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PostHeaderIcon The Future of Your Browser

A few years back I heard of some people that where attempting to turn your web browser into a second operating system on your computer. Basically, all of your programs would be opened through your browser. Your files could be easily stored and line and retrieved from anywhere. Additionally, it was the perfect collaborative environment.

Google Docs is probably the best implementation of an online office suite I’ve seen (please don’t shoot me if you have your own favorite.) But there are several others out there. But I ran across something last night that gets me excited on one hand and really scared on the other.

You see, computers have come a long way over the last 3 decades. What was once the domain of high-end, specially designed PC can now be done on any PC and inside of a browser window to boot. One of the reasons for this rapid increase in computing power has nothing to do with business, and everything to do with entertainment.

Computer games are the number one force pushing for faster and more powerful computers. So, it would make sense that it would be only a short while till computer games followed the office into the browser window.

Ok, ok, you got me. Games have been available in browsers for a long time. Popcap and other casual games have long been available via the web. But when was the last time you saw a First Person Shooter aimed at the hardcore gamer in your web browser?

Id Software is bringing back one of its flagship franchises. Quake 3 was originally released at the turn of the century. It is one of the most popular “Arena Shooters” of all time. It is now available in your browers. Any browser. On any computer. For free.

This new service is called Quake Live and can be accessed at just be ready for a bit of a wait.

So why does this scare me? I tried to give it a test run last night. It was prime time, and there was a wait to get onto there servers. There was around 2500 people in from on me. I ended up just going to bed and thought I’d give it a try later.

Turns out, I left my browser window open. When I came back to the computer at 10 a.m. this morning, the browser window had timed out and I hit “Reload” thinking I’d download the files and try it later. I couldn’t believe it: There were now 35,000 people in front of me. During the work day. Either a lot of people took the day off, or they found a new office time waster.

Yet another site for the office IT guy/gal to block from the corporate network.

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