third generation web is the debatable web 3.0, otherwise known as cloud computing a.k.a housewives computing.. other words, you do all your word processing, stylesheeting, image editing online with web applications via your web browser.
browser claiming its the only third generation one is pretty vague.. especially that we're in the very early stages of cloud computing.. and a shell browser will not be able to do anything that the original ie can't, not to mention that that version can only be ie 5.0.. which is not even capable of supporting web 2.0.
more about cloud computing there: http://www.kurzweilai.net/meme/frame.html?main=/articles/art0689.html
lunascape.tv is still down here.. no idea why but i researched the program and found its original japanese site, where i found an alpha version that looked very promising: http://www.lunascape.jp/lunascape5alpha/
at a first glance; it sounds pretty similar to sleipnir .. an ie shell with limited support for gecko, but that alpha was much more than that.
sleipnir supported gecko was the rather old 1.7, lunascape supports 1.9 with that tracemonkey js engine.. but wait, there's more.. it also supports the webkit engine.. now that's impressive. unfortunately the 5.0 alpha is a japanese-only program and there was no mention on the site of a forthcoming english version, but i guess once it makes it out of the beta stage; more languages will be supported.
if you do the extraction routine instead of the normal setup.. the program will give you all sorts of problems..it doesn't write anything substantial to the registry but its numerous folders structure is messy and you'll have a hard time setting the folders right so an install will save you time and sanity.
the download only comes with the main program..without the gecko or webkit engines, select custom install...and you have the option to install either the gecko or webkit or both and a blogger toolbar which i didn't bother with..and a so called 'speedlaunch' which i assumed to be something like k-meleon's loader that preloads some libraries but that wasn't the case since nothing was set to run in startup.. i later tried disabling that speedlaunch in options to check for any differences but i couldn't find it.
there's also a bundle of an office application which you have the option to download seperately.
after that, it proceeds installing/extracting the files and when its done..it starts downloading the gecko and webkit engines respectively.
when you fire it for the first time.. it gives you the regular make me default prompt, asks you where to save your profile data with 3 options: application data, the browser's root or a custom folder..then attempts to import your bookmarks/favourites and finally asks you what engine you want to be default. all those options can be later set in preferences.
the startup from cold is quite acceptable with whatever engine you choose to be default it's more or less the same(less than 3 seconds).. with the trident engine a couple of nanoseconds faster. warm startup is almost instant.
page load in the trident engine is naturally identical to ie.. the gecko is quite fast and when you choose webkit, the pages blur on the most hefty pages.. it saw most of the essential plugins.. some from the registry, others from firefox it seems.
when you type in the addressbar for the first time, it prompts you to open in a new tab or in the same page..
unlike sleipnir, the gecko engine seems fully supported without any limitations and so was webkit..that was pretty impressive. it didn't remember which engine was used with what site which is a nifty feature in sleipnir. lunascape will just use the default engine everytime it starts but just like sleipnir, this can be changed easily by clicking on the engine's icon in the status bar.. but instead of switching the engines right away it will pop a menu with the engines.
their's an abundance of options without an overkill, you can even select to make it default handler for some protocols and file types while leaving the others untouched and the user-agent drop menu has almost every known browser/os/mobilephone under the sun.
some of its configurations can also be modified with a text editor.
the browser is way ahead of sleipnir when it comes to stability and responsivness.. and for an alpha, this is an excellent browser.
among the list of features is a built-in rss feedreader and a download manager which i wasn't able to execute/trigger.. perhaps because its still alpha.
when uninstalling it, it gives you the option to remove the profile folder or leave it.. even an option to make internet explorer the default browser when another browser is default.
so where's the catch? the interface is rubbish.. it's an api-overriding skin so there's no 'no-skin' option which is a complete let-down.
for testers and web designers.. this browser is a G-d send, you can test every page side-by-side with 3 engines simultaneously.
conclusion: an impressive browser completely fucked-up by its own interface.