Chromebook Pixel - Small Laptop With The Size Of 13inch Macbook Air (Part 4)

9/22/2013 11:03:47 AM

Utility continued

For many of us, the browser is about communication and consumption. We watch movies and listen to music in the browser. We chat with friends, send email, participate in social networking and even appear in the chat videos and voice calls over the browser. Of course, we read and see pictures. However, if we need to work, we will do more than communication and consumption, they need to produce. That means the appropriate application is opened. Right?

Writing is always one of the strong points of the Chrome OS, and in the previous reviews we said the limitations of the operating system really help to make it an excellent tool for writers. It's hard to not write when all you have one text field. Pretty much of the writing applications are just one click away, as excellent Google Docs, Microsoft Office 365 and Writer. The appearance of packaged applications is opening up opportunities for a variety of applications to step outside the browser window. Txt is the original favorite, simple but adaptable, and it does not get stuck in one tab.

<TXT>, a packaged app

<TXT>, a packaged app

Most of the printing, web ... etc. all need more than just text. A few years ago, there was the excitement exploding around the web image editing applications, and everyone involved, including Adobe and Flickr. Since then, the hype has gone, and innovation too. There are two factors that limit the attractiveness of these applications. First, there are limitations related to the size and type of file. This is mainly due to the fear of bandwidth, for users and services server. If we have carte to upload all our large RAW files into one online editor and then edit them and save multiple copies, as we have done in the local applications, we will end up with gigabytes of transmission data. So even on the paid app, you constrain to the average size JPG image, enough for web publishing, but base on high DPI content actually appears, this method is quite limited.

The second limitation is in the applications themselves, they are simply but not enough. Some applications take the wizard method that you may be familiar from the application of Shutterfly. Upload photos and make a modest adjustment in one simple interface are easy to navigate. Excellent for a reasonable job but not great if you're serious about the editing. Want to control the rotation of the image? In Light room, you hold the rotation bar in Crop tab and adjust it as you like, in some image editing applications on the web, your choice is rotated 90 degrees each time. There are much more complete applications, but they have a price almost unbelievable: Flash. Pixlr is an excellent example about the web application with desktop UI, is controlled by Flash, although the software itself is limited with JPG. So this time, we hope in the future of the image editing web applications, but not until then.

Photo editing app Pixlr, driven by Flash

Photo editing app Pixlr, driven by Flash

So you can write, but images do not. Video? Not yet. Development? That's just one text editor, right? We thought about many lines of work and almost all end with the users putting the Chrome Remote Desktop to use. Even web developers will find themselves that are hampered by the inability to check compatibility IE or Firefox, and by the limited number of browser-based IDEs released. Finally, what we feel comfortable with writing and consumption. These experiences are really great, but utilities are still blockages. It may be time for Google to jump on and begin to develop its own increased productivity tools. Provide the powerful imaging tool and it becomes strong web printing equipment. Provide the ability to emulate browsing environments and we can see developers to flock Chromebook.

The Memory issue

Memory has long been a problem for Chromebook, but I do not understand why until recently. Of course incredibly high pixel number will not help things. To learn how they can cope with the problem we met Caesar Sengupta, product manager at Google for Chrome OS. I have never understood why the Chromebook always go with the modest built-in memory. Of course, it's not a matter of price, very cheap memory. It was sealed, and came in the denser package so not sure the space problem. Google is launching a conscious choice when using memory. So, what you do with 4 million pixels and 4GB of RAM? In this case, the first step is to show every page at 1,280x800, unless the available HiDPI asset. The final product is upscale to full 2,560x1,600, but the memory is not being punished as you might expect, of course, unless all the websites you visit they have the HiDPI assets.

The available HiDPI asset

The available HiDPI asset

Then there's the user behavior problem that has long bothered Chrome OS. The tabs linger and multiply. An untidy user can lid the memory assets of any system with this tab to another tab of the unread long text and GIFs of cats. With the memory is demanded heavily, the operating system will start to change the used data bits into a swap file on the local storage, an expansion of the system memory is saved on your hard drive. Even the fastest SSDs are several orders of magnitude slower than RAM, so the transition to the tab that the content has been pushed to the swap file will bring one blank screen when the content is put back into the system memory. The Chrome OS developers have a mission: an operating system that lives and breathes entirely in the system memory. That means there is no swap file. And that means that the user experience is often disappointing.

That same untidy user can subdue Chromebook with the open tabs, and no swap file, the pages that are purged from the memory are only refreshed when the focus is restored. Not a big deal, right? Assuming these tabs are actually the websites content management system and dozens of research tabs. Furthermore, you have just spent a recombined hour in a great post, and also take many times to check all studies. Go back to your CMS, refresh the page and all of your wonderful post disappeared into nothingness. Sure, there is a better alternative. Please?

The Chrome OS BSOD (plus touch indicators)

The Chrome OS BSOD (plus touch indicators)

Android enthusiasts will be familiar with computer, the method creates the archive page on the memory system can help alleviate the shortage of memory. Currently called zram, this technique perfectly fits the speed philosophy of Chrome than any other factor. The local storage options are vary too much about speed for their speed targets with Chrome, so the management of file page in the memory is the logical step. In fact, zram is better but not great. When one site is completely purged, you may have something similar BSOD Chrome and reload options. This system reduces to delay which occur from each page refresh automatically when you tab through them. I do not notice any particular delay that may represent the data of the specific page being called back from zram, which can be a good sign. But do not change the fact that the piece sliced from 4GB to use it as the file page is almost ineffective as adding another 4GB.

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