Behind the Browser in Chrome OS
Obviously the browser is a key element of Chrome OS, as this is an operating system that has an unprecedented relationship with online services. The majority of apps that can be used with this OS are web-based, accessed via the browser; however, there are exceptions.
Chrome OS is built on Linux, and once you start ignoring the Chrome browser and use your mouse to click elsewhere on the desktop, you will see evidence of this. For instance, a wealth of options can be accessed by clicking the Computer button in the lower-left corner which features three buttons; Applications, Documents and Places, as well as shortcuts to oft-used apps such as LibreOffice (this is particularly useful as Google Docs can be quite troublesome should you lose your Internet connection while edting a document).
Other options are available via the Computer button, much like the Windows "Start" menu. A Control Center displays all of the configuration options for the operating system such as sound, display, mouse and keyboard, etc., while there are also tools for checking your system status and options for connecting to the Internet or a local network.
What will come as a real surprise, however, is the presence of applications in Chrome OS. This operating system, long-trumpeted as a the first user-friendly cloud-computing platform, features a wealth of open source software options beyond the obligatory LibreOffice.
Common Linux apps such as Gedit, GIMP, and Picasa sit alongside sound and video tools, and even WINE is present. This last inclusion is surprising, as Chrome OS was supposedly designed to low-end systems. A Windows emulation environment is perhaps the last thing you might expect to find!