by a Thinker, Sailor, Blogger, Irreverent Guy from Madras

What is new in Google Chrome 26

The most exciting improvement in the yesterday’s release of Google Chrome browser version 26 is the cloud based spell checker.

Before the look into the spell checker functions, there are other other bug fixes and improvements in Google Chrome 26.  Eleven security holes are fixed in this edition of Chrome.  The number of bug fixes is surprisingly low for a stable channel release.  Normally about twenty or more fixes is expected in every major update to Chrome.  It might be due to 2 reasons, both inter-related.
  • Many of the bugs were fixed earlier to prep up the browser for the Pwn2Own contest, though Chrome 25 went down within hours (and was fixed within 24 hours).
  • Chrome 26 has been in beta channel only for a month or so, whereas till now the browser used to stay there for about 6 weeks.
List of bug fixes, as usual is available at their blog.

Chrome 26 also allows us to add Desktop shortcuts for multiple users (profiles), but this is just a user enhancement and does nothing to protect the privacy of individual user data.

For the first time Chrome 26 adds spell check function in Tamil (along with Korean and Albanian).  Otherwise it is the same spell check ability which has been available in Google Docs since March 2012 and in Google Search from time immemorial.  Additionally the custom dictionary will be synced across browsers and devices, if Google sync is enabled (just like bookmarks).

A word of caution though.  The spell checker works by sending data back to Google servers, the privacy may (or may not be) affected and may be concern for users worried about privacy.

To enable spell checking in Chrome 26, right click and check mark “Ask Google for Suggestions” in any text area - for e.g. the compose box in Blogger.  Before though, the spell checker options and the language packs should have been turned on [Hotdog -> Settings -> Advanced Settings -> Languages -> Language and input settings -> Enable spell checking -> Add -> Tamil].

Once it is done, switching between languages is easy with the right click context menu.  Chrome 26 spell checker works like a beauty, offering suggestions to words it thinks are crooked.

Nice, isn’t it?  Especially the Tamil spell check!


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