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Google's Chromebook is a smart lightweight ultrabook for those invested in Google's ecosphere but had an anachronism - until now.

I wrote about Google's Chromebook earlier this year, and how it could be used by business and home users alike. For people who live in Google's cloud - Gmail, Google Drive, Google Apps and the like - it is an amazing lightweight device which requires no maintenance effort but yet provides a rich online experience.

However, one interesting anachronism about the Chromebook is that you could not actually develop apps for the Chromebook on a Chromebook itself. You could do many great and wonderful things - run your business, create a website, write a novel - but not make build new Chromebook apps.

Google has now set about to change this state of affairs, having released Google Chrome Dev Editor - presently in developer preview (ie beta) form only. This tool allows you create your own Chrome apps which can be deployed to Chromebooks, and in fact, to any Android device.

Let us pause momentarily to take the full ramification in; while previously Android and ChromeOS apps required a full, regular, computer. With ChromeDev you can build apps using simply a ChromeBook and deploy those very same apps to ChromeBooks and to Android phones and Android tablets.

Download Chrome Dev Editor from the Chrome Web store.

The app allows you to code through HTML, JavaScript and Dart - Google's JavaScript-like language, so there is no Java at this time, but you do get Git support.

Be sure to watch Google's 30 minute Google I/O video presentation on Chrome Dev Editor.

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David M Williams

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David has been computing since 1984 where he instantly gravitated to the family Commodore 64. He completed a Bachelor of Computer Science degree from 1990 to 1992, commencing full-time employment as a systems analyst at the end of that year. Within two years, he returned to his alma mater, the University of Newcastle, as a UNIX systems manager. This was a crucial time for UNIX at the University with the advent of the World-Wide-Web and the decline of VMS. David moved on to a brief stint in consulting, before returning to the University as IT Manager in 1998. In 2001, he joined an international software company as Asia-Pacific troubleshooter, specialising in AIX, HP/UX, Solaris and database systems. Settling down in Newcastle, David then found niche roles delivering hard-core tech to the recruitment industry and presently is the Chief Information Officer for a national resources company where he particularly specialises in mergers and acquisitions and enterprise applications.

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