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I think thats the issue with it and sometimes no matter how good it is, it just dont jell with people.
Personally I just dont like it, I've tried to love it but Opera never hit the sweet spot. The themes are dull, way to many options and lacking linux support. My mate has used Opera for years and once I introduced him to Firefox 2 he just seem to just like it better.
You can throw all the innovation and features into Opera but if people just dont like there's not much you can do. I even prefer Konqueror over Opera.
I think thats the issue with it and sometimes no matter how good it is, it just dont jell with people.
I know, this is because Opera used to have ads or to be paid, and people got angry at Opera. Their image of evil company has stuck and if there's a browser to hate, no matter how good it is, it's Opera. There's nothing Opera can do at this time. It's a brand recognition problem.
The themes are dull
The themes were dull. Now Opera has native OS integration and you can use skins submitted by users. You can have Opera look like Safari or IE for instance
way to many options
These options are hidden, and shouldn't annoy the average user. And they are essential for power user. Having them out of the box is better than having to go to a web site to download extensions that not always work across upgrades.
lacking linux support
What is missing exactly? I'm using Opera on Linux and it's worked great so far.
You can throw all the innovation and features into Opera but if people just dont like there's not much you can do.
Sadly, this is true.
To speak to OS integration, I use Opera precisely because if fits perfectly into my KDE desktop, right down to correctly inheriting transparent menus. I find the user interface to be perfect. The only down side is stability. It crashes more than all the other browsers I use. To rate them from most to least stable:
So while I continue to user Opera due to its perfect integration with KDE and superior features to Konqueror, I sometimes switch to Firefox when Opera crashes.
This article is very accurate.
I've installed opera...but I still use firefox. My reason, as sad as it is:
Opera does not have live bookmarks for rss feeds.
I don't know. Every else seems to like separate rss readers...but I just like live bookmarks. I plop them onto my bookmark toolbar and I can check the feeds without leaving the current tab or opening up anything new.
I think it's just how I've gotten used to it. But again, that's the point of the article...it's a better GUI because that's how I've always used it.
The way I do feeds is via the mail/feeds panel. To show the panel, I do a quick mouse gesture, and the same to hide it. It tells me if I have new mail or any of my feeds are updated. I like it better than the live bookmarks. I don't have to move my mouse to a specific spot and click. Just hold the mouse button down for a split second while doing a quick gesture.
Opera does not have live bookmarks for rss feeds.
Opera does have RSS feeds, it's in its mail client. Personally I think it makes a lot more sense to have news feeds in the email client than in the toolbar. It's much more organized and easier to read.
Opera does have RSS feeds, it's in its mail client.
The parent post did not say that Opera doesn't support RSS feeds.
He said Opera doesn't has Live Bookmarks for RSS feeds..
Personally I think it makes a lot more sense to have news feeds in the email client than in the toolbar. It's much more organized and easier to read.
Live bookmarks are a very simple implementation for RSS, but very convenient if all you need is a quick inspection of the latest headlines, without putting the current document out of focus. RSS are often use to syndicate web content, so why take them out of the browser? They are not e-mail, nor newsgroup postings.
In terms of personal preference, if better organization is a necessity, I'd rather use a standalone aggregator. Edited 2008-01-31 20:30 UTC
It does not matter whom implemented the feature first. It does not matter who was the innovator. All that matters is how that feature was presented.
By default, the Opera interface SUCKS. Yes, I know that it is customisable, and you can make it look similar to Firefox, Safari, or another browser. And, yes, I've done that. For a laptop, it's the best browser (on Windows) because its keyboard navigation is second to none. You can move focus on objects up, down, left, right with CTRL+ARROW KEYS.
The problem is that people do not want to invest the time to customise. They want it it look good from the start. They want it to make sense from the start.
Not to mention, people now want extensions, which are not available for Opera.
They need to hire a UI designer, and they must make sure that it blends in on all relevant platforms.
It should blend in on Vista, XP, KDE, OSX.
You do not see its ugliness when you browse the web with the Nitendo Wii.
Its rendering engine is one of the best, if not the best. It supports a lot of HTML5, for example. They are innovators, but they are not presenters.
I disagree. I believe there is an objective component. I think its actually quite an important question i.e. whether or not things like beauty or aeshetics are intrinsically so or at least have an intrinsic component which makes them beautiful.
There is a little book called "The abolition of man" by C.S. Lewis which you may find interesting.
By default, the Opera interface SUCKS.
Please tell what you like in Firefox and what you don't like in Opera, based on this comparison screenshot: http://i27.tinypic.com/en77n.png
its keyboard navigation is second to none
Ok, please take a look at these two links and tell us what you're missing, maybe Opera devs could add it to the next version.
The problem is that people do not want to invest the time to customise. They want it it look good from the start. They want it to make sense from the start.
Opera and Firefox (and other browsers) look pretty much the same from the start: http://i27.tinypic.com/en77n.png Or am I missing something? If the problem is the Opera logo in the title bar, then I tend to think the problem of Opera is not a technical problem, but rather a brand problem. People dislike Opera because it's Opera.
people now want extensions
Not people, geeks.
which are not available for Opera.
No need, these functionalities come already out of the box. Isn't it better? Who wants to chase for extensions that not always work across upgrades?
It should blend in on Vista, XP, KDE, OSX.
Now, this is interesting. Opera has native OS integration in Vista, XP, KDE and OS X. However, Firefox doesn't have native integration for KDE, although it has for Gnome because Opera uses Qt and Firefox uses Gtk.
They are innovators, but they are not presenters.
I really don't think the problem is a GUI issue. It's rather a branding issue. Who here dislikes the Opera application but likes the Opera Software company itself? I'm sure not many.
I can't really agree with Opera's interface sucking. One thing is it's appearance witch is subjective, but one is the working of it. Although Opera is slightly different from Firefox they are quite similar and both very simple.
A lot of criticism against Opera seems to nothing more than "Why isn't Opera like Firefox" represented in other argumetns. To that I say: why should Opera be like Firefox? It's it's own browser and Opera have the guts to be different. The fruit of it is innovation, but the price it that a lot of people don't like it that much.
One thing about Opera is that when people do like Opera they tend to *love* Opera. I would even go as far as compare us to the Apple-fans that just LOVE their OS. (Now many say that that Apple-thing is because of marketing... but considering how really flawed the Opera marketing really is that argument doesen't really count here.)
I have used Opera off and on since Version 5 or maybe even earlier. I loved the OS2 version of Opera at the time OS2 was still mainstream, I have always loved Opera and felt it was way ahead of it's time. The last few years though although I still use it and love it, I tend to use other browsers and use Opera for a backup for some sites. I am not sure why either because every time I do use it I like it. On OSX I use Safari first and Opera if a site has issues and on Windows Firefox then Opera.
I used to use Opera back in the days when Mozilla was the big bloaty browser and Phoenix wasn't around. It wasn't the greatest browser but it was certainly better than IE, although you had to use IE quite frequently for sites which only worked in IE - nobody even considered other browsers with IE being so dominant.
However after using so many plugins in Firefox, even though it probably isn't quite as fast as Opera I still prefer it. Hopefully Firefox 3 will turn Firefox into an even faster browser.
I've tried going back to Opera for the improved performance, but could never quite get used to some of the minor quirks which you just can't change.
I also hate all the built-in functionality of Opera and would rather have the extensions-based functionality of Firefox.
Why? There's gotta be some reason for that...
Isn't having built-in functionality more convenient?
I just don't want them in front of me
Which functionalities are in front of you? Most functionalities are hidden (ex: mail client, RSS reader, chat client, Usenet client, mouse gestures, etc...). The default interface is not particularly bloated to me: http://i27.tinypic.com/en77n.png
At this point, the only extension I really *need* with Firefox is AdBlock (go crazy without it).
Have you tried Opera's built-in ad blocker?
It eventually became adware (horrible for someone who only had 31.2kbps dialup while everyone else was on 56kbps or moving to DSL)
I'm puzzled. How much bandwidth will a 10KB banner ad take off your bandwidth when downloaded every 5 minutes? There were even text-based banners. It's really not a bandwidth issue, it's rather an annoyment issue. No one wants to see ads, me neither.
by the time they made it completely free, other good free alternatives had risen to overcome it.
By the time it was free, it was too late, people already hated Opera and got their revenge with Firefox which was free of charge and with no ads. Freeing Opera: Too little, too late.
If they'd given the damn thing away, they would have gained a lot more market share.
Granted, that's not exactly a sustainable business prospect in itself...
When you have a partnership with Google and have hundreds of millions of users, you do make money (see the Mozilla Corporation). Opera was maybe too greedy and didn't expect Firefox would arise and eat them alive. Opera should have been free from the beginning, it would have eaten IE6.
Ultimately, Firefox was one of the major nails in the Opera coffin...
So Opera's dead then... I suppose its burial plot is right next to *BSD's, right?
Another problem with Opera used to be the price. In the 1990s, you could choose between IE which was free and Netscape which was free for Universities (most users with internet at that time). Opera had a "free" version but that ran ads and most users did not want banner ads running in their application especially since it kept giving the impression that their (already slow) net was being clogged up downloading ads.
Apart from extensions, the other big thing that Mozilla Corp managed with Firefox is to tie up with Google and hide ads behind the search bar and thereby making a product that was ad driven but not overtly so.
Of course, now Opera is doing the same thing. But I don't know if it is too late and if browser features have already matured too much (therefore you get somewhat similar features in all browsers), giving people very little reason to actively switch.
The Opera 9.5b is actually pretty good. I like the native sync support linked to you myopera account. My BIGGEST complaint with Opera is something that's gone un-addressed. I can't use it for dev work or tunneling because the don't allow you to trust certs on the fly. In every other browser, you get a popup if the cert is funky, and you are given a chance to accept or reject....Opera...nah it flat out rejects the connection, anyone ever found a way around this?
huh? Do you mean that other browsers don't give you a modal dialog to deal with it? Because, for me at least, Opera pops up a window when it's funky, and I can just hit 'accept' - this might not work so well for tunnelers, tho.
Not for me, or at least last time I checked a 9.x version. For instance, I have some appliances that I manage. Because of their location in the environment, I have to tunnel through a jumpbox to access the gui. This of course changes the real address I am accessing from my local machine to say https://127.0.0.1:5555. Opera flat out tells me the cert is invalid, with no chance to accept the cert with the mismatching...Why? (shrug) you got me. Work's fine for literally every other browser on Windows and Linux I've used, only Opera bombs out.
The cert problem I've seen with Opera 9.5b but with the current production model (9.25), there's no issue. I just chalked it up to a bug in the beta.
i keep bumpinng into hotkeys that are moved, missing, or in other ways different from firefox.
i could probably remap them, but like i said, some are plain missing.
and with me now using linux for day to day computing i have firefox and konqueror at hand.
still, its still not roses without thorns. i at times find myself using firefox in windows, and there the default hotkey for going to a specific tab is ctrl+a number.in linux its alt+a number...
The user interface in Opera is just 'off' ... some people like it, but most just don't, including me. I've been hacking away at Opera for months, trying to get it to work the way I want it to, and it still doesn't behave quite right. For example, every time I open an HTML file on my hard drive, Opera opens up with 2 tabs.. one is the html file I opened, and the other is a page with an error message about can't open page. WHY!?!? This kind of sh*t makes me just want to pull my hair out. They concentrate too much on the crappy built-in email program, while most of the features in the browser remain about 90% implemented. (Case in point.. annoying bugs in the voice feature that have been around since v8 are still there.)
So, why do I use it? For one reason and one reason only. It has a stellar (though sometimes frustrating) text-to-speech engine built right in. (Only available on Windows.) I just like to kick back and have Stephen Hawking read web pages to me. If I could find a voice engine to use for the Firefox voice plugin that works as well as the one in Opera, I'd drop Opera like a bad habit and never look back.
BTW: Out of all the features that Opera introduced, one thing it didn't come out with first is Adblock. Version 9 has the content blocking, but I like in Firefox being able to download an extension that keeps the filter list updated.
For example, every time I open an HTML file on my hard drive, Opera opens up with 2 tabs.. one is the html file I opened, and the other is a page with an error message about can't open page. WHY!?!?
This has gotta be a bug, you could report it.
They concentrate too much on the crappy built-in email program
Ah, no, you can't say that. Opera's email client is probably the best around. It's the only email client that I know that uses a database and filters to handle messages. If you use filters to manage your mail, it's like 10x better than Outlook Express or Thunderbird.
Opera used to be so wonderful. I started using 2.1 on Windows 3.1 (in '97) or so and it just ran circles around everything. At the time it was said to be written in assembler, and it probably was given how well it ran.
In fact I used it faithfully until I discovered Konqueror and then the early incarnations of Firefox.
The computer press, as all of our media seems to, loves a dichotomy. It's easy to write about, easy to analyze, and to understand. The much vaunted rivalry between Netscape and Microsoft has garnered so much attention, there hasn't been room for a third browser.
What would make me move back to Opera when Firefox suits all of my needs? Nothing. I think Opera has missed its chance. Firefox is so good that only a major stumble in its development would make me consider anything else.
I think the Opera browser offers us another opportunity as with Be, as with Amiga, of something technically superior, which never reaches critical mass. I'm tempted to throw Linux into that mix as well. What all of these lacked was targeted marketing, presence, a clear vision of the future (this doesn't mean supported the latest standards, this is about ideas), aggressive goal-setting.
When the web now is such a backwards-ass non-standards compliant waste-land, html5 won't get you anywhere. What is Opera? How does it enable me to work differently?
Take a stand.
The vast majority of computer users don't want choice. A C compiler and a shell prompt is infinite choice, is it not? They want direction. They want to be shown new ways of working, they want to be lead by the hand. This is the market direction.
For years the engine was horrible, not in the sense that it didn't conform to the standards (it did and it does), but the fact that it wasn't interpreting the common quirks as well as Firefox. As a web-developer I need to see sites exactly the way the author intended, and I don't know how Firefox can almost all the time do that.
Also, the UI is not one of the best. I hate the fact that I have to jump through hoops to get the damn tab bar below the location bar, the menus are cluttered and the skins don't look very well on either platform.
As someone said above me ... it's the little things. Edited 2008-01-31 06:40 UTC
Why Opeta did not get bigger userbase while Firefox still gets new users all over the world? Because of the same reason why Linux is a lot more poppular then BSDs, HYPE and FUD.
Endless HYPE for Firefox which growed to almost saver of humanity to daily FUD spread here and there, most funny (jelous) thing is that if you ask most of these screamers spreading FUD about Opera (or any other product) if they tried it they will tell you NO with big smile on their face.
Yes, when you hear 100s of times to use Firefox instead of anything else, when you hear all the time that who doesn't use Firefox is a loser, you end up using it.
Funny... I hear all the time at OS News that windows sucks... i'm still using it :-)
I know why you're using it. It's either because:
- You really feel that the alternatives don't suit your needs
- You don't have time to learn a new system
- You aren't easily influentiable
Or all of the above
Several years behind I was a happy Firefox user, I do not looked at other browsers because I just was happy with Firefox, but some pages loaded slowly, random crash here and there, nothing really big generally, so I decided to try Opera, I was 8.x at that time, beginnings were strangem diffrent behaviour, diffrent tab switching algorithm, minimising tabs, panels, custom buttons, a lot of choices and you do not know what exacly you want to have there, but as time passed I got used to it, I liked the speed and forgot what crash means, now I have all panels customized, hidden menus and many other customization and I cannot live without all that stuff, SRSLY
When I must do something in Firefox or any other browser, even browse several simple pages I feel like handicaped, I do not have all that power and options that Opera gives me, not telling about taking ages for the page to load.
Also when I must setup opera from scratch, I do not need to search all over the Internet to get my extension that work with this exact version of Firefox, I just setup.exe Opera, turn on gestures (enabled by first gesture) and I am done. I am ready to work, do anything and with Opera Synchronization feature I have all my tabs and favorites here, wven without access to my box, that is what I call a browser, Opera, "The Power to Serve" :p Edited 2008-01-31 08:15 UTC
I must say I somehow agree with the feeling of being "handicaped" when I use another browser. But to me, the first and main reason I use opera is their "tab trash". Closed the wrong tab ? No problem, two clicks and it's back just as if nothing happened, with its history and stuff. Same behavior with windows in the beta. I may be a bit reckless, but... wow I use this every single day.
In Firefox it's CTRL+SHIFT+T.
In Opera, It's CTRL + Z
i dont like Opera's popup blocker nore do i like the live RSS feeds, . this is where Firefox3 is getting better than previous browsers, there LIve RSS feeds are better an the Browser itself is faster,
For me it's the opposite. I dislike Firefox's yellow bar that shows a blocked popup. I also dislike the live RSS. I prefer RSS in the email client.
Opera never gained traction because it cost money to not be ad-supported.
The boom of the internet saw the boom of popup and other adverts. People didn't want to use a browser that showed them ads in their toolbar, especially when there were alternatives that wouldn't ... and they didn't want to pay to remove those ads, when they could use another product that was free.
The advert alluded to "grandma" type users that don't care about extensions etc. Well those same people wouldn't have understood why they had to pay for a product that should be free (at least the others were, so why not Opera). This was around the time of those "free" dialup internet connections - the ones that still cost you per minute, but all of a sudden didn't cost a monthly charge. Again, why pay for something if you can have something else for free? It's how the majority think.
It's only recently Opera became "free" financially and I honestly believe *that* has helped it gain traction in the modern browser competition. It's just a shame Mozilla has developed such a community around Firefox, along with all the clever branding and marketing, to drive its adoption. Mozilla were lucky - users were getting frustrated with IE and its ability to get your machine infected, so they were *actively looking* for an alternative. Heck I even remember trying different IE shells, only eventually giving up and going Firefox full time. Once a couple of people got the free Firefox, they became advocates without realising it.
In my defense, I used Opera from about version 3.5 to now, but never exclusively. Even today, it is installed but hardly gets used, even though it feels faster and more efficient. Why? I'm not entirely sure, maybe like the millions of other web users out there, I am a creature of habit, and Firefox has just stuck with me.
I think you got influenced by hype.
- Get rid of the irc chat crap and add intergration for MSN, yahoo etc. Otherwise get rid of it... only nerds use irc. Or even understand what you have to type to connect to a room.
Normal people want to chat with their friends, not go into a virtual chat room where people they don't no never say anything and all you ever see on the screen is that someone joined and then left the room.
- Get rid of the opera bookmarks and intergrate del.icio.us into opera, but mask everything del.icio.us so that it lokks like opera's bookmarks.
- Rename widgits to something people can understand. Call it add-ons, extensions, or plugins. Yeah... every one reply and say plugins aren't extensions and extensions aren't widgits... you may be right, but to a normal user who doesn't worship computers and just wants to use the internet I bet that they couldn't care, and of the four, widgits would be the one least understood by people.
- Get rid of M2, most people now just use webmail, so intergrate webmail into the browser through the already existing email panel button. Then collect all the contacts from all web mail accounts and show them in the opera contacts panel
- At the moment the panel is seperated by a vertical line from the panel buttons, but it looks like it's connected to the active tab's web page. Change it so that the division is between the panel and the web page. Edited 2008-01-31 12:19 UTC
If you get rid of all that, Opera will not be Opera anymore, and I might use Seamonkey instead, LOL.
I don't understand why using Delicious instead of the synced bookmarks. Synced bookmarks are really nice IMO.
I don't know why removing the IRC client. I don't use it because I don't chat but it doesn't hurt to have it. Granted that integration with commercial chat services such as MSN, ICQ, AIM, Jabber and Gmail would be nice for some people.
Widgets aren't extensions. They really *are* widgets, they are for your desktop, not for your browser. See: http://widgets.opera.com/
You're asking to remove M2 but... Many people use Opera mainly for M2 (it's my case). M2 is an excellent email client. I use webmail when I'm not at home or at work but a webmail will never be as fast as a desktop email client. I really can't imagine Opera without M2, that would be terrible...
One of Opera's advantages is the wealth of features. If you remove these features, you get...Mosaic.
I appreciate your points, and maybe if Opera has it's own online bookmarks then maybe del.icio.us isn't required, but whether widgits are different from extensions, addons etc is just semantics.
Take a poll of your non-web designer, non-os geek friends:
Which three options below are things that extend a computer programmes functionality or adds new features?
I bet everyone would reply a, b, c
Pretty much everyone has heard of a, b or c in one form or another in at least one computer programme that they use. The words themselves give you an idea of what they do (with maybe plug-ins giving the list hint out of options a, b and c). D would give no one that doesn't use computers 24 / 7 an idea of what they do. Maybe, someone might associate it with the buttons and such that make up a GUI, but I'm certain if a national newspaper in the UK polled people as to the meaning of widgit, most people would say it's the thing you get in the bottom of a can of beer that produces a head when you pour it in a glass.
Why try and make problems for yourself? There are existing terms that would be clear for users. Have you ever tried a peice of software that has a sort of Wizard to help people accomplish tasks? Some programmers (who probably play RPGs) refuse to use common terms that are understood by most users thanks to wide spread use... instead of a wizard they create a Druid, a Shaman or a Priest to guide his programmes users through completeing some action (I even saw one once that called wizards a Mage... why make square wheels for your applications when existing round ones would make the ride much smoother for the user?). Opera calling extensions/add-ons/plug-ins widgits is no different and just as annoying. While I'm on the subject, rename the 'Wand'... Edited 2008-01-31 14:14 UTC
It's called "inovation"
If Opera named their widgets "Extensions", people would scream and say these aren't extensions because they don't extend the browser, they extend the desktop. The same way, Firefox's extensions are not widgets because they only extend Firefox itself. For instance you can't have a Firefox extension that shows an analog clock on your desktop, this is why it's called an extension, not a widget. Desktop vs. Browser. If Opera called its widgets "extensions", it wouldn't be accurate and people would once again complain. And Opera didn't invent widgets. They've been around for years. We shouldn't blame Opera for using an existing term and concept. People aren't forced to use widgets, they're there. Who wants to use them, can. Who doesn't shouldn't worry about it.
Regarding the Wand, Opera had to come up with a creative name, as it's a completely new feature. I think "Wand" is better than "Password autofiller and form autosubmitter" Edited 2008-01-31 14:25 UTC
I have been using Opera since before the Ad banner days. I began using it when they offered evaluation versions. I would reinstall it whenever the eval would time out. When the banner version came along, I went with that. I got over the ad banner in the menu or tool bar area, and when I could finally afford it, I bought a license. A year later they made it free.
There are so many features that Opera has that I can’t live without. But the two that keep me happy are the browsing shortcuts. Not having to click on the back button is awesome. Most times I use the two mouse buttons to browse forward and back and also use the left handed browsing (z=back, x=forward). Mouse gestures don’t do that much for me. I don’t like having to wave my mouse around get it to do stuff, but that is just my personal preference. I just find clicking left+right or right+left mouse buttons much easier to navigate.
Sessions are also my other Opera vice. The problem is most people only understand them from the aspect of which windows to have open to the sites currently active for a given session. They are actually much more powerful. They can store browsing history. Instead of having Opera open 35 tabs to 35 sites I view regularly, it opens to seven tabs with the 35 sites grouped according to my preferences. Those seven tabs have the browsing history already loaded. So on one of the tabs, after I have finished with the current page, I browse back and it loads the previous page I saved in that tab. They do need an easier way to set this up. Currently you have to build this manually by bringing up the sites you want in a tab in the order you want and then save the session. They need a session builder dialog where you could drag and drop bookmarks into a listbox and then be able to order them how you want. This is a feature where the page caching rears its ugly head. Page caching, I believe, is defaulted to spanning across sessions. If you leave it in the default setting, when you open Opera using my example above, you’ll see the cached version of the pages. I set Opera to trash the cache when I close it, so that each time I open Opera it is getting the most current version of each page.
I agree it can be tricky to get the UI to display like you want it sometimes. If it has been a while since I installed it somewhere, I have a problem remembering how to configure the bookmarks panel to display on the left how I like it. But the interface is completely configurable, from having nothing to as many bars, buttons, panels & menus as you want.
People who love (or hate) the browser and not the company, just don't get it. They go hand in hand.
If it wasn't for the company and all the internal fights for change, the thing would still cost you a license fee.
It was obvious to marketing early on, that the barriers to use had to go, one by one. Problem was that the barriers seemed to increase faster than the levels in tetris.
Luckily the PR department took over marketing, and now you are told what engineering wants you to hear.
The only reason I don't use Opera at work is because it causes ArcGIS to crash. ArcGIS is the main program I use at work, so without it, I get no work done!
Nothing of these things came from Opera... stop the myth.
If I'm not mistaken Opera had for a while economic problems and thus resorted to ads to keep themselves alive. Witch they did. Now (in contray to what everyone is saying) they are doing very well! Although it is not PC's but Mobiles and Consoles that is their main market. I'm not really sure why the bother developing their desktop browser... possibly because it's following is small, but oh so passionate about their favorite browser?
Yes, 1996 was the time I also discovered Opera, through a small newspaper article, hailing its speed and low resource consumption. I downloaded, I even registered, paid the equivalent of then 35 USD and used it for maybe three to four years as my default browser. It was just incredibly fast. And it fitted on a single 1.44'' diskette. That was just great, as it made "download once, install many" easy. Yes and it had just all you needed at that time. No kitchen sink, no mail, no news, no bittorrent. It was just a browser, pure and simple. A fast browser. With tabs (MDI, to be precise), long before mozilla reinvented them. With mouse gestures, also years before moz. Running like a breeze on a box with 4 MBytes of RAM and Windows 3.1.1
It was never particularly sexy, but it was incredibly functional and the only real option on the low-end boxes that I had access to. It demonstrated that a browser does not need to hammer the system!
However, later when I switched to Linux (around 1999/2000) I gradually moved away from Opera (which was available in alpha for Linux) to slowly maturing Mozilla.
For me, Opera lost most of its attractiveness, when they started sacrificing speed, small size and footprint to the demand for a kitchen sink solution. Integrated mail clients (heck, I cannot imagine anyone seriously uses it!), integrated mail, bittorrent, desktop widgets and lost of other gimmicks with very limited use.
In fact, the defining feature of Opera had been that it had been just a browser, at a time when everyone else forced their all-in-one solutions upon you. Some years later, everyone else was re-discovering the "just a browser" paradigm (pioneered by Galeon, who remembers?) while Opera was heading in the opposite direction.
To me the final momentum which removed opera from the list of options that I consider seriously, was that fact that less and less of those omnipresent web 2.0 sites play well with Opera. Sorry, but it seems the author is true in that sense: The time has passed, the moment has been missed (if it ever existed) Edited 2008-01-31 23:53 UTC
For me, Opera lost most of its attractiveness, when they started sacrificing speed, small size and footprint to the demand for a kitchen sink solution.
Errrh...Not really. See, Opera has a browser, an email client, an RSS reader, a Usenet reader, an IRC client, a BitTorrent client, everything in one application and weights 4.20MB. Now, Firefox only has a browser but weights...5.57MB. How does that sound to you?
Integrated mail clients (heck, I cannot imagine anyone seriously uses it!)
Me. And where I work also. I used to use MS Outlook and Thunderbird. Opera's M2 is just a lot better to handle large amounts of emails with its filters and its database concept rather than directories. Oh, and I have never have any data corruption problem with Opera M2 in 4 years. I really[i] suggest you give it a whirl, and try to use its features entirely. It's a little weird to use filters instead of directories in the beginning but afterward, you don't look back. It's kind of Gmail vs. Hotmail, really.
[i]integrated mail, bittorrent, desktop widgets and lost of other gimmicks with very limited use.
Integrated mail is neat, really. Not launching a second application when you click a mail link is much better. And a desktop mail client is faster than a webmail, obviously.
Some years later, everyone else was re-discovering the "just a browser" paradigm (pioneered by Galeon, who remembers?) while Opera was heading in the opposite direction.
Opera is different, and Opera users want it to stay different for sure
I just don't want Opera to be and to behave like Mozilla or Microsoft browsers, I don't feel at ease each time I have to use one of those. I feel I'm missing something when I have to use a browser-only application. Personally, I prefer Seamonkey to Firefox because it's more feature-rich, but I dislike the fact that Seamonkey hasn't integrated its subapplications into just one, among other problems. Opera will stay a niche browser most probably because not many people like the way it is. If people liked Internet suites, Seamonkey would be in front of Firefox, but in fact, people hardly ever use Seamonkey, they prefer Firefox, same for Opera.
To me the final momentum which removed opera from the list of options that I consider seriously, was that fact that less and less of those omnipresent web 2.0 sites play well with Opera.
This is true, and not just Web 2.0 sites. Any web site may work well, not that well, or not at all. This is because people are too lazy to test their sites in Opera. Some people don't even test their sites in Firefox (these notorious IE-only sites).
A fully customized opera interface and lightened configuration is all you need imo. It has no security exploits, string based ad filtering, full compliance with the acid 2 web standard test, rss, widgets, inbuilt mail/irc client, usb compatibility, remembers all your logon accounts and lots more extra features should you ever want to use them.
"A google of "opera vulnerability" gets about 400,000 results"
Opera got a lot in the it-news, because Opera getting a security issue was a big deal, in contradiction to IE and even Firefox(but less than IE) where it is common.
Now to call Opera(or any browser really) flawless is off course stupid, but Opera is by far if not the most, at least one of the most secure browsers out there.
Here is secunia's view of current new(not beta) browsers security situation. (Unpatched vulnerabilities), ranked from no known critical exploits to more critical exploits.
1. Opera 9.x (None): http://secunia.com/product/10615/
2. Firefox 2.x (Less critical): http://secunia.com/product/12434/
2. Safari 2.x (Less critical): http://secunia.com/product/5289/
3. Internet Explorer 7.x (Moderately critical): http://secunia.com/product/12366/
A google of "google ninja is an idiot" gets about 230,000 results.