Google Operating System

Tips for Making Websites Run Faster

Posted: 24 Jun 2009 03:09 AM PDT

Installing a fast browser is not always enough to have a good experience when you browse the web: many web pages aren't optimized for performance. To help webmasters improve their sites, Google launched a new section as part of Google Code: "Let's make the web faster", which includes useful articles, videos and downloadable tools.

You'll learn how to optimize CSS declarations, how to optimize JavaScript code and avoid memory leaks, how to use the best image format and prefetch resources.

Google also released a Firebug plug-in for Firefox that evaluates web pages and provides suggestions to improve them. Here are the suggestions provided for this blog's homepage:

* There is 58.8kB worth of JavaScript. Minifying could save 15.7kB (26.7% reduction). Google provides the minified versions of all the inline blocks and external files.

* The following cacheable resources have a short freshness lifetime. Specify an expiration at least one month in the future for the following resources: [list of resources].

* The following domains only serve one resource each. If possible, avoid the extra DNS lookups by serving these resources from existing domains.

* An inline script block was found in the head between an external CSS file and another resource. To allow parallel downloading, move the inline script before the external CSS file, or after the next resource.

* A width and height should be specified for all images in order to speed up page display.

* Serve the following static resources from a domain that doesn't set cookies: [list of resources].

New Options for Translating Web Pages

Posted: 23 Jun 2009 02:44 PM PDT

Google's translation service has more options when you translate web pages. You can now set a different destination language and translate a new web page by entering its address in the persistent input box. There's also a new interface that displays the translation in tooltips, so you can still read the original text.

Bing Translator, Microsoft's translation service, has an interesting option that shows the original page and the translation side by side, much like in Google Translator Toolkit. This interface is very useful for those who are familiar with multiple languages and Google should add it as an option.

{ via Blogoscoped Forum }

A Retro Plastic Box

Posted: 23 Jun 2009 12:05 PM PDT

Keith Coleman, Gmail's product manager, points to a product that can be bought from eBay: a full version of Microsoft Office Outlook 2007. If you think it's not very interesting, read the description:
It's brand new and never been opened. My boss bought it right before I moved the whole company over to Google Apps.

We never looked back, but here's your opportunity to live it up, 90's style, with this great, retro piece of Microsoft 2007 software.

Unique features include:

* Lengthy key you have to register with a company!
* Real, plastic disks known as "CD's".
* Huge files saved ON YOUR COMPUTER!
* The thrill of wondering if you've backed up your data recently after your on-site hard drive dies.
* Appeased paranoia that your contacts will never be extracted by an international organization bent on stealing your identity and submitting LOL cats to all your business contacts.

Throw off the Web2.0 zeitgeist, and know that your entire business can fit in a single plastic box that can easily be left under a train seat.

As a bonus, your software will be Platform Dependent, meaning it will only run on "Windows" (not included).

While mocking Microsoft Office is endearing, many businesses still need to use it and the transition to Google Apps is not always easy. That's probably the reason why Google started to offer a tool that synchronizes Google Apps with Outlook. "You get the cost savings, security and reliability of Google Apps, while employees can use the interface they prefer for email, contacts and calendar. Google Apps Sync for Microsoft Outlook is a plug-in for Outlook 2003 or 2007 that lets you keep using your familiar Outlook interface after switching from Microsoft Exchange Server to Google Apps."

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