I’ve seen the future, brother: it is dynamic additions to the status bar that don’t block the main process.
You’re looking at a mind-bogglingly alpha Jetpack prototype running out of process. Yesterday was a black triangle moment for me, as I finally saw the culmination of 2.5 months of work to make the words “Gmail it” appear in the status bar.
In this implementation, when a Jetpack tries to do something that doesn’t really make sense in its own process (say, adding an element to the status bar), it proxies this operation to the chrome process and continues on its way. Theoretically this allows the main chrome to focus on important things like being responsive or not freezing, so the main work of running Jetpack scripts can be delegated to another process.
There’s lots and lots more work from here (for example, clicking “Gmail it” does nothing for various reasons I need to explore), but this inauspicious screenshot demonstrates that the out of process future is alive and kicking!