Google Chrome App Maker

One of the nice features of the newly released beta of Google Chrome is the feature that makes it easy to convert a tab into a standalone desktop application shortcut which you can add to your desktop, quick launch and start menu. I’ve already gotten Google Reader, Flickr and Zoho Docs “application-i-fied”, and no doubt Facebook, Google Docs, and my other frquently-used web apps will follow. A major advantage of this is that the applications launch in their own independent windows whereas links launch in tabs in a separate instance of the Chrome browser. This reinforces the application feel of the web application. If, like, me you keep your frequently visited web sites on your browser home page, you can now instead make them into application shortcuts and add them to your windows startup folder instead. I’ve created a short screen cast to demonstrate this feature and how it works: I’m sure you’ll agree that it’s easy!

If you are not yet prepared to ditch Firefox and your carefully collected set of extensions, you can achieve a similar feat with Mozilla Prism and the Prism for Firefox Extension as described in this LifeHack article.

Author: cpjobling

Senior lecturer, College of Engineering, Swansea University