Delving back into project history long before we launched publicly in 2008, the autoupdate project was one of the very first we started working on. The idea was to give people a blank window with an autoupdater. If they installed that, over time the blank window would grow into a browser. And today, some five years after our autoupdater started updating a mostly blank window that could barely load webpages, it is now an engine for delivering an incredibly sophisticated web technology platform onto our users’ computers, which in turn allows web app developers to build amazing new online experiences. I have never seen such an effective platform update mechanism before.
How cool is that??! :)
Invisibility is a key part of one of Chrome’s four “S”s - simplicity. We seek not to bother the user with information that is irrelevant. As important as it might seem to engineers for our users to weigh fully a variety of considerations relating to our software, in reality they have better things to be doing. They’re trying to find a restaurant, check an email, post a facebook update, and then get the hell away from the computer. Every time the user agent steps in between the user and their task, we slow them down and diminish their enjoyment. Content, not Chrome.
What an awesome way to think about design.
(If you liked this, you might like Freedom of Speech on the Internet.)