Some really goods news reached us today, from François Beaufort, a developer who spotted an intriguing addition to the source code of the Chromium open source browser.

A Notification Center has been added in the latest version of the Chromium build for Windows, a feature that opens the path to the integration of Google Now in Chrome and Chrome OS.

According to Beaufort, the new notification feature can be activated using a special flag in the settings. The design and functionality are pretty basic for the moment, but Chromium is often used as a testing ground for features that are then added to the more polished Chrome. A screenshot provided by the French developer shows how notifications might look like, alongside the code that lets developers create the notification in a regular Chrome extension.

chromium notification center

Why is this significant? First, because we could all benefit from smarter notification systems, and second, because the feature might represent a precursor to a full blown integration of Google Now into Chrome and Chrome OS.

A truly intelligent virtual assistant that provides information based on context and your behavior, Google Now is currently available on devices running Android 4.1 or higher. The feature is one of the most exciting developments in mobile computing, and we’d love to see it come to PCs running on all platforms.

It isn’t the first time Google Now is mentioned in connection with Chromium. In fact, some of the require code is already in Chrome, so it’s only a matter of time until we get to play with the feature.

Google I/O is scheduled for May, and I really hope for some exciting news on the Chrome front at the event.

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