I’ve written a few times here about some of Google’s projects aimed at speeding up the Web, including the company’s proposed new SPDY protocol for communication between Web servers and browsers. Today, the Technology Review has an article describing the first commercial software product that incorporates the SPDY protocol.
Website optimization company Strangeloop has built SPDY into its flagship product Site Optimizer, software that sits in between a website and its users, and adjusts the site’s code to make pages load more quickly.
The SiteOptimizer product runs on the Web server, and makes “on the fly” optimizations to the HTML returned to the browser. It now includes using the SPDY protocol as an option. At present, Google’s Chrome browser is the only one that supports SPDY; but it seems very likely that Google’s browser for its Android mobile OS will support SPDY soon, since the speed-up may be more significant for mobile devices, and Android has a large chunk of the mobile OS market. Google also has a family of PageSpeed tools for optimizing Web sites, including an on the fly optimizer, first introduced in late 2010.
Introducing a new communications protocol to an environment as large and diverse as the Web is not something that will happen quickly. Still, anything that speeds up Web usage will be welcomed by users (especially if the current fashion for mobile devices continues), and is very much in Google’s interest.