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Chrome 25 Beta Adds Voice Commands, Now Automatically Disable Some Extensions

Chrome 25 Beta brings along voice commands letting users dictate documents, or control game characters with browser using voice.

With the inclusion of the Web Speech API for developers, “users can start enjoying new, interactive experiences with web apps, for e.g. you can compose an email by speaking,” informs Google. Adding, “developers can integrate speech recognition into their web apps,” Google said.

In addition, to ensure faster experience, this beta will now automatically disable some extensions on Windows that may have been added by third party programs without proper acknowledgement from users. “A notification will appear with the option to re-enable the affected extensions.”

Check out the web speech demo here.

Here is what you will find in this release:

  • “Unprefixed support for Content Security Policy (CSP), that helps reduce the risk of cross-site scripting and other content injection attacks
  • Prefixed support for Shadow DOM, a key part of Web Components that enables DOM tree encapsulation. To get started, try the prefixed webkitCreateShadowRoot API available in today’s Beta release
  • JavaScript Web Speech API enables speech-to-text on the desktop web
  • Chromium’s IndexedDB implementation now supports concurrent transactions
  • Web Audio API now exposes an OfflineAudioContext constructor, and a few AudioContext method names have been updated to match the latest spec
  • ::cue pseudo-element lets you style WebVTT cues such as HTML5 video subtitles,” informs Google.

Update to Chrome Developer Tools include:

  • “console.clear() helps keep your console clean
  • top toolbar is now icon-free, though icons can be re-enabled in settings
  • Added timeline setting “Show CPU activity on the ruler.” console.log formatting accepts multiple styles.
  • docking toggle switches between most recent modes; “Dock to Right” is now the default alternative
  • Emulate the media type to view print stylesheets and @media blocks
  • CodeMirror editor, replacing the default DevTools editor in Sources Panel, was updated to v3,” google added.

In other news, Google updates Renderscript for Android 4.2, probably the major update in this release the improved performance of common image-processing operations with Renderscript.

“We made a few major improvements between ICS and Jelly Bean, which significantly reduced the overhead of short scripts as well as the cost of getting elements out of allocations. Going from Android 4.1 to Android 4.2, we added a number of performance improvements to the math library. Our hardware partners also made major contributions; ARM in particular provided numerous compiler improvements which greatly improved our ability to generate vector code,” Google explains.

To learn more about using Renderscript, see the Renderscript Computation developer’s guide.

Renderscript image-processing benchmarks run on different Android platform versions (Android 4.0, 4.1, and 4.2) in CPU only on a Galaxy Nexus device.

Renderscript image-processing benchmarks comparing operations run with GPU + CPU to those run in CPU only on the same Nexus 10 device.

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