audience. Are you going after consumers to take away from IE, or for developers. A: well the primary goal of google chrome is to make developing Web apps better. Down the road, the intention is to build many features in HTML 5. What it comes down to is Google wants browsers to do Web applications well.

Question about debugging…

IE Guy: Go try Beta 2 of IE 8. We’ve really expanded debugging capabilities.

Google guy: Google chrome has two different debuggint tools. They’re pretty decent. If you like firebug, check out the google webkit. It’s moving really quickly.

Question: How far is the browser away from being the operating system? When or if or do you preceive that in the future the primary way that even desktop apps will be with a browser-like API and development?

Google guy: It’s apples and oranges, frankly, comparing OS and a web browser. They’re really twoo totally differnt things. It’s not een clear what it means in some sense.

Brendan: Browsers have disintermediated the OS in some ways. Desktip apps built with web technolgies, like AIR.

Question: Why can’t browsers be consistent? Too many browsers! This is hell! What are you guys doing about it.

IE Guy: Yeah, we’re doing something to help this problem. 1. Investment in test week (?). We’ve been building out the test suite to the point where it really is an interop test. But we’re trying to pass at 100% by the time we ship. 2. Compatibility story we’ve been building. The way we’ve decided to enable you to say: work like ie7, until i update to ie 8.

Quesiton for google: Can developers tie in to the data on users to make experience data. “Google keeps some data to improve the browser experience” for people. “We currently have not plans to expose this data to users”…I don’t think it’ll happen.


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