Google Chrome--Minus the Snooping

by Ostatic Staff - Sep. 25, 2008

As Downloadsquad is reporting, the Chromium source code for Google's Chrome open source browser has already been fashioned into a new version of the browser: Iron.  Apparently German company SRWare developed its knock-off of Chrome for users who are concerned about Google's policies for collecting private information--a constant Achilles heel for the company. SRWare's home page is in German, but the folks at the Incomplete News Project have published a translation with details on what SRWare's version does.

According to the Incomplete News Project, Iron veers away from Chrome by deactivating features in these ways:

  •   no alternative error messages, when having entered a wrong URL
  •   no sending of collected data to Google, if Iron has crashed
  •   no unwanted Google updater

A few days ago, we also covered CodeWeaver's successful WINE-based effort to get Chrome running on Mac OS X and Linux. The folks at Incomplete News Project report that they've tried to run Iron using CodeWeaver's CrossOver Mac, but couldn't get it to work.

In any case, this is interesting evidence that as an open source browser, Chrome is malleable. I've predicted before that Chrome's small footprint and attention from the open source community will quickly make it a competitive mobile browser, and I'm sticking to that. Also look for the Mac and Linux versions to show up quickly, along with unexpected flavors.