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A look at some of the coolest bits of Chrome experimentation out there, in honor of Google’s 1000th Chrome experiment being published this week.
What a long, strange series of web gizmos it’s been
Clever web designers have been testing the boundaries of what’s possible in a web browser via Google Chrome experiments for nearly six years – and earlier this week, Google announced that the 1,000th Chrome experiment had gone live. Here’s a look at some of the more memorable ones.
GeoGuessr is a hugely addictive little game that places you at a random location in Google Street View and challenges you to guess where you are. It even drew some news coverage when it blew up in 2013.
There are a LOT of cool-looking little visualization tools featured in Google’s Chrome experiments, but Silk is one of the more impressive ones. I particularly like how this turned out – sort of like stained glass and lasers.
It’s hardly going to replace serious CAD for design work, but House configurator is an interesting step in the direction of browser-based architecture, boasting a surprisingly in-depth set of features.
Another addictive little time-waster – you find yourself hoping that a particular scene stays static for just a second, so that you can match something up, then curse when it changes. Interesting, and impressive the way they were able to get the video to play in discrete little fragments.
TEXT: This is me, so to speak – another highly popular theme in the Chrome experiments lineup is using the webcam, so it seemed unfair to leave out one of the more interesting apps I stumbled across.
Similarly, this is me at my desk, being transformed into ASCII art. And to think the best I can do is the occasional emoji.
Type the words to shoot down the enemy spaceships – it’s like Mavis Beacon meets Asteroids. Neat visuals, and it’s a pleasure to ripple off a word like “recalibrated” and watch a volley of fire blast a big orange battleship to smithereens.
Way to Go
It’s tough to know how to describe this one – part film, part interactive art project, all trippy. It’s certainly beautiful in an offbeat, lyrical kind of way, but it’s sort of tough to know what the point is. I guess it really doesn’t matter.
The titular “wormz” are apparently attracted to lines and colors in digital pictures, because this is actually me again, sitting at my desk. It’s not the most accurate representation, but it’s a neat little experiment, nonetheless.
If you were like me, a Spirograph was something you played with for about five minutes and then got bored – I was not the most contemplative or artistic kid ever. Nevertheless, this digital version is remarkably full-featured and leads nicely into our next entrant…
I don’t wish to alarm you, but this is basically an endless box of Legos, placed entirely at your disposal. No more hurting your hands pulling them apart, no more wishing you had just a couple more of the little skinny ones.
Playing this made me think long thoughts about the forthcoming J.J. Abrams flicks, and the visuals, for a browser game, are pretty darn good. Shame about the limited gameplay, but who can really have enough X-wings?
Impressively, this works outside its own little sandbox – place “bombs” on a website to see the text blasted asunder and scattered across the page. Take that, top stories!
A dark room
It’s difficult to know what to say about A Dark Room – it’s just a simple text game that takes place in real-time. Right? Actually, it’s that, plus a stark illustration of how powerful human reward schedules are. Strangely addictive, and just seems to keep going…
16 November 2023