Paul McFedries

“Information appears to stew out of me naturally, like the precious ottar of roses out of the otter.” —⁠Mark Twain

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Google Chrome and Chrome OS

If you're looking to get a head start on cloud computing or if you just want to know what the heck "cloud computing" could possibly be.

Front cover of the book The Complete Idiot's Guide to Google Chrome and Chrome OS

Book Info

  • Publisher: Alpha Books
  • Pages: 304
  • Price: US$16.95
  • Pub. date: August 3, 2010
  • Category: operating systems
  • Tags: beginner, cloud, networking

You may know When Dinosaurs Ruled the Earth as a goofy humans-coexisting-with-dinosaurs movie from the 1970s. However, in technology circles, "When Dinosaurs Ruled the Earth" refers to a grim humans-coexisting-with-mainframes story from the 1970s. I refer, of course, to IBM and its brontosaurus-sized computers (called mainframes). Those hulking machines aren't extinct (for example, they're still used for massive tasks such as airline scheduling, payroll processing, and tracking Lost plotlines), but they were supplanted by a couple of kids in a garage who founded Microsoft and built the Windows-centric world we live in today.

However, Microsoft is now more than 35 years old and has dominated the desktop for most of that time. Is Microsoft the new dinosaur of the tech world? If so, then what digital mammals are looking to take over that world? (Man, stretching metaphors can be so tiring!) Most pundits and prognosticators think it just might be Google. This nimble and adaptable company already dominates search and online advertising, and now it's taking more or less direct aim at Microsoft with a new operating system called Google Chrome OS.

But Google's goal isn't to dominate the desktop, because there is no desktop in Chrome OS. Instead, everything happens online: creating documents, spreadsheets, and presentations, collaborating with other people, e-mailing sharing photos, you name it. It's a radically new way of computing, and if you find the whole idea head-scratchingly odd and more than a little confusing, then you've come to the right place. Welcome to The Complete Idiot's Guide to Google Chrome and Chrome OS.

In this book, you'll learn everything you need to know (but, thankfully, not everything there is to know) about Google Chrome OS and its tied-at-the-hip partner, the Google Chrome Web browser. From understanding this "cloud computing" business that lies at the heart of Google Chrome OS, to configuring the system, surfing with Chrome, to getting things done "out there" where Chrome OS lives. All that, and I promise you we'll even have a bit of fun while we're at it.

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