Using Chrome

It’s taken awhile, but I’m finding myself starting to use Chrome as a browser more and more regularly. Firefox has started to get bloated again. I just don’t see why it seems to take so much memory, if I let it run awhile it tasks close to half of the 4G I’ve got on my macbook. Things start to bog down after a day or two of running and maybe I’m being too demanding, but I just don’t feel that I should have to restart a browser periodically to maintain performance.

There seems to be some healthy competition again in the browser space and Chrome is pulling ahead with the JavaScript performance. I had stuck with Firefox for a long time because it had Firebug, which is probably the single most useful web development tool out there. But now that JavaScript libraries like YUI are getting so much more solid and stable I’m finding that I don’t need to dive in with Firebug as much.

Overall I’m just happy to see that I have a choice. While performance and stability are great, I hope there’s more competition among the browsers as web application platforms and not just web content distribution. There’s still a long way to go in this area.

Trusting Facebook

There’s been a lot of discussion on the web over the last several weeks on how much trust we can put into Facebook when it comes to handling private data. They’re making a play to be the primary repository of identity on the web. The hub that other web sites link off of to determine personal connections and demographics for a user. Facebook already has a huge lead in this area with 400+ million users that are using actual names instead of screen names.

It would be nice to have a place where we can set up who our friends and coworkers are as well as what we’d like to share with them. Having to recreate this network each time we want to use a new site is a complete pain. But who can we trust to store this valuable info?

Leo Laporte has mentioned in his podcasts that for some reason he just doesn’t trust Facebook as much as he would trust a company like Google to fill this role. I agree wholeheartedly that it’s risky to trust Facebook. For me, the core of this mistrust is that I feel that Facebook hasn’t yet found its truly profitable niche yet like Google has. Google makes so much money in search ads that it can afford to not make money in other areas and take the high ground when it comes to privacy and openness. Facebook doesn’t have this profit center yet to support the other areas of its business. The scary part is that the data that Facebook collects could be quite valuable. It’s really going to come down to where they decide to draw the line on how to use our data. And because this is still unknown and they’ve taken several missteps in the past, it’s difficult to really trust Facebook.