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June 28, 2010

Gmail to Use More HTML5 Features

Computer World reports that many of the upcoming Gmail features will use HTML5. Adam de Boor, a Gmail engineer, said that Google's goal is to make Gmail load in less than a second.

"If the browser supports CSS3, Gmail will render the pages using these specifications, rather than its traditional approach of using the Document Object Model (DOM). The company has found that using CSS3 can speed the rendering time by 12 percent. (...) Gmail will also make use of HTML5's database standards. Now, the e-mail service uses Google Gears to store mail for offline reading, but over time that will migrate to the HTML5 standards."

Another feature that will be added to Gmail allows users to drag attachments to the desktop. This feature is not part of HTML5, but Google says that it will encourage other browsers to use it. Right now, you can drag and drop files from the desktop to Gmail, but only if you use Firefox 3.6 or Chrome.

Adam de Boor revealed how many lines of code are in Gmail: 443,000 lines of JavaScript code written by hand.

Gmail has added many features that used to be available only in desktop mail clients: fetching email from other accounts, threading, powerful spam filters, reading messages offline. Now it's time to better integrate Gmail with the browser or the operating system and to add notifications, a simplified way to handle attachments and a better performance.

{ spotted by George }


  1. I suppose under 1 second would be cached page and mailbox (stored in web db)?

  2. also, a small but useful feature - ability to select from a rich set of fonts (e.g. calibri) while composing mails.

  3. Love to see Gmail become better and better.
    It's my choice for mail client!

  4. Sort out that slow, clunky contacts manager too! ;)

  5. And please put in the feature to get some stats

  6. I hope they implement JavaScript Desktop Notifications coming with HTML5 in Gmail soon.

  7. Bad(misleading) use of stats on that article : "can speed the rendering time by 12 percent"
    Under specific circumstances it's an improvement, but it would be nice to have a range or average or even an estimate would be better: how much can use of CSS slow the rendering time by? :-(

    An educated guess would be nicer - something along the lines of "We expect our average user will experience a speed boost of about 5%"

  8. Yeah right, everytime they add more html5 it takes longer to load, and the it becomes harder to read. Those geek kids at google need to understand everybody is not 20 years old with perfect vision! And they should stop adding html5 fake buttons instead of REAL url links (so we can right click and open in a new window)
    But most of all, make fonts scableable!

  9. i know that gmail more better and better in update their version but its more slow too, so i use old version ^_^

  10. yes, iam using it for add images, good


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