You may or may not remember a few years back, not so much at it's birth, but rather as the Internet hit 
puberty, the evolution of the modern web browser.  

After a few years of work as part of their university studies, a group of students created Mosaic, a rudimentary but functional program to help computer users look at the thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of web pages out on the world wide web.

One of these students, Marc Andreessen, decided to go out on this own and build a business around the technology he helped create... Netscape was born, and within 5 years was purchased by AOL for $4 Billion dollars.  

Of course, to use the Netscape Navigator, it had to be purchased by consumers, and as the only web browser solution on the market, it generated considerable revenue.

Unfortunately for Netscape, Microsoft felt that a 'browser' was key component to it's Windows Operating 
System, so much so that they decided to include it for free in Windows 95 and all versions since.  Netscape, and governments around the world, charged that Microsoft was using its overwhelming strength in one market (Windows was the #1 Operating System), to help it take over a market in which it was barely alive (the web browser market).

The fight and charges were eventually settled, but it was too late for Netscape.  Because it was free, and already included on every new computer, Internet Explorer (Microsoft's web browser) rapidly grew to become world's dominant, most used web browser for over 12 years.

Finally this last week, according to, Internet Explorer lost its 1st place ranking.  The challenger and new web browser champion is Google's Chrome browser.

This upset is significant because it means that, despite already having Microsoft's Internet Explorer for free on their Windows computer, users have decided they would rather take the time to download, install, and learn how to use Chrome, than continue to use IE.

So whats different this time?  Why are people willing to change browsers now, and they weren't before?  Is Chrome THAT much better?  Is Internet Explorer THAT much worse?  It looks like it just comes down to cost.  Netscape's business model had to charge for Navigator, where as Google does not charge for Chrome.  Users moved to the free Internet Explorer to save on cost, but it appears when cost is removed from the equation, they are willing to move for functionality.

I have been a happy user of Google Chrome for at least a couple of years now, and do appreaciate its speed and simplistic user interface.

If you are interested in downloading Chrome, click here.