10 most useful Google Chrome experiments
- — 12 April, 2010 15:27
When it comes to presenting graphically oriented programs through a browser, the usual go-to development platforms have been Adobe Flash and -- to a lesser extent -- Microsoft Silverlight. But other, more open technologies are starting to show promise.
1.Canvas Sketch: Fingerpainting for mobile devices
Canvas Sketch has the very basics of a paint program: freehand and line drawing, eraser, and fill tools; and tools to draw rectangular and circular shapes. Its color palette is limited to 26 colors, and no image can be larger than 501 by 334 pixels.
2. Impressionist: Monet-ize your photos
This image-manipulation tool is designed to do only one thing: convert a photograph into what looks like a painting. You start by uploading your image file to the Impressionist server. From there, you apply the oil-paint effect in one of two ways.
The first is by a freehand drawing method. You choose your brush size and shape, and then paint over any areas of your picture where you want to apply an ersatz oil colors look.
But the second is the most fun. Upon selecting the desired brush shape, size and width, you click "start" and your picture then comes alive as if thousands of paint brushes are dabbing and swirling it with oil paints. (The colors are derived from your original image's palette.) This real-time rendering runs continuously until you stop it. Using Impressionist just to watch this effect in motion is hypnotic.
3. Sketchpad: Drawing made easy
Its tools (such as for drawing, cropping and masking) work smoothly, as do its toolbar and canvas windows when you click on and drag to reposition them in the work area. Sketchpad's other strength is its huge variety of built-in patterns and gradients you can use in your image -- there's even a "spirograph" drawing tool.
4 Twitterbrowse: Find friends and followers
Enter the username of a Twitter account into its search box, and twitterbrowse pulls up the user photos of the friends and followers for that person, laying them out into a grid. These images can be sorted alphabetically, or by friends or followers. When you re-sort, the photos neatly shuffle into the selected order.
Click on the user photo of a friend or follower, and information about the total number of friends and followers for that username will slide out from the right side of the user photo. You can then click a link to jump to a new page where you can browse through the friends and followers -- arranged into its own grid -- for that selected Twitter user.
Slick as this is, it would be cool if its developer could add reading and writing tweets to his demo. That would make twitterbrowse a great alternative user interface for using Twitter.