The Google Chrome Team recently released an online guidebook titled, “20 Things I Learned About Browsers and the Web.” This guidebook discusses technical topics about the technology that we use today, the internet, TCP/IP, browser securities and DNS, but in a children’s book fashion. Well, sort of. It explains the what, the hows and the whys of these technologies in a near layman’s term, with examples and analogies in the real world such as “a plug-in is to a browser as a pepperoni is to a pizza”. The illustrations by Christoph Niemann, provides a refreshing approach and breaks the ice when the topic seems too technical for the uneducated reader.
Below is the table of contents of the online guidebook:
Table of Contents
- What is the Internet? or, “You Say Tomato, I Say TCP/IP”
- Cloud Computing or, why is it ok for a truck to crush your laptop
- Web Apps or, “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Appiness”
- HTML5 or, in the beginning there was no <video>
- 3D in the Browser or, browsing with more depth
- A Browser Madrigal or, old vs. modern browsers
- Plug-ins or, pepperoni for your cheese pizza
- Browser Extensions or, superpowers for your browser
- Synchronizing the Browser or, why it’s ok for a truck to crush your laptop, part II
- Browser Cookies or, thanks for the memories
- Browsers and Privacy or, giving you choices to protect your privacy in the browser
- Malware, Phishing and Security Risks or, if it quacks like a duck but isn’t a duck
- How Modern Browsers Help Protect You From Malware and Phishing or, beware the ne’er-do-wells!
- Using Web Addresses to Stay Safe or, “my name is URL”
- IP Addresses and DNS or, the phantom phone booth
- Validating Identities Online or, ‘Dr. Livingstone, I presume?’
- Open Source and Browsers or, standing on the shoulders of giants
- 19 Things Later… or, a day in the clouds
What’s so good (or not so good) about this is that it is built on HTML5. The good thing is that, it utilizes modern features of the browser to display and present it’s content as interactive as it can be. With this, it can show an actual flipping of the pages as if you were reading an actual book. The presentation is superb with a simple, and neat design that highlights the book more without any intrusive graphics. I haven’t checked the page source but I think it also utilizes CSS3, which is evident by the box shadow around the book and some opacity changes to buttons and images. What’s not so good is that it must be viewed with a browser that (nearly) supports HTML5. Since HTML5 is not yet final, there are some discrepancies on which HTML5 tags are implemented on browsers. So, the best bet is to use updated modern browsers especially Google Chrome.
I think this online guidebook can be a great reference for people who are just starting to learn the technologies behind the technologies that are apparent now. A basic explanation to the complex terminologies is what newbies need in order to start learning in-depth concepts such as the internet. This may serve as a good foundation to those are a bit technophobic but wants to learn more.