Turbo-boost your Chrome browser (Rockmelt too!)

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Icon - ExperimentIf you’re using Google Chrome or any other browser that’s based of the Chromium project, such as Rockmelt, here’s a neat trick to add some more speed to the already zippy browser.

Yes. You can never get enough speed. 🙂

It seems that Chrome has a ‘hidden’ section where you can enable some experimental tweaks to enable features that’s so new, it could potentially blow up your browser (sort of).

To get there, just key in “about:flags” at the address bar and you’ll see the following screen. Do note that I’m using Rockmelt browser in the screen capture.


There is three options (two if you’re using the Mac version of the browser) that you’d like to look out for to be enabled.

1. GPU Accelerated Compositing

If it’s not already enabled, just click on the Enable button to … well enable it.

For the geek in you, here’s a link to the Chromium projects page that fully explains the feature. For the rest of you, this feature basically uses your PC’s graphics card to render the web pages. What this means in a nutshell is a faster and more efficient way to render the web pages.

2. GPU Accelerated Canvas 2D (Windows only as of this blog post)

Canvas is a HTML 5 element that allows scriptable and dynamic 2D objects and bitmaps to be rendered and manipulated interactively. What this feature does is that it again leverages on the GPU processing power to render Canvas 2D elements. This should significantly improve the performance of HTML 5-based sites that uses a lot of the Canvas elements.

3. Web Page Prerendering

Although it’s not clear how Google has made Chrome to speculate what you’d want to go next and how it will pre-render the web pages before you can say ‘what’s next’.

But if the following description of Chrome Prerendering is the same as this feature, then this feature may or may not benefit in actual real-life speed increments since it relies on the <link rel=prefetch> element to be invoked. But either way, there’s no harm in getting this feature enabled.

So there you go, the three experimental features to help you browse the Internet faster.

Wait, before I end this post, there’s also a rather interesting feature for Mac users.

Bonus: Tab Overview

Tab Overview

This is a real cool feature for Mac users. Think Expose but for your Chrome tabs. What the feature does is it allows you to do a three finger swipe down to provide you a preview of all your tabs in the browser just like Expose. See the screenshot above and you’ll see what I mean. To select a particular tab, just click on it.

So there you go, a few really cool (and pretty stable for a) experimental features that’s hiding within the Chrome browser.

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