I have a couple of Web sites I use regularly, including one for checking my personal e-mail via a Web interface. This particular interface is really nice, but it's always been horribly slow. For that reason, I only use it when necessary.
I tried it using Chrome and was impressed. The first time the Compose box opened, it was a little sluggish as all those formatting buttons slowly drew. But the next time I ran it, it opened instantly, and definitely felt like I was using a desktop (in other words, non-Web) application. Now this, of course, is just anecdotal and not a benchmark test. But it was fast.
But is Chrome's V8 faster than the latest development build of Firefox? And is it faster than anything Microsoft might secretly be doing? (I'm bettin' that Microsoft is working on its own native compilers, although I don't know for sure.)
So far, the jury is out. I've seen pages "proving" through benchmarks that V8 is faster than Firefox's new engine. But I've also seen pages "proving" that Firefox's engine is faster. It's hard to say. One thing is for sure: They're both fast, and they both fly. And that's great news for us developers, and even better news for the users across the planet fighting with these slow Web 2.0 applications.
Jeff Cogswell is the author of Designing Highly Useable Software. Currently Jeff is a senior editor with Ziff Davis Enterprise. Prior to joining Ziff, he spent about 15 years as a software engineer, working on Windows and Unix systems, mastering C++, PHP, and ASP.NET development. He has written over a dozen books.