By Jared Newman | Thursday, December 16, 2010 at 6:02 pm
Now, you can check out those features yourself by installing the latest Chrome beta. Among them: 3D web app demos using WebGL, sandboxing of Flash and Google Instant directly in the omnibar.
The neatest of the new 3D demos is Body Browser, a 3D visualization of the human body. You can pan around the model by clicking and dragging the mouse, and there’s a slider bar that peels away each layer of skin, bones, muscles and organs. I also liked the WebGL Music Visualizer, which could someday add a nice visual component to web-based music apps.
Full-blown games are probably further off than these simple demos, though there is a Java port of Quake 2 that uses WebGL. Still, you’re welcome to place bets on when WebGL apps will begin to replace Flash.
Speaking of which, Flash sandboxing is a new Chrome beta feature that isolates the plug-in from the rest fo the operating system for security purposes. In other words, hopefully it’s a feature you’ll never notice.
Finally, Google Instant extends to the omnibar in Chrome beta, but not by default. You need to click “Options,” and “Enable Instant for faster searching and browsing” to flip the feature on. When Google introduced Instant on its home page, I was ambivalent about it, and I still am. But Instant for Chrome adds something new: It predicts and loads web sites in addition to web searches. I’m not sold on the idea, but I want another day or two of regular web browsing before rendering a verdict.