Google Chrome 11 debuts web navigation API

From the ‘Experimental API‘ files:

Google Chrome 11 is now in Beta and with it is coming two new interesting experimental APIs.

The Web Navigation and Proxy Extension APIs are both for extension developers and could help to enable a new generation of capabilities for extension developers on Chrome.

“The Web Navigation Extension API
allows extension developers to observe browser navigation events,” Google Software Engineers These
events fire both for top-level navigation and in-page navigation.”

That’s a neat feature that goes beyond the basic capabilities that an HTTP header might provide to an extension developer. Personally I can see this being used for some kind of guided navigation (customer service) type of technology.

Google sees use for the Web Navigation API as a way to get statistical or benchmarking data.

Going a level deeper the API adds some new listeners for devs to take advantage of including:

  • onBeforeNavigate which kicks in when a navigation is about to occur
  • onBeforeRetarget, which activates when a new window, or a new tab in an existing window, is about to be created to host a navigation.

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