Web-based e-book from the Google Chrome team [is] fascinating technically. In lesser browsers, each “page” turn is a full reload of the web page. Slow. In modern desktop browsers, though, the page turns happen via AJAX, but the URL in the location field changes too. In Firefox 3, you get AJAXy-looking URLs like “http://www.20thingsilearned.com/#/foreword/3” — a nicer experience, but still nothing I haven’t seen before. But in leading browsers like Safari, Google Chrome, and Firefox 4, you get AJAX page-turning and nice clean URLs like “http://www.20thingsilearned.com/foreword/3”. I did not know that was possible.
Me either. Hashtag location storage always seemed finicky at best, and horrible for cross linking and SEO. This is a fantastic solution. I know it’s been said that HTML5 is not revolutionary, but little fixes like this are going to make a huge difference in the quality of web apps in the years to come.