Of web browsers and Wimbledon

chrome Life online used to be a lot different. The internet largely consisted of websites hosted by geocities and if you wanted to access these online horrors you fired up Netscape Navigator through your dial up AOL connection (keyword: rubbish) which you probably got for free via one of those AOL discs that for a time seemed to take up 90% of all postal mail, and all was, well, pretty pointless and crap.

Now, however, we have choice all over the place, and the internet is so common in everyday life that we take it for granted. I started off my internet browsing career with Netscape Navigator (ah, that little wheel), moved onto Internet Explorer, then to Opera, to Firefox, and finally to Chrome where I am currently residing until something better comes along.

I am telling you this because today Chrome was exceptionally useful. The router, that box of magic that connects everyone in the house to the internet, had had a failed update applied to it, which had turned it from a wonderful box of trickery into a box of black plastic which flashed error lights woefully. Normally you could just pop online and find some solution (a challenge in itself when the thing that is broken provides the internet connection – luckily in this case a backup router was available) but the router, being German, and pretty much only available in Germany, only really had help offered by internet users in German. As previously mentioned, my German is pretty poor, so far I can tell people to go faster (all that watching the world cup in German is starting to pay off) and find beer, but complex router instructions are beyond me. Which is where Chrome comes along. Fire up a page in a foreign language and Chrome will helpfully ask you if you want it translated, which it does quickly and efficiently, thus saving the day. And so the router was saved, hurrah. Chrome is also pretty darn quick and secure compared to other browsers, if you haven’t given it a go yet, you can grab it from Google here.

So that was web browsing. We watched two critical world cup matches yesterday, at least critical if you are either English or German. The curse of my support seemed to have been lifted, as both England and Germany won, the problem with this is that now England and Germany will face each other in the next round. Great stuff, if you happen to be supporting England whilst living in Germany. It will most certainly make for an interesting Sunday afternoon. Plucky Australia put up a brave fight but went out (they did get their first female Prime Minister though) while the USA also went through. Tremendous stuff all round.

In Tennis news, Wimbledon has hosted it’s (and in fact, probably tennis’s) longest ever game, with a fifth set between John Isner and Nicolas Mahut going all the way up to 59 games each before being paused for bad light, after two days worth of play. A third day will hopefully conclude the match today, but who can tell. Maybe it will never end. The new record for number of aces in any match is certainly going to be tough to beat in future though…

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