WebKit devs ponder how to remove Chrome-specific code

Shane McGlaun - Apr 5, 2013
WebKit devs ponder how to remove Chrome-specific code

Earlier this week we talked about Google’s decision to move Chrome away from WebKit and develop its own Blink browser rendering engine in an effort to speed things up. At the time Chrome developers argued that WebKit had become difficult to deal with and developers often accidentally broke things while working on a project. Google says that Blink will give developers more assurance that when they change something, it will only affect what they expect it to affect.

Basically, Google says that it’s too easy to accidentally break things with WebKit and its Blink rendering engine will isolate the developer from the inner workings of content. The developers over at WebKit apparently didn’t appreciate Google’s take on their platform and are currently discussing how they could remove Chrome-specific code from the project. Removal of code that wasn’t Chrome-specific is one of the other reasons Google cited for leaving WebKit.

According to Google, there are about 4.5 million lines of code in WebKit that are there for other browsers that Chrome doesn’t use and Google wants to eliminate that code. Apple’s Geoffrey Garen, stated on the WebKit development mailing list, a suggestion to remove Chrome-specific code in an effort to make development easier and more coherent.

Code that developers at WebKit plan to axe includes code that specifically designed to integrate with the Google V8 JavaScript engine, any code having to do with the Google Skia graphics library, and support for the Google-URL library. Code having to do with page rendering and layout tests specifically for Chrome are also expected to be removed. However, Google Chrome isn’t the only browser that uses some of this code. Reports indicate that BlackBerry also uses Skia and Samsung uses V8 so removal of that code could affect those devices as well.

[via The Register]

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