Google has scarcely stopped for a breather since launching its cloud-based Chrome OS as an alternative to PC and Mac operating systems. Now its Chromium group has announced an effort to replace the traditional HTTP web browser language with a new protocol that supposedly boosts Internet browsing by up to 55 percent.
HTTP currently is the protocol used by all web servers and browsers, hence the "http" in front of web addresses. But, as noted by Ars Technica, HTTP becomes inefficient when transferring many small files on many modern websites.
By contrast, Google's cleverly named SPDY protocol (pronounced SPeeDY, get it?) can compress and handle the individual requests via one connection that's SSL-encrypted. That allows higher-priority files to slip through immediately without becoming backed up behind large files.
SPDY has shown up to 55 percent web page loading when tested under lab conditions, and the Google team has released their source code for public feedback.
But Ars Technica raises some points of caution about the mandatory SSL encryption requiring more processing power from small devices and computers alike. Requiring SSL could also worsen the problem where server operators neglect SSL encryption and unintentionally encourage people to ignore warnings about unsecured websites.
Still Google's team recognizes these problems and has already proposed workaround solutions. An open approach has already proven a smashing success on Google's Android operating system, but redesigning the Internet's architecture will undoubtedly prove trickier in the days to come.
I love the logo sooo much.
Google: taking over everything since 2007.
The logo reminds me too much of the Pokeman ball. I hate Pokeman.
I have a few questions about this proposal.
1. How does the Big G plan to profit from this concept? Before I sign on, I'd like to know if their strategy will have a negative impact on me. (I'm not against capitalism, I just want to know the business model.)
2. Is the speed improvement limited to the many small files scenario? If so, is that a mainstream mode? Also, are other operational modes worse with this system?
3. Will this limit the browser choices?
4. Will there be compatibility issues that affect access to http websites? How about access to web pages that have been locally saved?
In my business I deal with degital file uploading and downloading; I think I'm going to like that SSL idea.
@ford2go: I'm not an insider (to SPDY) but here's my take on questions 2 and 4:
Q2. The advantage of SPDY is that the amount needed connections is reduced to only one. This leads to a definitive improvement in overall performance, as a lot of the overhead in traffic consists of opening and closing of connections. This will not significantly improve transfer rates for large binary files, except in an indirect way (as reducing the amount of connections frees up bandwidth).
Q4. I think you are asking the wrong question, kind of. SPDY and HTTP are separate protocols altogether, and I don't see any particular reason why a SPDY capable browser wouldn't be able to handle HTTP also.
"by up to 55 percent" != "twice as fast"
it's half as fast. Twice as fast would be "by up to 200%" unless i'm missing something
You really are missing something. The word increase. "Increasing by up to" means adding to the current which would be 100%, and increasing by up to 200% would make it three times as fast as the original.
my only concerns are for the security features. are we going to experience new holes in our internet browsers?
No, darcon77 is right. A 55% increase does not equal twice as fast. It equals 155% vs 100% or running at 1 1/2 times the speed. Come on people.
Google is playing a massive game of chess and it's hard to see where the profit is going to come from with all these projects. You could buy their line that if the internet works better then people will use it more and that makes them money, but I'm not so willing to take that at face value. They are destroying the business models of everyone from microsoft to tomtom to "yellowpages, what's that?" and it can't be just for the fun of it.
My guess is that once the infrastructure of the web is being run by good software and hardware then they will be best situated to design profitable services on top of their own layer. At that point they will have everyone checkmated and it will be hard to go back. They are creating their own version of the internet that runs on everything google (Chrome OS, Chrome browser, Google DNS, Google SPDY, GO programming language, Google Cloud Services, Google Wave etc..), they are going to offer a better, even if branded, version of the web and we will either choose the "old" version that hasn't been updated in awhile or their version. In their version they will reign supreme and have the facebooks and twitters of the world surrounded.
It's the only explanation I can come up with for their all encompassing advance on anything and everything internet related. Not even microsoft was ever this ambitious...
Using SSL to speed up the net does not make sense. Whenever you switch communication over to SSL it naturally slows down significantly. You are no longer just asking for packets of data and allowing them to get to you via any route possible - which gets you around most roadblocks on the net.
SSL occurs when two computers are connected to each other using the HTTPS communication protocol or language of you will. Every packet has to be coded at one end and decoded at the other before it's put back together as a document. An awful lot more work being done there. This is faster? I don't think so.
These tests were done in a lab. In the real world the Internet follows real world conditions. A switch is out in Atlanta so traffic is rerouted through Mobile, AT & T has a slow circuit so things are automatically routed around that. That's the way the net is. This slows everything down even more. We have all watched a frozen hourglass of dozens of minutes. HTTPS is much worse than HTTP for this condition.
HTTPS is something that was thrown together rather quick and as someone that has wrestled with shopping carts and this protocol for many years I can tell you it was not meant to make anything fast. It was designed to be secure and the folk that designed it are not going to want to fiddle with it at all.
Acceptance will be almost universally blocked. 95% of the web sites out there today are not using SSL which costs money and takes someone that knows how to install it. It sucks up memory and lowers the number of web sites that can be put on a server. This would easily double the cost of having a web site. Lots of Mom & Pop websites out there would go bust or just not embrace the new protocol.
Google is powerful and it could ram acceptance through ICAAN and the World Wide Web Consortium but I don't see anyone outside those organizations embracing it.
Then there is Apple and Microsoft. Not sure how they will feel about this. If it's good for Google, it's probably bad for them, even is it's not apparent at this time why.
My suspicion is that they are using the SSL HTTPS protocol to compress files for transmission. Bad idea. AOL has been doing this for years and it really degrades the visuals and we all know how fast they are.
Smart people are capable of dumb ideas at times. This is one of them.
I just hope Google do not push people too hard to use it, e.g. not being able to reach certain websites and/ or services without SPDY will be a big NO-NO!