A kernel panic is what an iOS does when it is about to shut down. Effectively it is the same as the blue screen of death on Windows, but it means that Apple can market itself as never suffering from one of those.
According to Gizmodo, the problem came when Apple issued an upgrade to the Intel HD 4000 integrated graphics on the Air portable notebook. Chrome really did not like the new update and caused a crash.
Chrome is very popular on the Air notebook as an alternative to Apple's Safari browser. Google explained that a graphics resource leak was leading to kernel panics on devices with Intel HD 4000 integrated graphics like Ivy Bridge Macs like the new MacBook Airs.
But it pointed out that it was not entirely its fault. In a statement the company added that it should not be possible for an application to trigger such behaviour from the operating system.
Clearly the OS was designed by superior programmers who think that a kernel panic is the best way for a graphics resource leak to be dealt with.
Google has filed a bug report with Apple to find out what's going on. Its hope is that Apple will come up with a fix. Meanwhile it suggests that users temporarily pull the plug on some of Chrome's GPU acceleration features.
Of course we can see Apple rushing to fix a flaw in its operating system to allow a rival browser to work.