Google put an extensions system for its Chrome browser into a beta channel and opened up a gallery featuring more than 300 extensions.
An extension system has been one of the most requested features for Chrome, said Google Chrome Software Engineers Erik Kay and Aaron Boodman in the Google Chromium blog.
"It's a tribute to Mozilla and the Firefox project that nowadays, users just expect all browsers to have built-in extensibility," they said. Google team members sought to build an extensions system that is easy to use, stable, more secure, and that would not slow down Chrome, the engineers said.
Extensions, they said, "are as easy to create as web pages." The Google Chrome multiprocess architecture, meanwhile, has been used to keep extensions stable and said, Kay and Boodman said.
The beta system debuts for Windows and Linux, with extensions for the Mac still a work in progress.
The gallery, also in a beta release stage, is accessible at this web page. Some of the most popular extensions include a Google Mail Checker, to display the number of unread messages in the Google Mail inbox, an RSS Subscription Extension and Zemanta, to expand a blogging dashboard.