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There's lots of scope for this kind of thing. My main concern would be whether a single WebKit control is the right way to go - it'd be nice to, for example, embed custom controls within the shell (but this might also be possible).

Yes, that's possible. Webkit embeds JS, and you can do the craziest of controls in JS, communicating with your process through JSON packets (at least, that's how I understand the article). This would need some extension mechanism at the side of the shell, though, but that's not rocket science.

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