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I must say it was a fantastic time to watch the web evolving over those months. As every browser over a short period of time but IE produced JavaScript engines that were not just slightly faster, but radically faster websites adapted and there was within months sites would load in seconds everyone but on IE where it would be minutes. It introduced a binary incompatibility of sorts on the web and users were now abandoning IE because the sites they wanted to use were too slow to be useful.

To a lesser degree we are starting to see a similar post of article starting with Opera, Safari, and IE working on reducing their energy usage while oddly it is Chrome that is silent. Just like before a product with a significantly superior feature has caused me to switched. But this time it was back to Safari from Chrome. But the Chrome team is not asleep at the wheel like the Microsoft was and I am expecting/hoping within a year or two there to be a post with dramatic energy savings made by the Chrome team.

I want to preface this with a warning that this is 100% conjecture. Literally none of this has any proof...

I personally don't think chrome has anything "up their sleeve". From the looks of what they have been focusing on recently, they really dug themselves a hole with their technical debt in the V8 engine.

It's too complicated, and it looks like their upgrade path has it getting worse before it gets better. They aren't planning on switching to "Ignition -> Turbofan" until mid-late 2017 (which is expected to reduce memory usage, but also will reduce speed slightly at first), so that means that until then, it will be "Fullcodegen -> crankshaft or turbofan and sometimes ignition only in some codepaths". It's only getting more complicated as they try to write out their crankshaft compiler. IIRC ignition can't interface with cranshaft, while it can with turbofan, but turbofan is significantly slower than cranshaft for many things right now, and fullcodegen is WAY to slow in parsing (and re-parsing, and re-re-parsing) code to compete with Chakra which just starts SOO much faster because of that.

On the non-javascript side, servo is proving to be a MASSIVE amount of work, and I honestly don't think that blink is going to be able to be retrofitted easily to get similar gains. And nobody has heard a peep about a "secret new web engine being developed at google", so I really don't think they have one (or if they do, it's still a few years out at best).

I love chrome, but it's not in a good position. Edge is consistently faster in javascript execution, Safari is significantly better to the battery (if missing a pretty large chunk of newer features), and when Firefox starts integrating Servo, they are going to be king of layout/painting/rendering speeds (which is by far one of the biggest bottlenecks in modern web apps).

I hope they prove me wrong, but my hopes aren't high at this time.

Yes, well if they are really running an eye tracker with your webcam to time GC pauses, then it's a case of robbing Peter to pay Paul.

But umm... they don't really do that, right?

I think that was tongue in cheek. There are related ideas though, like doing aggressive GC of tabs which are invisible. Browsers are doing better and better jobs of prioritizing work based on how it will affect user perceptions of performance.

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