Solving a Minor Problem with Epic Nerdery

As regular visitors know, my wife and I recently moved into a new house. The new layout allows us to have an actual office big enough for both our computers, located on the second floor. This is great because it confines the mess, noise, and heat from those computers to a central location and keeps the living more clean and open.

The problem is that this leaves the MacBook as the only computer on the main floor of the house. Michelle and I find ourselves passing the computer back and forth rather regularly, which currently means logging in and out of websites like Facebook and Gmail quite frequently. Not a major problem, but an irritating one. This is a problem that should have a solution. Our browser of choice is Google Chrome and according to the documentation, Chrome has a profile switching feature in the newer channels. Easy right?

For those who are unaware, Chrome has four “channels” – Stable, Beta, Dev, and Canary, each in a different level of development. The first three are updated on a regular schedules and are currently versions 12, 13, and 14. Canary is cutting edge, getting nearly daily updates as new features are being tested. Installing any of the first three will replace the prior installation. Canary, because it is good for testing but prone to random failures, is allowed to be installed alongside the others.

This weekend I tested each version, starting with Stable and going down to Canary. Not a single one of them has a working version of the profile switching. There are pieces in place, but nothing is fully operation. So that option is out.

But the solution presented itself during this process, when I learned that Canary can be installed as well as a more stable release. So we now have two versions of Chrome installed: Stable and Canary. This lets Michelle stay logged in all the time in Stable, which runs well without major bugs. I get the more cutting edge Canary, but I’m better equipped to handled its quirks anyway

This is obviously a long and elaborate solution to what is a minor inconvenience. Most people would simply live with the problem; its not THAT bad. But I am not an average person. I’m a nerd, and this is what we do.

-That is all.


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