Infrequently Noted

Alex Russell on browsers, standards, and the process of progress.

Alex Russell

Fugu, Blink, PWAs, Standards, & Web Performance

I'm Alex Russell, a software engineer at Google working on Chrome, Blink, and the broader web platform. My professional mission is to deliver on the web's promise of frictionless, safe, capable computing for everyone.

Alex Russell

We work closely with with partners to achieve experiences they didn't think possible on the web while ensuring reach beyond the the Silicon Valley bubble. If you work in the public sector and would like (free) performance consulting or analysis, please reach out via DM.

Since 2015 I have served as Chrome's first Web Standards Tech Lead, reforming the way feature development interacts with standards to ensure engineers succeed more often, with less drama, and deliver higher quality features — without reneging on our commitments to openness, honest inquiry, and collaboration.

From 2013-2019, I was elected to three two-year terms on the W3C Technical Architecture Group. Our band of reformers transformed the TAG into a service organisation, focused on improving the quality & consistency of web APIs. This collaborative approach earned the TAG a place within the Chromium process for launching features. I'm immensely grateful to Alice for continuing this crucial work.

Between 2006 and 2017, I served as a representative to TC39, lead efforts within Chrome to push Promises (including async/await), Classes, subclassable intrinsics, and other enhancements into JavaScript. This work was part of a major effort ("Parkour") which I co-led from 2011-2014. We designed new JS features, developed Web Components, and built DOM and CSS features to make the web a better, more expressive platform. This work informed my eventual co-authoring of the Extensible Web Manifesto.

Starting in 2013, I helped design underlying technology that enable Progressive Web Apps and led the team delivering features in that space. This included Push Notifications, PWA installability, Web Bluetooth, background sync, persistent storage, and many others.

Our follow-on work in Project Fugu is delivering too many capabilities to enumerate here. As a collaboration across the Chromium community, Fugu demonstrates how we can build a better, competitive platform through collaboration, openness, standards, and explicit focus on user and developer needs.

In 2015, Frances and I named Progressive Web Apps to describe the pattern our work over the previous few years had enabled.

From 2008 to 2011, I worked to build Google Chrome Frame to repair a painfully lagging browser ecosystem.

Prior to joining Google in 2008, I was Director of R&D at SitePen and built rich UIs for JotSpot and Informatica where I led the development of Dojo.

Emails rarely receive timely replies, tho you can chance it at: slightlyoff at for work, or slightlyoff at for personal matters. Consider a twitter DM if the request is time sensitive.

I'm proud husband to Frances Berriman. We live and work in San Francsico.