Google has decided to move away from an Adobe standard in an effort to keep a goal alive. The change was done for a variety of reasons, but keeps Google moving forward with Chrome in one key direction. For utility across devices, it makes sense. Unfortunately, it also brings further disparity to web design, something Adobe was trying to solve.
CSS Regions, the standard Adobe has been developing for years, has essentially been dismissed by Google. Though impressive, Google feels it slows web pages down, harkening back to a missive given a few weeks ago. Google’s aim for Chrome is speed, and CSS Regions doesn’t help. Web pages look the part, but if they won’t act the part, Google isn’t interested.
Adobe had been working with Google’s Blink engine to to reinstate Flash as a web standard. Though they made headway with both Blink and Apple’s WebKit, CSS Regions just didn’t cut it. Google’s Eric Seidel, who is a programmer on Blink, had the following to offer:
I believe Blink’s focus this year must be on mobile and specifically mobile performance…I have come to understand that Regions both does not play well with existing performance optimizations [and] impedes ongoing simplification and optimization work to our core rendering code. Regions addresses some very real deficiencies of the Web platform. But I believe Blink (hopefully with Adobe’s help) will need to find other simpler/smaller ways to address these deficiencies.
With mobile increasingly becoming the method of choice for browsing the web, Google is wise to keep their focus there. Though CSS Regions is pretty, it isn’t nimble or fast enough for Blink. Hopefully, the two can come to a new understanding about standards, and users get something both beautiful and fast.