Linked by Kroc Camen on Fri 18th Sep 2009 18:51 UTC
Opera Software You all know that I don't particularly like Opera. I find the product to be lacking polish, over-complicated and without the marketing pizazz that has made Firefox a household name. That's just my personal opinion, and that opinion has garnered many complaints of unjustness. To that end, to present a fairer discussion I would like to put a simple question to the community: "What should Opera do?".
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as seen here
by poundsmack on Fri 18th Sep 2009 19:02 UTC
poundsmack
Member since:
2005-07-13

i posted a while ago with this, but it seems this would be a better place for it:

It is pretty well known that I love the Opera web browser. Not because I am a fan boy, but because it does what I want, when i want, and I don't have to use anything else to complete my tasks/goals. That being said Opera's exec's need to stop whining and do some damn marketing work.

Even if your browser was on a list of browsers readily available within Windows the VAST majority of people wouldn't pick it. why? because users don't know you. People flocked to Chrome for a few reason, but primarily it was Google’s brand name recognition and association with making good products. Opera, is not widely known of, and therefore unable to leverage an advantage like that. Fortunately there is a remedy that would double your market share in a week. ADVERTIZE!

If you took all the time and energy you put into crying to mommy into an advertising campaign you would be better poised to have a larger market share. If you really want to hit the masses try this approach.

Take out a 30+ second TV add (yes I know they are very expensive) and pick the regions that are home to the more internet connected customers. Show off the browser a bit, but do it in a form that makes it like a tease. Then do something on the lines of, “go to Opera.com and see what you’ve been missing.”

Here just have someone with those movie announcer type voices read this on the air, while going through a movie trailer style commercial (like LG did for it’s Scarlet line of TV’s).

:Script: “In the beginning the internet was slow, unorganized, and a frustrating (cut to a user in front of his screen being overly upset at his computer’s internet speed, emotionally says “Come on already!” as if his download is to slow. Perhaps have him so frustrated he is shaking his CRT monitor). People longed for something better, a new way to connect, a better way to connect. Something faster, smoother and safer than before. You wanted it, so we made it! Introducing Opera, an internet experience like never before. Seamlessly connect to all aspects of your digital life and say good bye to the past and hello to the future of the web. Opera, an internet experience like no other!”

“Visit Opera.com to download the free Opera web browser. Join the Opera revolution and take back control of the web!”
(then leave a tantalizing high rez circling 3D Opera style O in the center of the screen, with a bit of reflection under it like the OSX dock icons, and under that put the URL displaying as if the computer just typed it in one letter at a time, but not slowly. Then under it, appearing slightly later, put “Opera, it’s what you’ve been waiting for.” Then have the O stop spinning and zoom the through the center, as if you just went into warp speed, leaving people curios and impressed.)

Congratulations Opera, I have just solved your problem. It took me 3 minutes to come up with that, and literally no real creativity on my end. Hell offer me the head marketing position for your company and I will personally do it myself. Look forward to hearing from you.

Reply Score: 4

RE: as seen here
by Fergy on Fri 18th Sep 2009 19:16 UTC in reply to "as seen here"
Fergy Member since:
2006-04-10

Opera, is not widely known of, and therefore unable to leverage an advantage like that. Fortunately there is a remedy that would double your market share in a week. ADVERTIZE!

The advertising that Opera should do is not spending money on stupid tv commercials. Most of your possible users barely watch any tv. Firefox had a few commercials but most of the growth came from word of mouth.
Opera should advertise by word of mouth. Invite Firefox and Chrome users to give their opinion about what they miss or don't like in Opera. Keep the current Opera as classic and begin a new version of Opera like Phoenix was.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: as seen here
by poundsmack on Fri 18th Sep 2009 19:30 UTC in reply to "RE: as seen here"
poundsmack Member since:
2005-07-13

"The advertising that Opera should do is not spending money on stupid tv commercials. Most of your possible users barely watch any tv. Firefox had a few commercials but most of the growth came from word of mouth."

yes but your making the assumption that the possible users are likely tech people (or at least not your standard user). tech people already know about it. Opera needs to appeal to the stupid masses (or the corious), they need ot lure in the person watching tv with some free time and tantilize them into seeing what this thing is that they just saw. my example commercial is intended to require the average user to check out what they just saw. and in a world where your average Opera watcher now is into twitter, and people still watch a lot of tv, its a good game plan. Opera has failed ot lure in the tech comunity, it needs to go for the masses where it could have a fresh start. then the masses start using it little by little, a few people at a time, then word of mouth starts.

The average user is usualy frusterated with their computer and blame it being slow on the internet. as a person who did pc work for a longggggg time when a user tried to explain that their "computer" was slow they almost always said something like, "when i am checking my emails it takes a while" or "the internet is slow when i go to _________.com"

show them a person in frustration and hit them with a tempting offer to fix their issue and i bet you they will go for it. I do a lot of marketing and this works very very well.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: as seen here
by OSNevvs on Sun 20th Sep 2009 18:14 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: as seen here"
OSNevvs Member since:
2009-08-20

Here's what Opera needs to do: http://better-opera.dreamhosters.com/

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: as seen here
by ari-free on Fri 18th Sep 2009 22:05 UTC in reply to "RE: as seen here"
ari-free Member since:
2007-01-22

"Firefox had a few commercials but most of the growth came from word of mouth. "

what firefox did was get the community to develop lots of home grown commercials. That drive generated more publicity than the tv commercials

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: as seen here
by kaiwai on Sat 19th Sep 2009 04:49 UTC in reply to "RE: as seen here"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

The advertising that Opera should do is not spending money on stupid tv commercials. Most of your possible users barely watch any tv. Firefox had a few commercials but most of the growth came from word of mouth.

Opera should advertise by word of mouth. Invite Firefox and Chrome users to give their opinion about what they miss or don't like in Opera. Keep the current Opera as classic and begin a new version of Opera like Phoenix was.


And people like me would be more than happy to promote it via word of mouth if Opera wasn't such a buggy piece of crap. I've submitted bug reports relating to incompatibilities or reliability issues between Google services and Opera - I get no reply and they're still unfixed to this day. I've given up reporting bugs anymore because of Opera's arrogance when it comes to addressing the damn issues - and when faced with reality they scream and cry to the EU wanting to be protected from being beaten with a reality stick.

Then there is the UI, it is a bloody abortion along the lines of Firefox. I've got a Mac and I want the applications to behave like a Mac - there is NOTHING stopping Opera from using Qt and using the built in GUI constructor to create a different UI lay out and feel for each operating system they're targeting. The UI in Qt after all, if properly written, shouldn't be hard coded in the first place but instead separated between the presentation and processing - there is no reason why such a division can't occur to ensure than each operating system is catered for in its own unique way.

In all due respects Opera, your product sucks. It sucked 5 years ago and it sucks today. Instead of whining to the EU how about fixing your own short comings. Oh, and how about treating Mac OS X users like a first class citizen rather than an annoyance.

Edited 2009-09-19 04:58 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: as seen here
by Stratoukos on Sat 19th Sep 2009 13:10 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: as seen here"
Stratoukos Member since:
2009-02-11

I've submitted bug reports relating to incompatibilities or reliability issues between Google services and Opera - I get no reply and they're still unfixed to this day.


When you report a site problem to Opera they resolve it by contacting the site owner and advising how to fix their website. If Google builds their web apps targeting specific browsers instead of using web standards there is nothing Opera can do. If you are using incompatible sites regularly then obviously Opera isn't the right browser for you. That doesn't make it a buggy piece of crap though.

As for the UI this is a highly subjective area. I use Opera on a mac too with the Macintosh Native skin and the System color scheme and I find it pretty nice (I liked previous versions too). Once again if you don't like it don't use it, but that doesn't mean it's ugly. Of course you are right that it doesn't feel native but even Safari 4 uses some pseudo-marble elements and the fact that cocoa doesn't have a tab UI widget makes thing worse (I also find Safari really ugly but that is another thing).

Finally I agree with you that Opera shouldn't complain about IE + Windows. Maybe Microsoft is indeed leveraging a monopoly to promote IE, but everyone expects from a modern OS to have some applications bundled. If you start dictating which ones are allowed where do you draw the line?

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: as seen here
by kaiwai on Sun 20th Sep 2009 00:58 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: as seen here"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

When you report a site problem to Opera they resolve it by contacting the site owner and advising how to fix their website. If Google builds their web apps targeting specific browsers instead of using web standards there is nothing Opera can do. If you are using incompatible sites regularly then obviously Opera isn't the right browser for you. That doesn't make it a buggy piece of crap though.


It isn't just that one; uploading files to websites via upload facilities, java scripts that hang the whole browser but no such issue occurs on Firefox, Chrome, Safari or Internet Explorer. As for this: "apps targeting specific browsers" - it has nothing to do with that - Opera is not bug free and quite frankly if the same website can run on Chrome, Safari, Internet Explorer and Firefox then there i absolutely no reason why it can't work on Opera (yes, I have changed the useragent in Opera and it makes no difference).

At the end of the day the end user doesn't care whose fault it is - they just want it fixed; if they can't get the website owner to fix the problem then they either need to ask themselves whether there is a bug in their own product or whether they should just bend over and take it like a man - provide support for a non-standard feature.

Finally I agree with you that Opera shouldn't complain about IE + Windows. Maybe Microsoft is indeed leveraging a monopoly to promote IE, but everyone expects from a modern OS to have some applications bundled. If you start dictating which ones are allowed where do you draw the line?


True. If one took Opera's arguments to the logical extreme we would be back in the bad old days where one purchased an operating system then had to pay separately for a TCP/IP stack, back up application, web browser etc. A web browser is an expected part of an operating system just like a TCP/IP stack or malware protection (which I would place in the larger picture of system security).

Reply Score: 2

RE: as seen here
by righard on Fri 18th Sep 2009 20:09 UTC in reply to "as seen here"
righard Member since:
2007-12-26

...those movie announcer type voices...

I think that'll kill cross-compatibility with Europe though ;)

Edited 2009-09-18 20:09 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: as seen here
by Ender2070 on Mon 21st Sep 2009 06:34 UTC in reply to "as seen here"
Ender2070 Member since:
2009-07-24

i posted a while ago with this, but it seems this would be a better place for it:

It is pretty well known that I love the Opera web browser. Not because I am a fan boy, but because it does what I want, when i want, and I don't have to use anything else to complete my tasks/goals. That being said Opera's exec's need to stop whining and do some damn marketing work.

Even if your browser was on a list of browsers readily available within Windows the VAST majority of people wouldn't pick it. why? because users don't know you. People flocked to Chrome for a few reason, but primarily it was Google’s brand name recognition and association with making good products. Opera, is not widely known of, and therefore unable to leverage an advantage like that. Fortunately there is a remedy that would double your market share in a week. ADVERTIZE!

If you took all the time and energy you put into crying to mommy into an advertising campaign you would be better poised to have a larger market share. If you really want to hit the masses try this approach.

Take out a 30+ second TV add (yes I know they are very expensive) and pick the regions that are home to the more internet connected customers. Show off the browser a bit, but do it in a form that makes it like a tease. Then do something on the lines of, “go to Opera.com and see what you’ve been missing.”

Here just have someone with those movie announcer type voices read this on the air, while going through a movie trailer style commercial (like LG did for it’s Scarlet line of TV’s).

:Script: “In the beginning the internet was slow, unorganized, and a frustrating (cut to a user in front of his screen being overly upset at his computer’s internet speed, emotionally says “Come on already!” as if his download is to slow. Perhaps have him so frustrated he is shaking his CRT monitor). People longed for something better, a new way to connect, a better way to connect. Something faster, smoother and safer than before. You wanted it, so we made it! Introducing Opera, an internet experience like never before. Seamlessly connect to all aspects of your digital life and say good bye to the past and hello to the future of the web. Opera, an internet experience like no other!”

“Visit Opera.com to download the free Opera web browser. Join the Opera revolution and take back control of the web!”
(then leave a tantalizing high rez circling 3D Opera style O in the center of the screen, with a bit of reflection under it like the OSX dock icons, and under that put the URL displaying as if the computer just typed it in one letter at a time, but not slowly. Then under it, appearing slightly later, put “Opera, it’s what you’ve been waiting for.” Then have the O stop spinning and zoom the through the center, as if you just went into warp speed, leaving people curios and impressed.)

Congratulations Opera, I have just solved your problem. It took me 3 minutes to come up with that, and literally no real creativity on my end. Hell offer me the head marketing position for your company and I will personally do it myself. Look forward to hearing from you.


What Opera "should" do is just quit the desktop market and focus on handhelds so I don't have a brain aneurysm from them suggesting a browser ballot for GNU based OS's. As if people running open source want a proprietary app flashed in their face.

Any GNU\Linux OS that recommended a proprietary app would get a kick in the face from Richard Stallman.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: as seen here
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 17:28 UTC in reply to "RE: as seen here"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

What Opera "should" do is just quit the desktop market and focus on handhelds so I don't have a brain aneurysm from them suggesting a browser ballot for GNU based OS's. As if people running open source want a proprietary app flashed in their face.

What on earth are you talking about? It was Microsoft which submitted the browser ballot suggestion to the EC. Opera had nothing to do with it.

Reply Score: 1

I want Opera to succeed, but.....
by michelebot on Fri 18th Sep 2009 19:14 UTC
michelebot
Member since:
2009-07-01

I really would like Opera to succeed. Every time a new version comes out, I try it. The only thing is, every time I try it, within 3 minutes, I run into some website that doesn't work. First it was flash, then it was Gmail, then it's something else where everything is mixed up on the page. They should either do a better job of testing..........or hire me as a tester. I seem to find the bugs every time!

Reply Score: 2

sbenitezb Member since:
2005-07-22

Opera is acid3 compliant. If some f--ked site isn't working it's because web designers messed up.

@Kroc: I've been using Opera since 2 years now, and version 10 really shines. Lack of polish? You have to be kidding. It's fast and has really nice features implemented. Sure some plugins would be nice, but for people like me who wants a good browser, it's hard to beat. Plus, shift+arrows makes it really easy to navigate with the keyboard. I wish the other browsers had that function (vimperator doesn't cut it and konqueror's way is awkward).

Other features, like syncronization makes it even better. You can browse your favourite links from any computer. Integrated mail and RSS is not bad, even if I don't use them.

BTW, Opera's business is in the small devices, not the consumer desktop. That's where they rock, compared to the alternatives.

Edit: and what's with people thinking that USA market is and indicator of success? If anything at all, I despise *americans (well, the stereotype) as dumb consumers that follow whatever the masses do and buy what the media tells them to buy.

Edited 2009-09-18 23:00 UTC

Reply Score: 5

atriq Member since:
2007-10-18

Opera is acid3 compliant. If some f--ked site isn't working it's because web designers messed up.
While I agree in principle, if said site is your bank, email, utilities or the like, then what do you do?

I'm sure contacting the site administrators about it is a step in the right direction, but that's contingent on the notion that they'll care about their site working in a browser they more than likely don't officially support. Sure it's great Opera's acid 3 compliant, but how meaningful is that accomplishment if the program fails on things that matter to the user?

Edit: and what's with people thinking that USA market is and indicator of success? If anything at all, I despise *americans (well, the stereotype) as dumb consumers that follow whatever the masses do and buy what the media tells them to buy.
Social commentary aside, my guess is because only China beats the US in number of internet users. And the difference from the US to Japan's (3rd place) head-count isn't exactly subtle.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_number_of_Interne...

Reply Score: 2

haydenm Member since:
2006-10-29

Social commentary aside, my guess is because only China beats the US in number of internet users. And the difference from the US to Japan's (3rd place) head-count isn't exactly subtle.


I think it's all pretty relative. Going by the data on Wikipedia (in Wikipedia we trust?) USA holds 14% of the worlds connected users. So a success in America can still be considered failure if your target is global (market) domination.

Reply Score: 2

michelebot Member since:
2009-07-01

That's great that Opera is compliant and it's the websites fault, but Firefox works with more sites, compliant or not. Therefore, I tend to choose Firefox.

Reply Score: 2

wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

That's great that Opera is compliant and it's the websites fault, but Firefox works with more sites, compliant or not. Therefore, I tend to choose Firefox.

It isn't Firefox that works with the sites. It's the sites that are designed specifically to work in Firefox.

Opera actually needs to be MORE compatible than Firefox since it doesn't get a free compatibility ride.

Reply Score: 1

michelebot Member since:
2009-07-01

Just as an example, I installed Opera 10 on my 64 bit Jaunty Dell Inspiron laptop. When I go to Youtube and attempt to play a video, the audio plays, but there is no video window. At that point, I go back to Firefox.

Reply Score: 1

Phone Member since:
2009-09-19

Synaptic Package Manger -> search for opera -> Mark Suggested for Installation -> mark flashplugin-nonfree

Worked for me. I did get the flash to work with the firefox's flashplugin, but it didn't seem to work too well.

Reply Score: 1

google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

ACID3 is an edge case test, it is not a standard

Reply Score: 2

Aragorn992 Member since:
2007-05-27

"Opera is acid3 compliant. If some f--ked site isn't working it's because web designers messed up. "

That's one of the most stupid arguments for defending Opera's poor compatibility. Its idealistic and not at all founded in reality.

Supporting these standards is great. I applaud them really. But #1 priorty (by faaaaar) is supporting the web, as it is now, full of poor coding and if that happens to be compliant with standards like Acid3 then that's great.

Reply Score: 2

About opera
by FealDorf on Fri 18th Sep 2009 19:19 UTC
FealDorf
Member since:
2008-01-07

One thing I've noticed; is that people often first relent from even thinking of downloading it until they actually click it and say "It's just 6MB" -- how I understand it, is that when people look at the features they think it's slow and clunky out of feature-phobia. It might not be polished, but it's definitely not slow. Otherwise they think of it as one of those IE wrapper browsers -- this is a very important factor IMO.. They have to focus on an aspect of the browsing experience. For example, Chrome has "google feel" and firefox has the "open feel". Opera similarly needs its own feel that the daily user can get accustomed to.

Secondly, the much tauted "CSS compatibility" HAS to mean that it's strongly compatible with websites. However it has rendering issues in many of the top websites here and there, they have to really work hard to address that.

Reply Score: 4

RE: About opera
by sbenitezb on Fri 18th Sep 2009 23:08 UTC in reply to "About opera"
sbenitezb Member since:
2005-07-22

Opera similarly needs its own feel that the daily user can get accustomed to.


Holy tap-dancing Jesus. It HAS it's own feel. It has themes, it was the first browser to implement tabs, gestures, fast dial, etc. All others copied it. So how's that it doesn't have its own feel? What do you expect from a browser besides working just fine? Does it need to morph into 3D and make coffee?

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: About opera
by FealDorf on Sat 19th Sep 2009 09:53 UTC in reply to "RE: About opera"
FealDorf Member since:
2008-01-07

Yes it has its feel. I also mean the part where I say "daily user [rather, a normal user] can get accustomed to" -- gestures, manual dial configuration, voice control, unite server -- these are features that a techie user would use. Personally, I use it for the visual tabs, mouse chording and the shift-based navigation it has. So yes, I *don't* want it to morph into 3D because like I already said, people would think of it as either slow or an IE extension.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: About opera
by Dave_K on Sat 19th Sep 2009 11:41 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: About opera"
Dave_K Member since:
2005-11-16

Yes it has its feel. I also mean the part where I say "daily user [rather, a normal user] can get accustomed to" -- gestures, manual dial configuration, voice control, unite server -- these are features that a techie user would use.


Personally I don't see anything wrong with Opera filling a niche as a 'techie' browser. Most people are happy with Notepad for their text editing needs, but there's still a market for feature packed editors that would confuse many users.

I'm not sure what more Opera can do to simplify its UI, without hiding some of its best features so deeply that most users would never find them.

For example, I see people complain about the sidebar panel being too prominent in the UI, but people who don't use it are missing out on unique and powerful features provided by the Links and Windows panels. To me having a little more (easily hidden) 'clutter' in the UI is a tiny price to pay to keep Opera's best features easily discoverable.

Personally, I use it for the visual tabs, mouse chording and the shift-based navigation it has. So yes, I *don't* want it to morph into 3D because like I already said, people would think of it as either slow or an IE extension.


One person's killer feature in day to day use is another person's unnecessary bloat. Personally I find visual tabs pointless (I tend to have too many pages open), and with the Windows panel I don't bother using tabs at all. To me Opera's MDI window management is its no.1 feature, but other people don't notice that at all.

Hard to see how it can be made one-size-fits-all without dumbing it down to the same level as other browsers, and if that's done then what's unique about Opera?

Despite the nebulous criticism of its UI from some people, I think Opera's main problem is marketing. In my experience it isn't that people think that Opera's an IE shell, or that it's slow and bloated, it's that people just don't think about Opera at all.

It'll never appeal to everyone, but I think that it's a fantastic browser, and I'm sure there are plenty of other people who'd love it if they actually gave it a chance. How to get them to do so is Opera's challenge...

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: About opera
by FealDorf on Sat 19th Sep 2009 16:48 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: About opera"
FealDorf Member since:
2008-01-07

If it's a "niche" browser, it can't be expected to get a greater market share. The deal is not about it being a fantastic browser but about gaining more users. *I* am happy with opera with the way it is; and I'm NOT asking for more features. I'm saying it needs to have an alternative feel which general users can get accustomed to. Did I speak about the user interface? No. I'm talking about the user experience -- the other fluff like the animations in Safari, native the feel that Firefox gives, the simplistic look of Chrome.

Reply Score: 1

Nothing in particular
by Stratoukos on Fri 18th Sep 2009 19:27 UTC
Stratoukos
Member since:
2009-02-11

First of all I don't think that Opera actively works to gain marketshare. They make money from licensing their browser (Wii, DS), licensing their engine (Adobe), selling Opera Mobile and of course by search engines. More users of course would be a great thing but they are doing great even with a ~2% marketshare.

I find weird that you think that the browser lacks polish. I find that everything is designed with usability in mind. And I also find that it's quite pleasing to the eye in OS X, as was Opera 9.

What Opera needs to do is keep innovating as they have always done. I really think that Unite is going to be a gamechanger. I really want them to gain marketshare but not at the expense of their product.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Nothing in particular
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 17:31 UTC in reply to "Nothing in particular"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

First of all I don't think that Opera actively works to gain marketshare. They make money from licensing their browser (Wii, DS), licensing their engine (Adobe), selling Opera Mobile and of course by search engines.

Of course they are actively working to gain market share. Or rather, they are actively working to gain more users. Because of the search deal with Google they make more money the more users they have.

Reply Score: 1

Extensions, extensions, extensions ...
by Wondercool on Fri 18th Sep 2009 19:41 UTC
Wondercool
Member since:
2005-07-08

1) Extensions

For a *long* time I used Opera (from around 1997) until Phoenix (Firefox) was at a stage that it was usuable enough (2005ish).

The only reason for me to switch was the simple fact I could create my 'own' browser with components that I liked. As a matter of fact, the first extensions I added to FF were a sidebar and mouse gestures (Opera inventions), but then I discovered a lot of extremely handy extensions like Foxmarks, Adblock and NoScript.
Especially Adblock is essential and rather nasty on Opera (either some user script or use a proxy server).
And of course there is a LOT of functionality just not there, that is now available on Opera, like stumble upon, sqlite managers, ebay and facebook helpers, etc.

2) Fire the current management.
Clearly the current management has made a lot of bad decisions in the past and it seems time for a new team. Just a small batch of bad decisions:
- not making the browser free as in beer early enough.
- having a gigantic wishlist from users on the Opera forums but almost implementing nothing from that list.
- the wrong features: Opera is still ok to use but the company spend a lot of time developing functionality that can be found elsewhere on the net, often better. Like a mail client, torrent client and (totally useless) widgets.

To me it seems they should give up on the general market and try to find a niche in the mobile browser market, where they are still the best and they can actually ask money.

Not sure if making the browser open source would help now, it's too late I think and might result in Opera becoming a multi-headed dragon.

Reply Score: 2

boldingd Member since:
2009-02-19

Yes. They've implemented a lot of features that nobody wants (in their browser, as there are common, better stand-alone apps for them), while they have neglected to implement a lot of the features that people actually do want (like a bloody extension framework).

It's kinda remarkable that it's even really a question anymore. It's really remarkable that their management has yet to figure this out.

Reply Score: 3

Free
by emilsedgh on Fri 18th Sep 2009 19:50 UTC
emilsedgh
Member since:
2007-06-21

Opera 'had' the chance to grow with Firefox BUT they should've made the product free of charge a few years ago. Better, they could've made the browser free software and built a community around it.

I really love to see the more little browsers getting more market share. If firefox becomes defacto, then we (users) has been the losers again. The perfect web is the one with so many browsers.

Opera needs a community. Non-FOSS softwares have no real community. Free-it up Opera!

Reply Score: 2

RE: Free
by poundsmack on Fri 18th Sep 2009 19:58 UTC in reply to "Free"
poundsmack Member since:
2005-07-13

"Opera needs a community. Non-FOSS softwares have no real community. Free-it up Opera!"

tell that to Microsoft who has some huge communities around a lot of their products. Head over to TechNet and see what I mean. Opera has a decent community too. FOSS communities are a mixed bag in many cases, especially the ones surounding distrobutions of a product (weather that be Linux, databases, desktop environments, etc). the FOSS world has some of the most divided communities and often feels like its social politics of some of these comunities hurt it more than help it. On the reverse note, if it went for the suport of the communities we wouldn't be where we are now, and where we are now is pretty impressive.

so, umm... i had a point i was going ot get at, but it's gone now. something about how you don't need to be FOSS to have a strong community. ...oh wait! i remember what my point was, its what i just said! ;) Come check out the Opera community, its a pretty good group of users and coders, and the users opinions are really taken to heart in most cases. http://my.opera.com/community/members/

Reply Score: 9

RE[2]: Free
by emilsedgh on Fri 18th Sep 2009 20:14 UTC in reply to "RE: Free"
emilsedgh Member since:
2007-06-21

"tell that to Microsoft who has some huge communities around a lot of their products."

There is a huge difference here. Microsoft has a platform. Others build products around microsoft's products. They profit. Of course there is a community around.

Opera, on the other hand, is not having a platform. You dont build products around opera's product, so people have no profit in helping opera.

I think Opera community is there to fill this gap; but its creating a users community, not a developers community. A successfull project needs both.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Free
by poundsmack on Fri 18th Sep 2009 20:20 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Free"
poundsmack Member since:
2005-07-13

Opera has a platform too, just not as OS. here is an example of others building products around opera: http://www.opera.com/business/customers/

other things of interest:

http://www.opera.com/business/solutions/devices/
http://www.opera.com/business/solutions/

Dev comunity:
http://dev.opera.com/

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Free
by Ender2070 on Sun 20th Sep 2009 05:27 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Free"
Ender2070 Member since:
2009-07-24

Opera has a platform too, just not as OS. here is an example of others building products around opera: http://www.opera.com/business/customers/

other things of interest:

http://www.opera.com/business/solutions/devices/
http://www.opera.com/business/solutions/

Dev comunity:
http://dev.opera.com/


Yay, I can make widgets for Opera or I can customize opera with my own oem bullcrap. Zomg, so many options for developers.

+1 for your spelling on the thread btw

And when we mean development we mean the source code of the actual product. Everyone else provides source code for browsers except Microsoft. Even apple contributes webkit source code and they are a mostly proprietary company too.

There really is no financial incentive for desktop web browsers other than getting money from Google for their search bar. They should give desktop users the source and keep making money off their mobile offerings.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Free
by bnolsen on Fri 18th Sep 2009 20:09 UTC in reply to "Free"
bnolsen Member since:
2006-01-06

Could be Opera needs an OS.
They might be better off expanding opera itself to be an operating environment for some operating system or something. Well that would just end up being another android type clone...

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Free
by Kroc on Fri 18th Sep 2009 20:22 UTC in reply to "RE: Free"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

Considering mobile is their staple, they really should launch an Opera Mobile port for Android, or perhaps face increasing irrelevance.

iPhone has Webkit built in, no other browsers aloud.

With WebOS are you able to replace the browser, I don’t know? But obviously, the web engine is already there and it would be difficult to ship another engine and compete equally.

What’s the situation with Android? Don’t know much about this.

Either way, the could be cornered off by OSes shipping their own integrated engine with no room for one on top.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Free
by Kroc on Fri 18th Sep 2009 20:44 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Free"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

Allowed, not aloud. Sorry, long day today.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Free
by fredrik70 on Sat 19th Sep 2009 21:46 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Free"
fredrik70 Member since:
2009-09-19

Opera for android already exists, works quite well. UI inout bit shit, but better browsing experience imho. the normall, webkit browser is too slow for any more complicated site, so operas way of scaling down the pages before sending them to the phone client is the right way until phones are getting more powerful processors

Reply Score: 1

RE: Free
by nt_jerkface on Fri 18th Sep 2009 20:52 UTC in reply to "Free"
nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

Opera 'had' the chance to grow with Firefox BUT they should've made the product free of charge a few years ago. Better, they could've made the browser free software and built a community around it.


That is why Opera has the position it does, and it deserves it.

Most people here would be using Opera if they didn't insist on charging for so long. It was actually pressure from Firefox that made them end their "pay or get an extra ad while you surf" strategy.

Opera was advanced for its time but the price was a rip given that IE was free and got the job done. The web was built around IE6 then so you often ran into comptibility problems with Opera.

Asking people to pay $20 for a browser that would sometimes render pages incorrectly was too much. Banking and government websites forced you to use IE anyways.

If they had charged less or better yet partnered with google they could have built up their base a lot quicker, resulting in more websites being Opera compatible which in turn makes the browser more appealing.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Free
by Dave_K on Sat 19th Sep 2009 11:57 UTC in reply to "RE: Free"
Dave_K Member since:
2005-11-16

Opera was advanced for its time but the price was a rip given that IE was free and got the job done.


Considering how staggeringly, fantastically, amazingly, [insert adjectives here] advanced it was compared with extremely primitive browsers like IE and Netscape, I always thought that its price tag was one of the biggest bargains in computer software.

At the time many of Opera's features, like multi document browsing and ability to save sessions, were totally unique, and the speed was amazing on slow computers and dial up connections. Add Opera's superior stability and it must have saved hours of me time, as well as saving my sanity.

Back then I used to carry a portable copy of Opera around on a 1.44Mb floppy disk, so that I never had to suffer those painfully slow and crippled free browsers. Opera's advantage was so massive that I'd have happily paid 10x as much, after all I bought much more expensive software, like MS Office, without them providing a fraction of the satisfaction.

Of course it had to become free one browsers like Firefox came on the scene, borrowed their features from Opera, and started to catch it up. But back in its early days it was definitely no rip off.

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: Free
by nt_jerkface on Sat 19th Sep 2009 17:02 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Free"
nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

Considering how staggeringly, fantastically, amazingly, [insert adjectives here] advanced it was compared with extremely primitive browsers like IE and Netscape, I always thought that its price tag was one of the biggest bargains in computer software.


It was fast but it had a major downside which is that there were a lot of websites that it rendered incorrectly. Of course you can blame web developers or IE6 but it didn't change the fact that a lot of websites were incompatible with Opera. There were also a lot of goverment and bank sites that required IE.

If they charged less or not at all they could have built up a better install base like FF which in turn encouraged more websites to be FF compatible.

People didn't want to pay $20 for a browser that wasn't a complete replacement.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Free
by Dave_K on Sat 19th Sep 2009 17:24 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Free"
Dave_K Member since:
2005-11-16

It was fast but it had a major downside which is that there were a lot of websites that it rendered incorrectly. Of course you can blame web developers or IE6 but it didn't change the fact that a lot of websites were incompatible with Opera. There were also a lot of goverment and bank sites that required IE.


A bit of an exaggeration. I remember MSN, some online banks, and a handful of other sites not working in Opera, along with a small percentage of others that weren't rendered perfectly. The other 99.999% of sites were just fine in Opera.

I could browse for weeks without hitting a site that had to be loaded in IE. Even then, copying and pasting a link into a different browser wasn't much of a hassle, not compared with missing out on Opera's speed and amazing features the rest of the time.

Of course, with hindsight, Opera should have made it free, marketed it better, and pushed for all the market share they could get. Messing about with advertising banners was a big mistake that put off many users. But that doesn't mean that it wasn't a fantastic value product considering all its advantages over the alternatives.

What's $20 compared with hours of saved time and far more comfortable and enjoyable browsing? If it was a choice between IE6 and Firefox then I'd have paid money for Firefox too.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Free
by Ender2070 on Sun 20th Sep 2009 05:36 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Free"
Ender2070 Member since:
2009-07-24

Bad artists copy. Great artists steal.

MS Stole the GUI from Apple who stole it from Xerox.

The MDI style interface was also used by Windows 3.x, stolen by Opera.

Mosaic also put their address bar and buttons at the top of their browser. Stolen by Opera.

Mosaic also used pictures of arrows and a stop sign. Opera also stole them.

See the picture? Who gives a damn about feature stealing. That is what drives technology forward.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Free
by strcpy on Sun 20th Sep 2009 05:50 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Free"
strcpy Member since:
2009-05-20

Yep.

And GNU stole everything from UNIX.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Free
by Ender2070 on Mon 21st Sep 2009 06:30 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Free"
Ender2070 Member since:
2009-07-24

Yep.

And GNU stole everything from UNIX.


Exactly

Anything worth it gets copied and used. Notice nobody is copying that stupid server opera added - can't even remember its name (that's how useless it is).

Not everything they add is innovative either. Nobody really wants a half assed bit torrent client in their browser (which ignores your OS's default file handlers and tries to open the torrent file itself, something that must be turned off through a menu).

Opera's browser quality would suffer if they wanted to keep up with Transmission, uTorrent, Vuse(Azureus) and even KGET! If you people actually think it competes, I laugh at you and wonder how much longer you're waiting to download stuff. And, having to keep your browser open while downloading a torrent? bad news

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Free
by Dave_K on Sun 20th Sep 2009 09:43 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Free"
Dave_K Member since:
2005-11-16

The MDI style interface was also used by Windows 3.x, stolen by Opera.


Complying with an operating system's interface guidelines doesn't constitute stealing.

That MDI window management itself wasn't invented by Opera doesn't change the fact that it featured multi document browsing long before competitors like Netscape and IE.

For a user back then that was a real advantage for Opera. For anyone who wants more advanced and flexible window management than can be provided with a tabbed interface, it's still a big reason to use Opera today.

Mosaic also put their address bar and buttons at the top of their browser. Stolen by Opera.


Actually, in early versions of Opera the address bar was placed at the bottom the page. It ended up being moved to the top by default because all the other browsers followed Mosaic.

See the picture? Who gives a damn about feature stealing. That is what drives technology forward.


Who's complaining about feature stealing? Of course it drives technology forward.

But you need an innovative company to come up with the ideas in the first place, and while their software is the only one that implements those ideas, they do constitute a selling point.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Free
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 18:10 UTC in reply to "RE: Free"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

That is why Opera has the position it does, and it deserves it.

Most people here would be using Opera if they didn't insist on charging for so long. It was actually pressure from Firefox that made them end their "pay or get an extra ad while you surf" strategy.

This is pure nonsense.

Opera deserves 10% market share in Europe because they couldn't rely on deep pockets of huge corporations like Mozilla could, and had to make money to survive?

Opera was able to make the desktop browser free when they invented the search field and landed a deal with Google. It had nothing to do with Firefox, and everything about Opera finding a working business model for a free desktop browser.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Free
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 18:08 UTC in reply to "Free"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

Opera 'had' the chance to grow with Firefox BUT they should've made the product free of charge a few years ago.

It's easy to say "make it free". Not so easy to do it when you can't rely on the deep pockets of major corporations like Mozilla could. Opera actually had (and have) to make money to survive.

Opera needs a community. Non-FOSS softwares have no real community.

Tell that to Microsoft.

Reply Score: 1

Focus on the solid base
by h0lden on Fri 18th Sep 2009 20:15 UTC
h0lden
Member since:
2005-07-27

I don't give a shiFt about some extensions like turbo browsing or embedded www server.

Keep focus on BROWSER!
This is fine that Opera passes Acid 3 ... but why it renders page differently than Chrome, FF or (sorry) IE7,8???

I was doing some cross-browser project and IE6 was nightmare second to Opera. Why???

Reply Score: 1

RE: Focus on the solid base
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 18:12 UTC in reply to "Focus on the solid base"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

I don't give a shiFt about some extensions like turbo browsing or embedded www server.

Of course you don't care about Turbo, seeing as you are spoiled by a decent connection, unlike 95% of the rest of the world.

You don't see the value of a server because you lack vision.

Keep focus on BROWSER!

Turbo IS keeping focus on the browser.

This is fine that Opera passes Acid 3 ... but why it renders page differently than Chrome, FF or (sorry) IE7,8???

It doesn't. Opera is extremely compatible. Most compatibility problems are caused by browser sniffing.

I was doing some cross-browser project and IE6 was nightmare second to Opera. Why???

Opera is not a nightmare. It's standards compliant, and will work if your code is written to standards rather than to specific browsers.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Focus on the solid base
by strcpy on Mon 21st Sep 2009 18:17 UTC in reply to "RE: Focus on the solid base"
strcpy Member since:
2009-05-20

Opera is not a nightmare. It's standards compliant, and will work if your code is written to standards rather than to specific browsers.


I have to agree with this. Never I've seen a page that would not render in Opera but would render in Firefox, say.

Also: in my opinion the old serious compatibility-woes are not longer that relevant in 2009. But people continue to rant about what they've used to rant.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Focus on the solid base
by Kroc on Mon 21st Sep 2009 21:45 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Focus on the solid base"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

I have to disagree with this. I’m writing standards compliant code and Opera is without question the second most buggy browser I have to deal with next to IE. Both Firefox and Safari are excellent as regards layout consistency.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Focus on the solid base
by wumip on Wed 23rd Sep 2009 07:41 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Focus on the solid base"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

I have to disagree with this. I’m writing standards compliant code and Opera is without question the second most buggy browser I have to deal with next to IE. Both Firefox and Safari are excellent as regards layout consistency.

Then you must be somewhat incompetent. That, or you are designing for the other browsers first and relying on specific bugs in those browsers, and only later testing it in Opera.

The "Opera is so buggy" claim is just a myth.

Reply Score: 1

Nothing
by leos on Fri 18th Sep 2009 20:33 UTC
leos
Member since:
2005-09-21

I don't think they can do anything. Opera missed the personal browsing boat (not that they can't make good money without it).

It used to be that Opera was the fast browser, and I used it on some machines for that very reason. Clunky UI or not, it was very speedy. Now they've lost that crown to chrome, and other browsers (except IE of course) are close enough to make the difference insignificant.

So what's left? An email client? People use either Outlook or webmail (which opera has problems with). A torrent client? There's better ones out there. A widgets engine? Completely useless.

Other browsers are cross platform, and lots of them are open source or more extensible. I just don't see any advantages Opera has anymore.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Nothing
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 18:14 UTC in reply to "Nothing"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

I don't think they can do anything. Opera missed the personal browsing boat

Huh? Says who? Their desktop user base has grown by 65% in the last year. It's closing in on a market share of 10% in Europe. And so on.

Clunky UI or not, it was very speedy. Now they've lost that crown to chrome, and other browsers

Not at all. Not on real-world sites. SunSpider, the V8 benchmark and other artificial JS benchmarks DO NOT REPRESENT REAL SITES.

A widgets engine? Completely useless.

Yeah, because cross-platform applications are completely useless! Heh.

Other browsers are cross platform, and lots of them are open source or more extensible. I just don't see any advantages Opera has anymore.

Smaller, faster, more portable, etc.

Reply Score: 1

Mistake, redemption
by fretinator on Fri 18th Sep 2009 20:38 UTC
fretinator
Member since:
2005-07-06

The mistake Opera made was abandoning its niche. Apple for years has understood its niche in the computer world and stayed there. They have avoided the bottom-feeder world entirely. Opera used to have a niche. They were small, fast, and did one thing very well - MDI browsing. Then they decided they were going to be the browser-to-end-all-browsers. They added an email client, bit-torrent, web server, etc. I think that was a huge mistake.

Redemption - I think Opera is still a good web-rendering engine. Microsoft should buy it, re-brand it and give I.E. the boot. Kill 2 birds with 1 stone.

OT - I looked a Dillo last night. I have an old PII-266 laptop running OpenBSD. This used to be where Opera would come in before it grew so large.It turned out, Dillo was awesome. They have switched to the FLTK, and it was very nice and fast.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Mistake, redemption
by Dave_K on Sat 19th Sep 2009 12:08 UTC in reply to "Mistake, redemption"
Dave_K Member since:
2005-11-16

The mistake Opera made was abandoning its niche. Apple for years has understood its niche in the computer world and stayed there. They have avoided the bottom-feeder world entirely. Opera used to have a niche. They were small, fast, and did one thing very well - MDI browsing.


How have Opera abandoned their niche?

Opera's still small, still fast, and it still offers powerful MDI browsing.

MDI browsing is my single favourite Opera feature, but that's a very small niche indeed, and I don't think MDI on it's own would be enough to make Opera successful...

Then they decided they were going to be the browser-to-end-all-browsers. They added an email client, bit-torrent, web server, etc. I think that was a huge mistake.


Opera has been more than just a browser since it's earliest days. IIRC even the very first public release of Opera features a mail client and newsreader, version 3 (1997) certainly did.

The amazing thing is that it's still so small and fast with those extra features. Features that are used by a significant proportion of Opera's user base...

Reply Score: 2

RE: Mistake, redemption
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 18:16 UTC in reply to "Mistake, redemption"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

The mistake Opera made was abandoning its niche.

What niche?

And... MISTAKE? Opera's desktop user base has grown by 65% in the last year. It's closing in on 10% market share in Europe. They are profitable. And so on.

Opera used to have a niche. They were small, fast, and did one thing very well - MDI browsing. Then they decided they were going to be the browser-to-end-all-browsers.

WRONG. Opera has NEVER been just a browser. Even the first public version had a newsreader, e-mail, etc.

OT - I looked a Dillo last night. I have an old PII-266 laptop running OpenBSD. This used to be where Opera would come in before it grew so large.It turned out, Dillo was awesome. They have switched to the FLTK, and it was very nice and fast.

Yeah, and Dillo doesn't support anything.

Reply Score: 1

Mini Opera
by FishB8 on Fri 18th Sep 2009 20:41 UTC
FishB8
Member since:
2006-01-16

I really have no compelling reason to use Opera on my computer, but the mini version on my blackberry is a different story. I refuse to use anything else.

Reply Score: 1

Work on the GUI
by DBAlex on Fri 18th Sep 2009 20:44 UTC
DBAlex
Member since:
2006-12-31

Opera has a good rendering engine, there's no doubting that. But what has always turned me away from Opera is the non-native GUI. GUI's that don't use native widgets to me always seem clunky.

It definitely feels clunky on Linux w/ GNOME anyway. Maybe the GUI could be improved to detect which OS/GUI Toolkit it is running in and style itself appropriately.

I do however think Opera has a few features that are still missing from Firefox. I'm sure they can be implemented in Firefox though, or just added via Firefox extensions.

EDIT: Just trying Opera again, just installed the Tango CL theme, that improves things somewhat. The menus still look weird though.

Also, how can I enable middle-mouse button click scrolling like in Firefox?

Edited 2009-09-18 20:53 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Opera's Browser Is Irrelevant
by segedunum on Fri 18th Sep 2009 20:50 UTC
segedunum
Member since:
2005-07-06

I don't know why they keep banging on about increasing its usage. When you're competing against free offerings, and open source ones that ship by default on open source systems, you're always going to be at a loss. In addition, I find Opera totally useless because, despite its ACID compliance, it simply cannot handle AJAX web applications like Zimbra's web interface.

What they should do is free up their browser completely, open source it, start contributing to web standards where they are currently short, coming up with an acceptable Flash replacement and start being a web development tools company. That's the only way I can see them getting ahead as that would give them some semblance of control over their own destiny.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Opera's Browser Is Irrelevant
by nt_jerkface on Fri 18th Sep 2009 21:01 UTC in reply to "Opera's Browser Is Irrelevant"
nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

What they should do is free up their browser completely, open source it


Open sourcing software doesn't magically make it better. There has to be an incentive for people to work on it, especially if that work is voluntary. In the open source world there are already enough options when it comes to open source browsers. Furthermore the codebase for a browser is complex which means there is only so much individuals can do with it unless they are part of a bigger group and corporate sponsored so they can work full time.

Open sourcing Opera would be like OpenOffice where the code mostly sits in an open state while a corporate team works on it. It might give some people warm and fuzzy feelings to know that it is open source but if it was closed the functionaly would be the same.

Edited 2009-09-18 21:04 UTC

Reply Score: 4

segedunum Member since:
2005-07-06

Open sourcing software doesn't magically make it better.

They're between a rock and a hard place. They can't get their browser installed on a significant number of Windows or Mac machines so they have to go via the path of least resistance. Open sourcing a piece of software allows it to be installed quickly and easily on a multitude of open source systems, as well as being ported to all and sundry. Opera needs usage and lots of it to stay relevant or people don't want it. That's the paradox.

There has to be an incentive for people to work on it, especially if that work is voluntary.

There seems to be a significant enough incentive for most open source projects out there.

In the open source world there are already enough options when it comes to open source browsers.

So competing against them for usage with a proprietary browser that is far more difficult to install and get running on such platforms is a better option?

...there is only so much individuals can do with it unless they are part of a bigger group and corporate sponsored so they can work full time.

Whether it be Firefox or especially WebKit base browsers, you have a number of corporate sponsors and/or individuals with their own interests who contribute. The open sourcing of WebKit is a prime example and it is helping and will help Safari as a browser that is able to run the web applications that people care about, thus giving it relevance. It's an example Opera should have followed years ago.

It might give some people warm and fuzzy feelings to know that it is open source but if it was closed the functionaly would be the same.

Rubbish. Just look at the improvement between Star Office as it was when it was closed and as soon as it was open sourced as Open Office. Open sourcing something gives it a path of least resistance against the competition that doesn't exuist if it is closed. It gets ported to a multitude of different hardware and OS platforms, it gets widely tested, widely installed without you needing to do much and you attract badly needed testers and contributors - however few they might be.

Reply Score: 1

nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

Open sourcing a piece of software allows it to be installed quickly and easily on a multitude of open source systems, as well as being ported to all and sundry.


Which systems? Where? There is no potential market that is unserved. Opera is already available to 99% of desktop users. Your view of open source is naive.

If Opera went open source there would be a few weeks of tech articles praising them and then that would be it. Their marketshare wouldn't change at all. Demand for open source browsers is already being met with FF and Chrome.


Rubbish. Just look at the improvement between Star Office as it was when it was closed and as soon as it was open sourced as Open Office.



Perhaps I wasn't clear in my point which was that the majority of improvements in OpenOffice have been from Sun programmers, not voluntary programmers. The same goes for the most successful open source projects. They all have a core base of corporate programmers that work full time. It's a myth that software projects like OpenOffice and Firefox are mostly built by volunteer programmers in their spare time.

Sun probably could have kept StarOffice closed and charged something minimal like $15 a copy and it still would have been a success. 99% of the people that download it do so because it is a free alternative to MS office, not because it is open source. If MS Office was free only a few dedicated gpl'rs would download OpenOffice.

If the community programming model was even half as effective as people like you make it sound then MS wouldn't be able to charge $300 for Office or $1000 for Visual Studio. The million man programmer army is a myth. There are plenty of open source projects that are stagnating because no one is contributing to them. Open sourcing a project does not always confer more benefits than costs.

Reply Score: 2

segedunum Member since:
2005-07-06

Which systems? Where? There is no potential market that is unserved. Opera is already available to 99% of desktop users. Your view of open source is naive.

I'm afraid if you don't understand how critical it is to make sure that your software can either be pre-installed, or installed easily, on a variety of systems and even hardware platforms and reducing the barriers to entry then you really don't know very much at all.

If Opera went open source there would be a few weeks of tech articles praising them and then that would be it. Their marketshare wouldn't change at all.

It's the only place they can go if they want to increase the usage of their browser at all. They will then have to compete with Firefox and Chrome head on. Firefox and Chrome are not particularly great browsers, especially on open source systems, and from there they need to make some money off the back of that usage - web development tools, search results etc. It is doable. Sitting on their hands isn't really an option, and the article is asking the question.

Perhaps I wasn't clear in my point which was that the majority of improvements in OpenOffice have been from Sun programmers, not voluntary programmers.

Maybe I wasn't clear. As an example, most of the Linux kernel is developed by contributors employed by larger organisations, but the point is they share that work together. In the case of Open Office that happens to a lesser extent, but there is a sizeable contribution from Novell and other companies with a vested interest in Open Office. However small those contributions are, they help Sun and have helped Open Office greatly.

As I said, you just need to look at the improvements between the old Star Office and Open Office - and Sun didn't put more people on the project. The Star Office people simply carried over.

You have a strange monolithic view of how open source software is developed that isn't backed up by hard figures. You seem to think that because a lot of contributors are employed that that somehow validates the one-company-developes-everything development model:

http://www.informationweek.com/news/software/linux/showArticle.jhtm...

The same goes for the most successful open source projects. They all have a core base of corporate programmers that work full time.

There is a core of programmers who generally get employed, but they are employed by different organisations and they share the work together. You also then have individuals and smaller organisations who have a vested interest in the platform contributing, as well as the handful of individual who can come up with different ideas and take things in a different direction.

You have a very antiquated and inaccurate view of how open source projects work. You also seem to be rather desperate to get this over, as if it somehow validates another kind of business model.

It's a myth that software projects like OpenOffice and Firefox are mostly built by volunteer programmers in their spare time.

I never said that was the case, but they do exist and the ability to have different thinker who can bring something different to the software has historically been important in open source projects.

Sun probably could have kept StarOffice closed and charged something minimal like $15 a copy and it still would have been a success.

I'm sorry, but this discussion serves no useful purpose because you seem to be desperate to validate some other kind of business model with your own agenda. The Linux kernel is not developed by one organisation throwing billions at it.

As I've said, improvements to Star Office accelerated greatly after it was open sourced and there is nothing that helps adoption more than having something freely available. With the source available other companies like Novell and a handful of individual contributors got it to compile and run on different systems, hardware platforms, improved MS Office format handling and improved integration with Gnome and KDE. Without those improvements few would have been paying for Star Office as it was.

Reply Score: 2

nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

I'm afraid if you don't understand how critical it is to make sure that your software can either be pre-installed, or installed easily, on a variety of systems and even hardware platforms and reducing the barriers to entry then you really don't know very much at all.


You're avoiding the question. Linux has 1% of the market. Where are these potential systems? Even if half of existing Linux distros preinstall Opera it won't make a difference. Most Linux users will still choose Firefox or Chrome. Even if half those users chose Linux it still wouldn't make a difference.

OS Marketshare statistics
http://gs.statcounter.com/#os-ww-monthly-200808-200909


As I've said, improvements to Star Office accelerated greatly after it was open sourced and there is nothing that helps adoption more than having something freely available.


You also don't seem to deny that the vast majority of the improvements were from Sun employees, right?

If most of the improvements were from Sun employess then most of the added value was from corporate sponsorship, right?

Have a look at this OpenOffice active developers graph for yourself:
http://www.gnome.org/~michael/images/2008-09-29-active-both.png

Outside contributions are minimial and could have easily been replaced with a few more employees, which could have been paid for by even charging $1 a copy. Heck at $5 a copy they probably could have added a full team and made it better than it is today.

People download OpenOffice because MSOffice costs $100+. If they were both free only a fraction of current OO users would stay with it. It's success has little to do with it being open source.

Reply Score: 2

segedunum Member since:
2005-07-06

You're avoiding the question. Linux has 1% of the market. Where are these potential systems?

They need to increase their usage and that's what the article is asking. It's like saying that Firefox shouldn't have bothered because Windows had IE and that it shouldn't be installed on open source platforms because they're irrelevant. It has all added up. You're painting over the fact that there are reasons why virtually no one uses Opera. Arguing that the 'potential is there' is irrelevant.

You also don't seem to deny that the vast majority of the improvements were from Sun employees, right?

No they weren't actually. The KDE integration came from an individual contributor who then went to work for Novell and Novell contributed Excel VB improvements as well as having a go-oo rebuild and working on a lot of optimisations. That's why you have open source software. The fact that they are sponsored for their work, or that an individual comes in and then gets sponsored, is totally irrelevant.

If most of the improvements were from Sun employess then most of the added value was from corporate sponsorship, right?

I really don't know how we got to talking about Open Office exclusively, but you've been proved wrong by a multitude of open source projects. You're also very confused about what it is that you're arguing. There are many sponsored developers working on the Linux kernel for example, but they don't all say that open sourcing something is irrelevant because they all share the work load. That's the point. Completely independent and volunteer developers are fewer, but they're the ones who tend to come in with the groundbreaking ideas.

Arguing about 'volunteer' programmers is irrelevant to your initial argument that open sourcing Opera would be a waste of time. This then turned into some argument against open source software itself.

Outside contributions are minimial and could have easily been replaced with a few more employees, which could have been paid for by even charging $1 a copy.

The only correlation that matters is that when Open Office was open sourced the improvements users cared about came thick and fast. You also have a very strange view of software sales.

Heck at $5 a copy they probably could have added a full team and made it better than it is today.

It wasn't made better when it was closed source and it started to become irrelevant because of that. How you expect people to pay for that regardless I don't know.

It's success has little to do with it being open source.

Open Office improvements increased dramatically when it was open sourced. Take it or leave it.

Reply Score: 2

wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

[q]They need to increase their usage and that's what the article is asking.[/quote]
They are increasing their usage. Their desktop user base grew by 65% in a year (Q2 2008 to Q2 2009), and their market share in Europe is approaching 10% (more than Chrome and Safar combined).

Reply Score: 1

RE: Opera's Browser Is Irrelevant
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 18:17 UTC in reply to "Opera's Browser Is Irrelevant"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

I don't know why they keep banging on about increasing its usage. When you're competing against free offerings, and open source ones that ship by default on open source systems, you're always going to be at a loss.

Uh, what? Opera is a free download.

What they should do is free up their browser completely, open source it, start contributing to web standards where they are currently short

Opera has probably contributed more to open web standards than anyone else. They have been spending HUGE amounts of money through the years on open web standards.

That's the only way I can see them getting ahead as that would give them some semblance of control over their own destiny.

LOL. They are growing massively. I think they are doing just fine.

Reply Score: 1

Niche
by AIA007 on Fri 18th Sep 2009 21:03 UTC
AIA007
Member since:
2009-09-18

In Georgia Opera is number 1 browser according to most research results (I think, Georgia is only country where opera is #1). I loved Opera too... when I had terrible dial-up connection, since it was significantly faster than mozilla or IE6.

But after I got broadband connection I never really used Opera any more (though, I always have one on my PCs). Reasons why I do not like Opera is:

1. It leaves feeling of unfinished product somehow.
2. It has no ideology behind (for example Firefox is grass-roots movement as was mentioned).
3. Most important. Opera lost niche or competitive advantage if you like. "Fastest browser in the world", it maybe used to be... now actually Javascript performance is pretty poor (comparing to competitors), in terms of "lightweightness" Chrome clerly wins. Opera scores 100 in Acid test? so who cares? and again Safari and Chrome (at least developers' branch which I have at hte moment) does the same.

So now if I want all-in-one powerful browser I use FF (in 90% of cases) if I want something lightweight (on my netbook mostly) I use Chrome (Chromium to be precise)... So opera kind of lost its place...

Conclusion: IMHO a) they should add idea behind the Opera (pretty tough task I know). b) they should find new competitive advantage (they were doing well, and they still do on mobile market). c) It is great that they are innovating all the time... but some polishing of base features would be great.

Edited 2009-09-18 21:06 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: Niche
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 18:19 UTC in reply to "Niche"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

I think, Georgia is only country where opera is #1

No, there are several other countries.

It leaves feeling of unfinished product somehow.

Nonsense. It's the most integrated browser there is.

It has no ideology behind (for example Firefox is grass-roots movement as was mentioned).

Again, nonsense. Opera has always put big money into open standards.

Most important. Opera lost niche or competitive advantage if you like. "Fastest browser in the world", it maybe used to be... now actually Javascript performance is pretty poor (comparing to competitors)

Wrong.

Those JS benchmarks test very specific and tiny parts of JS. They are irrelevant for real world sites. On real sites, Opera is still the fastest.

in terms of "lightweightness" Chrome clerly wins

Wrong again. Chrome is a huge download compared to Opera. Opera is still smaller and faster.

So now if I want all-in-one powerful browser I use FF (in 90% of cases) if I want something lightweight (on my netbook mostly) I use Chrome (Chromium to be precise)... So opera kind of lost its place...

Maybe for YOU personally. But not for the 40-50 million desktop users they have by now.

Reply Score: 1

recent irrelevancy
by bnolsen on Fri 18th Sep 2009 21:06 UTC
bnolsen
Member since:
2006-01-06

Come to think of it, 2 things made opera lose relevance.

- Webkit going mainstream
- Javascript wars

If it were just opera, IE and firefox in the field, there'd still be a place for opera. The extra players enabled by webkit really changed the dynamic. The javascript wars really hurt opera's edge since render speed is being replaced by interaction speed as a metric.

Edited 2009-09-18 21:09 UTC

Reply Score: 4

v RE: recent irrelevancy
by segedunum on Fri 18th Sep 2009 22:35 UTC in reply to "recent irrelevancy"
RE[2]: recent irrelevancy
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 18:20 UTC in reply to "RE: recent irrelevancy"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

The problem is that Opera still doesn't actually support JavaScript well and certainly can't run a lot of the AJAX based web applications out there.

This is completely wrong. Opera fully supports JavaScript and Ajax. If it doesn't work, it's usually because of browser sniffing. Just mask as Firefox, and it will start working.

Reply Score: 1

RE: recent irrelevancy
by Aragorn992 on Sat 19th Sep 2009 19:59 UTC in reply to "recent irrelevancy"
Aragorn992 Member since:
2007-05-27

"The javascript wars really hurt opera's edge since render speed is being replaced by interaction speed as a metric"

Yes this is a pretty good summary of what I've been thinking for a while.

Reply Score: 1

Opera can survive being a niche product
by Alexandre on Fri 18th Sep 2009 21:37 UTC
Alexandre
Member since:
2008-10-30

I can be biased, Opera is the browser I use for more than 5 years and for me is the best one by far - and I've tried IE, Firefox, Safari (for Windows) and Chrome.

Actually the one in a dangerous position is Firefox, with Chrome having extensions it will slowly die. Opera small base of users will probably still be around for many years.

IE is the most used browser and it's probably the most miserable by far - hey! life is not always fair.

Reply Score: 2

I like Opera...
by UltraZelda64 on Fri 18th Sep 2009 21:57 UTC
UltraZelda64
Member since:
2006-12-05

...and I like choice. And Opera provides a very nice, *distinctive* choice over the others. I would hate to see them do a major overhaul of the browser that makes it seem more like Firefox than Opera. For that, you might as well use Firefox! However, some minor Firefox-like actions would be nice, as in some cases they do seem to make more sense.

What Opera really needs, I guess, is what just about every other successful profit-based company needs: to advertise. Of course, I block ads, so I would never see that crap myself. But then, I don't need to be sold on Opera, as I already know about (and have for several years) and like the browser in the first place.

In general I hate advertising to begin with, but from a business perspective it would probably help.

Reply Score: 3

My view
by Hisoka999 on Fri 18th Sep 2009 22:05 UTC
Hisoka999
Member since:
2009-08-13

1. it does not feel as a complete product, its more like 100 small useless tools together
2. a horrible user interface
example: RSS-Feed handling is not very good, the way of the firefox is way better
3. not integrated in the desktop
4. i am using some important extensions like adblock plus, no-script,FoxyProxy and FireBug. there is nothing around that is nearly as intuitive

The mozilla browser faild since it was more than a browser and it is the same with opera.


So make it an browser and not 10 halfbacket tools.

Reply Score: 2

RE: My view
by ari-free on Fri 18th Sep 2009 22:11 UTC in reply to "My view"
ari-free Member since:
2007-01-22

that's right. mozilla was going nowhere until a few people split up to develop firefox with this idea: KISS and offer extensions for those who want more complexity

Reply Score: 3

RE: My view
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 18:21 UTC in reply to "My view"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

1. it does not feel as a complete product, its more like 100 small useless tools together
2. a horrible user interface

This is just nonsense. It has the most coherent and integrated UI.

example: RSS-Feed handling is not very good, the way of the firefox is way better

I disagree. Firefox's way of handling newsfeeds is terrible.

4. i am using some important extensions like adblock plus, no-script,FoxyProxy and FireBug. there is nothing around that is nearly as intuitive

Actually, there is.

So make it an browser and not 10 halfbacket tools.

LOL. You clearly have no idea what you are talking about.

Reply Score: 1

They should call it quits
by nt_jerkface on Fri 18th Sep 2009 22:23 UTC
nt_jerkface
Member since:
2009-08-26

Sell the company to Microsoft and give bonuses to the employees.

They're competing in a market with well financed corps that can spend millions on R&D like pocket change. Any new feature they come up with will simply be adopted by the others. Speed differences between modern browsers are overrated as bandwidth is the bottleneck in the system. On a modern machine IE8, FF and the others are plenty fast.

As a company they have been profitable which is what really matters. Sell the company now while it is in good standing. Get out while you can and be glad that you had a good run.

Reply Score: 1

RE: They should call it quits
by Dave_K on Sat 19th Sep 2009 12:21 UTC in reply to "They should call it quits"
Dave_K Member since:
2005-11-16

Sell the company to Microsoft and give bonuses to the employees. They're competing in a market with well financed corps that can spend millions on R&D like pocket change. Any new feature they come up with will simply be adopted by the others.


And yet Opera still has great features that aren't available in other browsers, and others that simply work better in Opera. Even with extensions (and the potential problems they bring) there are still plenty of features that are unique to Opera, a few of them dating back to its earliest days.

Why do you think that people still use it despite the other choices?

Speed differences between modern browsers are overrated as bandwidth is the bottleneck in the system. On a modern machine IE8, FF and the others are plenty fast.


If I open a load of tabs in IE/FF on my fairly modern PC they slow to a crawl (if they don't crash first), while Opera keeps on running smoothly. I browse very heavily, with a lot of different pages open, and so far I haven't had a single crash in Opera 10.

Not that I'd try to open that many pages in other browsers; without Opera's powerful window management features it'd be an exercise in frustration.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: They should call it quits
by nt_jerkface on Sat 19th Sep 2009 16:52 UTC in reply to "RE: They should call it quits"
nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

If I open a load of tabs in IE/FF on my fairly modern PC they slow to a crawl (if they don't crash first), while Opera keeps on running smoothly. I browse very heavily, with a lot of different pages open, and so far I haven't had a single crash in Opera 10. Not that I'd try to open that many pages in other browsers; without Opera's powerful window management features it'd be an exercise in frustration.


What type of machine do you have? I have a dual-core 2 ghz cpu and 3 gigs of ram which is pretty typical for new notebooks. I tried Opera but didn't notice a difference and I load over 30 tabs all the time. Opera may have a better engine but it doesn't matter if most people don't notice any difference.

You said Opera has unique features but have they been enough to attract new users? Their marketshare has been stagnant for years.

Opera missed their opportunity when everyone was using IE6. That was when there was a clear performance difference between IE and the alternatives. I was asked a few months ago by a non-techie what the point of FF was when IE8 seemed just as fast. That never happened in the IE6 days when people would thank me for weeks after telling them about FF.

Opera should have stopped charging $20 a copy in the IE6 days but they didn't and Firefox became the default alternative. They screwed up and should now sell the company to MS while they can.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: They should call it quits
by Dave_K on Sat 19th Sep 2009 18:49 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: They should call it quits"
Dave_K Member since:
2005-11-16

What type of machine do you have? I have a dual-core 2 ghz cpu and 3 gigs of ram which is pretty typical for new notebooks. I tried Opera but didn't notice a difference and I load over 30 tabs all the time. Opera may have a better engine but it doesn't matter if most people don't notice any difference.


At home a 2.4Ghz Athlon X2 with 2Gb RAM. I don't find it unusual for either IE8 or FF3 to become unresponsive during heavy use. At work I sometimes have to use IE8 on an old 3Ghz P4 with 1Gb RAM, which is an utterly miserable experience. In contrast Opera takes anything I can throw at it and runs great on slower hardware (like a Netbook for example).

In Opera I can happily open hundreds of tabs and it'll just keep on going. Open all my bookmarks in the background simultaneously, or use the Links panel to open every link in a news aggregation site, and Opera still runs smoothly. Yes, those are extreme examples, but I like the fact that I don't really have to care what I keep open.

If I find a bunch of interesting news stories, forum posts, reviews, etc. that I can't be bothered looking through right away, I can leave them all open in Opera without either the engine (or the UI) giving me grief. I find that more convenient than bookmarking a bunch of pages that I'll probably only look at once. I like keeping my bookmarks for the sites I visit regularly.

Of course, it doesn't matter to someone browsing with a relatively small number of tabs on their modern PC, but for me Opera's speed and stability is still an advantage.

You said Opera has unique features but have they been enough to attract new users? Their marketshare has been stagnant for years.


Are people even hearing about and trying Opera to discover its features?

Even if they did, I honestly don't know if Opera's features would be enough to get people to switch. All I can say is that they're enough to make Opera one of my all time favourite applications, and make all other browsers feel crippled and restrictive in comparison - even an extension laden and heavily tweaked Firefox installation.

They screwed up and should now sell the company to MS while they can.


Would Microsoft even want to buy Opera?

Considering how many Opera features find their ways into other browsers, I'm surprised that you'd want to hurt Firefox et al. by removing a source of so many clever ideas. More competition in the browser market is a good thing, even if Opera isn't the browser for you.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: They should call it quits
by vivainio on Sat 19th Sep 2009 21:04 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: They should call it quits"
vivainio Member since:
2008-12-26


Of course, it doesn't matter to someone browsing with a relatively small number of tabs on their modern PC, but for me Opera's speed and stability is still an advantage.


I tried the new Opera briefly, but it didn't seem to have real speed advantage over Firefox (on my slow netbook).

Worse for Opera, Chromium seems to blow everything else I've tried (on Linux) out of the water.

Opera needs a new niche, it's not the "fast and small" web browser anymore, and IIUC the mobile space is being taken over by Webkit browsers as we speak.

Reply Score: 2

nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

Would Microsoft even want to buy Opera? Considering how many Opera features find their ways into other browsers, I'm surprised that you'd want to hurt Firefox et al. by removing a source of so many clever ideas. More competition in the browser market is a good thing, even if Opera isn't the browser for you.


A lot of their recent ideas have been gimmicky or serve little purpose like sticking a torrent engine the browser.

They've obviously made some contributions to browser tech but the odds are stacked against them, especially now that Google has entered the market. Google and MS can burn money to get users while Opera can't. If browser add-ons were enough to get users then Opera would be doing better.

I just think they should get out while they are still profitable. MS would probably buy them to get rid of the CEO and pick up their mobile browser. But it doesn't have to be MS, Google might be interested as well.

I think they're going to get stuck in the middle of a battle between tech giants. Better to get out now then go bankrupt later.

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: They should call it quits
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 18:06 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: They should call it quits"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

A lot of their recent ideas have been gimmicky or serve little purpose like sticking a torrent engine the browser.

They didnt' stick a "torrent engine" in the browser. They allowed you to download through BitTorrent, which makes perfect sense.

But that was added ages ago, not recently.

They've obviously made some contributions to browser tech but the odds are stacked against them, especially now that Google has entered the market.

And yet, after Chrome arrived, Opera's growth has only accelerated! Funny that.

I think they're going to get stuck in the middle of a battle between tech giants. Better to get out now then go bankrupt later.

They have always been in this position, and they have always been thriving.

Reply Score: 1

RE: They should call it quits
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 18:07 UTC in reply to "They should call it quits"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

As a company they have been profitable which is what really matters. Sell the company now while it is in good standing. Get out while you can and be glad that you had a good run.

Nonsense. The market is plenty big enough for lots of browser players.

Reply Score: 1

Opera is great for kiosks
by Lumbergh on Fri 18th Sep 2009 22:48 UTC
Lumbergh
Member since:
2005-06-29

...well at least on non-windows OSs

Reply Score: 2

Comment by Anon9
by Anon9 on Fri 18th Sep 2009 22:49 UTC
Anon9
Member since:
2008-06-30

Firstly, I honestly can't relate to how someone would think FireFox looks better than Opera.

Secondly, I am an American that has used Opera for many years. I know some other people that use it, but it is definitely a minority compared to IE and FireFox. I would say from what I have seen, it may be tied with Chrome and it is way past Safari. That is just what I would guess if I didn't look at the stats.

I don't know why more don't use Opera. I have tried to convert people to Opera on many occasions, and I have even succeeded once, but most people either aren't the type to change (and thus stick with IE) or are sold on FireFox. I think the most often cited reason I've encountered for liking FireFox is extensions. Personally, I don't find extensions to be a killer feature at all.

Also, in response to
[quote]
Opera Unite, their claim to democratise your data is a centralised system dependent on Opera servers where users have to conform to Terms of Service.
[/quote]
my understanding is that all they do is act as a proxy and a hoster for downloading services. You don't have to use the proxy. If you someone puts your IP address in their web browser and your port isn't blocked by your firewall, it should work. Also, you can download services from the developers' websites too. So it seems you are portraying Opera as Apple when actually they are more like Palm. If they reject a service, they still let you give it away on your own site. I might be wrong about this, but that's the way I understand it.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by Anon9
by kenji on Mon 21st Sep 2009 15:31 UTC in reply to "Comment by Anon9"
kenji Member since:
2009-04-08

Firstly, I honestly can't relate to how someone would think FireFox looks better than Opera.

I second that and then some.

I don't know why more don't use Opera. I have tried to convert people to Opera on many occasions, and I have even succeeded once, but most people either aren't the type to change (and thus stick with IE) or are sold on FireFox. I think the most often cited reason I've encountered for liking FireFox is extensions. Personally, I don't find extensions to be a killer feature at all.

The hurdle that I have encountered with converting people to using Opera is that Opera is more complex than simple browsers like IE and Firefox. It takes some training and practice to get the hang of Opera. I think Opera just isn't the browser for the masses. People want more simplicity, I think.

I love Opera, use it everyday and it meets my needs.

Reply Score: 1

Comment by Coxy
by Coxy on Fri 18th Sep 2009 22:53 UTC
Coxy
Member since:
2006-07-01

Firefox is not a household name, unless you spend your time checking in nerd houses. Opera should just except that they will never get any bigger. People couldn't give a rat arse if the browser passes some geek rendering test, what the name of the rendering engine is or how great it may be or how fast it parses JavaScript? Comm'on how many people here know some one who isn't a geek and who has even heard of a javascript parser or knows what one does? Or knows what a rendering engine is? Opera's time is over, FF is here, and now google moving in on the scene... well they tried to.

I think just about sums it up. If Google can't get a significant market share (with their branding clout and name recognition) what chance does opera have? Seriously. Even apple couldn't get many users (on windows). And people at Opera think they still can?

Real people couldn't care about IRC chat, torrents, widgits (are there actually any good ones?), Rendering engines, JS parsers, rendering speed, html5, css3 compatibility. They just want to see what there friends are doing on myspace or face book, read emails and then go to the pub or club at the weekend.

Which is where I'm going now...

Edited 2009-09-18 22:53 UTC

Reply Score: 2

What's so good about Opera?
by da_Chicken on Fri 18th Sep 2009 22:57 UTC
da_Chicken
Member since:
2006-01-01

Personally, I'm not really interested in what Opera should do to increase its market share, because I much prefer FOSS software. I'd be more interested to hear opinions about what Free / Open Source Software browsers could learn from Opera? So, where do you think Opera does better than Firefox, Midori, Konqueror, Arora, ...?

I use Elinks quite a lot, because it works even without the Xorg-server. The Links version from the Twibright guys also shows pretty pictures (in directfb) without Xorg. For Xorg desktop environments I prefer XFCE4, and the new WebKit-based browser called Midori is well integrated with that environment. For KDE4 there are Konqueror and Arora. The gecko-based web browsers are also quite popular in all desktop environments.

I don't actually use desktop environments that much, just some applications that come with those environments. In practice I prefer stumpwm, and occasionally ratpoison, if I need a GUI. Anyway, I'd like to hear what advantages the Opera fanboys think their favourite browser has over the leading FOSS browsers. So, I'm here offering you a chance to praise Opera's virtues. Are there any?

Reply Score: 3

RE: What's so good about Opera?
by j-kidd on Sat 19th Sep 2009 08:47 UTC in reply to "What's so good about Opera?"
j-kidd Member since:
2005-07-06

1. A tab model that works, e.g. new tab opens next to the active one, focus switches to the last active tab after closing the current one, unlike Firefox's Keep It Simply Stupid model that more or less forces me to use Tab Mix Plus, which itself is a real pain to keep up-to-date with all the Firefox Alpha/Beta/RC, especially if you use multiple computers.

2. Tab bar on the sides, which is not supported by Tab Mix Plus, and thus not supported by Firefox because the extensions that allow you to do so doesn't work with TabMix Plus, and any self-respected user can't use Firefox without Tab Mix Plus.

If Chrome developers were any smart, they would have copied this instead of/on top of the tab bar on top thingie. Netbooks, their targeted market, got wide screens. Use it.

3. Per-tab search box, unlike Firefox/Arora where the location bar is per-tab while the search box is global, which is just stupid.

4. A location bar such that if you type in a URL or select an item from the dropdown, it will go to the top of the list. Awesome Bar only does so for selection, so it is not so awesome for me. Chrome OmniBox doesn't even have the dropdown, same for Arora.

5. Once you close all the tabs, you can have a browser window without any opened tab (note: this is configurable). Firefox, with its infinite extensibility, cannot do this. Arora can't. Chrome can't.

Btw, this is related to #1, i.e. someone has actually put in some thought when designing the tab model.

6. A fully customizable UI, so that you don't have to install a "Show Go Button" extension in order to show the Go button.

7. A fully custmizable shortcut system, so that you don't have to install a "Disable Backspace Navigation" extension in order to disable the backspace navigation.

Reply Score: 5

RE: What's so good about Opera?
by adriboca on Sat 19th Sep 2009 19:34 UTC in reply to "What's so good about Opera?"
adriboca Member since:
2009-09-19

In the distant past I have used Mozilla, which inherited a decent method of configuring the encrypted TLS/SSL connections. Unfortunately the Firefox developers replaced that style of configuration with the style of configuration used by MS IE, where you do not have any control over the protocol used for secure connections. I make a lot of online transactions, either buying online or giving instructions to my banks, so I cannot accept a browser that lacks control over the security features. Therefore, when Firefox replaced Mozilla, I had to switch to Opera. Regarding other features, some are more convenient on Opera, some are more convenient on Firefox, the two are practically equivalent, at least on Linux, where I use them. But the single feature that I mentioned, the security configuration, totally disqualified Firefox for me. If Opera had not existed, I might have worked to modify the Firefox sources or to create a custom extension, but since Opera already does all what I need, why bother?

Reply Score: 1

I guess the world needs another browser
by Phloptical on Fri 18th Sep 2009 23:02 UTC
Phloptical
Member since:
2006-10-10

Although, if the Wii's version of Opera is any indication, then I'm surprised it's still around. It's Capital-C Crap.

I used the ad-based free version of Opera in 2000, and it was alright. It wasn't IE, so it had that going for it. The tabs were a nice addition, although I had seen them before in another browser about 4 years earlier.

Honestly, as long as any browser is standards compatible, and web dev's start adhering to them, then let there be 1,000 web browsers. Why not?

Reply Score: 2

wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

Although, if the Wii's version of Opera is any indication, then I'm surprised it's still around. It's Capital-C Crap.

Huh? It works great on my TV.

Reply Score: 1

Phloptical Member since:
2006-10-10

Maybe it's the HD on my TV. Some pages were fine, some weren't formatted correctly.

Reply Score: 2

Opera does not do what I want
by OSGuy on Fri 18th Sep 2009 23:03 UTC
OSGuy
Member since:
2006-01-01

I want to be able to re-arrange bookmarks from within the menu. I want to be able to drag/cut/copy/paste bookmarks from within the menu. Opera doesn't do this, Firefox does, thus Opera is not the browser for me. IE v4 to v6 did this perfectly and so did Explorer however they stuffed it up with IE7 and IE8. My current default browser is FF.

It used to be Chrome however Chrome doesn't have a status bar thus hovering over a bookmark you don't have a clue where it is pointing. I am sure this will be fixed.

Edited 2009-09-18 23:08 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: Opera does not do what I want
by Stratoukos on Fri 18th Sep 2009 23:47 UTC in reply to "Opera does not do what I want"
Stratoukos Member since:
2009-02-11

You can drag/cut/copy/paste bookmarks in Opera from the bookmarks panel. If drag and drop isn't working you have to click on the view icon in the panel and select "Sort by My Order".

Reply Score: 1

OSGuy Member since:
2006-01-01

I am sorry but that's not what I want and is quite different than what I want. What I want is what I have said above. It is different then using a separate window. If Opera wants web dominance, they better do what users want. I am pretty sure I am not the only one that would like the feature described above...no ifs and no buts and no but you can do it this way....

Edited 2009-09-19 03:11 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Phone Member since:
2009-09-19

Hit Shift+F4 and the Bookmark panel should pop out of the left side of the screen. And then you are good to manipulate the book marks as you please.

It reads as if you like a lot of mouse navigating. I would suggest setting up the panels to pop out when you click on the left or right side of your screen. I think the default panel button is tab bar, but I setup the side click instead. You really should give it a try. It's not a separate window.

I think you could take advantage of the Notes panel as well. While I browse, I like to write notes about the different ideas that pop into my head. And then the ideas are right next to my bookmarks.

Also I think you might be able to take advantage of the duplicate tab option. Duplicate a tab and have the tab's whole history right there. I use this right now because osnews doesn't display your comment when I am writing a reply. Firefox hasn't copied this feature yet.

Reply Score: 1

Axord Member since:
2005-06-30

I use this right now because osnews doesn't display your comment when I am writing a reply.

Doesn't the (Show Parent) thing work for you?

Firefox hasn't copied this feature yet.

I'd prefer it if Opera copied the Firefox way instead: middle-click on the back button.

Reply Score: 1

Phone Member since:
2009-09-19

"I use this right now because osnews doesn't display your comment when I am writing a reply.

Doesn't the (Show Parent) thing work for you?
"

It does work. I did not know there was a (Show Parent) thing. It's my first time posting here.

"Firefox hasn't copied this feature yet.

I'd prefer it if Opera copied the Firefox way instead: middle-click on the back button.
"

Interesting. I would think the option would appear when a tab is right-clicked.

Thanks

Reply Score: 1

Anon9 Member since:
2008-06-30

F4 works to open the side panels. The shift is unnecessary.

Reply Score: 1

Phone Member since:
2009-09-19

I thought Opera had that as the keyboard shortcut on their website. It seems I misread the shortcut.

Reply Score: 1

hmm
by poundsmack on Fri 18th Sep 2009 23:08 UTC
poundsmack
Member since:
2005-07-13

a few things I am seeing while reading this thread kind of confuse me, so I will address them as I am corious about peoples feedback. Most of my opinions are from a windows use standpoint, but I also use Opera on my PC-BSD desktop.

"So make it an browser and not 10 halfbacket tools."

Opera to me seems to be one of the best pachaged all in one style solutions I have ever seen, most end users I have shown Opera to tend to agree. Though one thing I do notice is that virually no one uses all the features, but it has something for everyone, and thats not a bad thing per say.

"So competing against them for usage with a proprietary browser that is far more difficult to install and get running on such platforms is a better option?"

Opera is just as easy to instal and use than any other browser. Hit next a few times and choose what broswer you want your book marks to import from. If that process confuses people please call me, I chage 60$ an hour and would gladly take the full hour to hit next 4 or 5 times.

"The mistake Opera made was abandoning its niche. Apple for years has understood its niche in the computer world and stayed there. They have avoided the bottom-feeder world entirely. Opera used to have a niche. They were small, fast, and did one thing very well - MDI browsing. Then they decided they were going to be the browser-to-end-all-browsers. They added an email client, bit-torrent, web server, etc. I think that was a huge mistake."

This isn't a mistake on Opera's part, this seperates their offering from a pack of other browsers that are just browsers. Opera added those things at a time when they needed to step up inovation in their product, keep in mind Opera's inovations were basically coppied to most modern browsers.

"What they should do is free up their browser completely, open source it, start contributing to web standards where they are currently short, coming up with an acceptable Flash replacement and start being a web development tools company. "

OSS is not the answer to everything. while it might allow for a stripped down Opera version (which would be cool), i can't see a movement like firefox had or otherwise. Opera has contributed to web standards and pioneered many inovations in the web world. comming up with a flash replacement would be an utter waist of their time, not that it is a bad idea, but their are plenty of good reasons why no one else has done it yet.

Opera keeps churning out releases and with each major release they find some way ot make it better, turbo is a good example, and unity is getting pretty decent. Opera to me looks pretty polished and is one of the most usable pieces of software to scale multiple platforms the way it does. I am not thrilled with their practice of nagging the EU like a child who just has his toy taken away, but they make a good product that the average user (as well as many tech savy people) seem to enjoy. But, it's all opion I supose, either way I always find it odd when people just flat out hate it, who knows though...

Reply Score: 3

Agreed
by fukudasan on Sat 19th Sep 2009 00:14 UTC in reply to "hmm"
fukudasan Member since:
2006-06-04

Personally, I just couldn't agree more - I install Opera and use it as my default browser on ALL of my machines - including at the school (here in Korea) where I work. I use it under both XP Home/Pro and Mandriva 2008.1/2009.1 and I am more than happy with it. In fact, I started using it wayyy back (around version 4.x) almost ten years ago now. It's fast (I find both IE and FF to be slow as old dogs) and I can do a huge amount of work with it.

I don't understand what people mean, however, when they complain about how it looks. I am using it under KDE3.x.x and KDE 4.3.x as well as XP and it looks exactly how I want it to look - colour-wise, it integrates nicely with both versions of KDE and there is a huge list of skins for different OSes and DEs. I can make it look simple yet still do a huge amount of things with it - watch online video, listen to music, run Facebook apps, you name it. What's the problem? It even looks good under XPize (thank you OSNews for introducing me to that!).

Also, I have had a blog with Opera for a long time and met people there, and I just installed version 10 with Unite last night and it is all working fine - maybe this is just what I was looking for. Features I had been thinking about trying to do for a long time are now all there and I don't have to spend ages thinking about how to do it all myself.

I also do not need an endless list of "extensions", just to be able to cut out (or just deactivate) functionality that I don't think I need, surf as many sites as possible, and blend in as seamlessly as possible with the DE of choice. If I encounter sites that somehow don't work properly with Opera, I avoid them. Simple as that. They should go to the wall and I won't miss them, especially if they are crippled because they were designed solely with IE in mind. I also like being able to just hit the "Wand" instead of typing in passwords, just that one feature speeds everything up for me, and I love it.

While I agree with those who say that a browser with tons of features is not always a good thing, we are all individuals and choose things for individual reasons. IE is not portable into Linux (and I wouldn't want it there in any case), and being able to use an apparently identical pair of browsers in both partitions on all of my machines is great. I am familiar with it through long use and I am happy with it. The only other browser that I think can hold up a candle to it is SeaMonkey, which is fine and really doesn't seem to get the attention it so richly deserves (again, the different ports run identically on both partitions and both can run TrendMicro HouseCall without a hitch).

Choice is a great thing, and being able to choose the browser that I like is wonderful. If you don't like it, that's fine by me, but I say "Don't complain, you have the choice and no-one is forcing you to use it if you don't want to."

There is too much complaining about pointless things. I have found Opera to be a great browser for about ten years now. You won't hear any complaints from me.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Agreed
by da_Chicken on Sat 19th Sep 2009 02:47 UTC in reply to "Agreed"
da_Chicken Member since:
2006-01-01

I don't understand what people mean, however, when they complain about how it looks. I am using it under KDE3.x.x and KDE 4.3.x as well as XP and it looks exactly how I want it to look - colour-wise, it integrates nicely with both versions of KDE and there is a huge list of skins for different OSes and DEs.

The gtk-qt-engine[1] can make all gtk+2 apps look pretty much the same as your qt4 apps. All gtk+2 and qt3 themes that I've seen so far are incredibly ugly, but qt4 has some nice themes and the gtk-qt-engine helps to de-uglify my gtk+2 apps.

Apparently, the gtk-qt-engine calls qt4 to do the actual drawing of the gtk+2 theme, and that's why it can make all your gtk+2 apps look pretty much like your qt4 apps. But Opera uses a qt3 interface, IIRC. If Opera uses a different theme than all your other apps, then that's another good reason to be unhappy about it (the first reason being that Opera is not Free Software).

[1] http://www.kde-look.org/content/show.php?content=9714

Reply Score: 1

RE: Agreed
by MamiyaOtaru on Sat 19th Sep 2009 07:07 UTC in reply to "Agreed"
MamiyaOtaru Member since:
2005-11-11

I am using it under KDE3.x.x and KDE 4.3.x as well as XP and it looks exactly how I want it to look - colour-wise, it integrates nicely with both versions of KDE and there is a huge list of skins for different OSes and DEs.

This is the problem. It requires a hand tooled theme to fit in. I spent hours making one for KDE 3.1 (keramik+crystal, available here: http://my.opera.com/community/customize/skins/info/?id=1717 ) but the moment I stopped using keramik it didn't match. I still use it, and Opera, but it's hell if you want it to look like the rest of your apps.

Reply Score: 2

RE: hmm
by gtada on Sun 20th Sep 2009 06:11 UTC in reply to "hmm"
gtada Member since:
2005-10-12

"So make it an browser and not 10 halfbacket tools."

Opera to me seems to be one of the best pachaged all in one style solutions I have ever seen, most end users I have shown Opera to tend to agree. Though one thing I do notice is that virually no one uses all the features, but it has something for everyone, and thats not a bad thing per say.


So they built the Edsel of browsers? ;) What one thing do they do better than any other browser?

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: hmm
by kenji on Mon 21st Sep 2009 15:42 UTC in reply to "RE: hmm"
kenji Member since:
2009-04-08

What one thing do they do better than any other browser?

1) Tabs and tab management
2) Built in synchronization
3) Bookmark management
4) Speed, although it is not the fastest browser out there it does remarkably well considering the feature set.
5) Undo and trash can. I don't know of any other browser that has the ability to resurrect (multiple) closed tabs

Reply Score: 1

Focus
by tobyv on Sat 19th Sep 2009 00:19 UTC
tobyv
Member since:
2008-08-25

They should stop trying to be a social networking/napster-killing/webserving superapp, and focus on the fundementals: web browsing.

And change the name. Opera is something rich people do, after they finish eating their scones and flying their aeroplane.

Opera also looks/sounds too much like the word Oprah, something they want to avoid unless they're planning on endorsing books (Ajax for Dummies, Opera book of the Month!)

Reply Score: 1

RE: Focus
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 18:04 UTC in reply to "Focus"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

They should stop trying to be a social networking/napster-killing/webserving superapp, and focus on the fundementals: web browsing.

They realize that browsers are the new application platform. Stuff like Unite will be the future because it allows two-way communication with the browser platform.

And change the name. Opera is something rich people do, after they finish eating their scones and flying their aeroplane.

Yeah, and apples are boring fruits that you eat. Terrible name for a company, "Apple".

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Focus
by tobyv on Tue 22nd Sep 2009 11:34 UTC in reply to "RE: Focus"
tobyv Member since:
2008-08-25

Stuff like Unite will be the future because it allows two-way communication with the browser platform.


Two-way communication with the browser platform? Opera are teh visonary, circa 1998.

Terrible name for a company, "Apple".


An Apple is healthy and delicious. An opera is a pasttime for the rich and elite.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Focus
by wumip on Wed 23rd Sep 2009 07:47 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Focus"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

Two-way communication with the browser platform? Opera are teh visonary, circa 1998.

Two-way communication with any device. The browser is becoming the #1 development platform, and any device can now accept incoming connections and wait for "commands". This is as far from 1998 as you can get. This is connecting everything, and making everything a full member of the web.

You are clearly not a visionary since you only see limitations where visionaries see possibilities. You don't even know what Unite is, or what they are doing with it.

An Apple is healthy and delicious. An opera is a pasttime for the rich and elite.

Apples are boring and all that. Therefore, "Apple" is a bad name. Man, your logic is terrible.

Reply Score: 1

How it looks
by Lennie on Sat 19th Sep 2009 00:21 UTC
Lennie
Member since:
2007-09-22

John Hicks is on it, I'm sure things will change for the better. Actually 10 is already better now then 9, usabilitywise atleast. Also have you folks seen the new mini, for a mobile browser it has a lot of features and it's fairly nimble too.

Edited 2009-09-19 00:22 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: How it looks
by Lennie on Sat 19th Sep 2009 07:43 UTC in reply to "How it looks"
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

Just remembered it's the new Mini that is the cool one:

http://www.opera.com/mini/next/

Reply Score: 2

Change the name
by obsidian on Sat 19th Sep 2009 01:05 UTC
obsidian
Member since:
2007-05-12

Yes, really. I mean, what kind of a name is "Opera" for a software app? Yuck!

I'm serious. Opera has actually painted itself into a corner by giving the browser the name of another "product" (type of music) that has miniscule interest to most people. Indeed, many people actively *hate* opera, myself included.

If *you* wanted your software product to be a roaring success, would you name it "Punk" or "Reggae"? Honestly, they might as well name the thing "Knitting" or "Crochet".

If I hate something, **why would I** look at a product with the same name? It's very simple. It is marketing poison. Why the Opera execs haven't cottoned on to this is anyone's guess.

For goodness sake, rename the thing. I don't care, call it "Rocket" or "Fusion" or whatever.... anything but "Opera".

Edited 2009-09-19 01:12 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: Change the name
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 18:03 UTC in reply to "Change the name "
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

Yes, really. I mean, what kind of a name is "Opera" for a software app? Yuck!

Yeah, just like "Apple". WTF?! APPLE? LOL.

I'm serious. Opera has actually painted itself into a corner by giving the browser the name of another "product" (type of music) that has miniscule interest to most people.

Yeah, same as Apple. Apples? LOL, they are boring.

If I hate something, **why would I** look at a product with the same name? It's very simple. It is marketing poison. Why the Opera execs haven't cottoned on to this is anyone's guess.

Actually, the company is seeing amazing growth in all markets, so apparently the name isn't that big a deal.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Change the name
by strcpy on Mon 21st Sep 2009 18:06 UTC in reply to "RE: Change the name "
strcpy Member since:
2009-05-20

"Yes, really. I mean, what kind of a name is "Opera" for a software app? Yuck!


Yeah, just like "Apple". WTF?! APPLE? LOL.

"

Yeah, just like "GNU/Linux". WTF?! GNU/Linux? LOL.

;)

Reply Score: 2

IE history and rationale for browsers today
by malxau on Sat 19th Sep 2009 02:07 UTC
malxau
Member since:
2005-12-04


The situation in America during the 90's was vastly different though. Many people's experiences of computers, and the web was through corporate desktops that they had no control over. Due to IE being easier to manage in a networked environment, a culture of IE-based infrastructure sprang up, including the dreaded Intranets and IE-only websites.

As a general rule, corporations are slow to adopt any piece of new technology. In the late 90s, IE was evolving at a break-neck pace. It was bundled with updates to the shell, clearly aimed at end users. I don't think it's really true to say that people were "forced" to use IE4/5 due to corporate environments on any scale. They were nice browsers for their time - assuming you had the hardware to run them, which was more likely true in the US than many other places.


It was Firefox (and more-so the grass-roots movement to unseat the stagnant IE and the severe damage to the web that it had caused) that changed that IE-dominant mindshare.

Again, remember timelines. IE entered hibernation with IE6 in 2001. In 2002, Mozilla 1.0 launched, and was largely ineffectual. FireFox 1.0, which was really the first to attack a "stagnant" IE, didn't start until November 2004 - prior to that point, IE was not stagnant.

For a time - a long time - IE was the best browser on the market. This is what helped to maintain it on top of usage for such a long period.


If Opera had had the right marketing at the right time, they could be where Firefox is now.


Opera was the only player in the market trying to monetize the browser. This put it at a serious disadvantage to Mozilla, which transitioned at the time from an AOL-funded venture to a nonprofit. It is hard to get market share with commercial (or ad supported) browsers when competitors have no such restrictions; and it is hard to have a good business without market share.

Opera ended up chasing market share and relying on indirect revenue instead. Its current financials imply that revenue is dominated by search agreements and mobile products; desktop browsers are merely an enabler to better mobile support. (If this sounds familiar, consider why Safari was ported to Windows.)

Which brings us to...

Microsoft (IE) - Ultimate goal, sell Windows; IE required to prevent web commoditization
Apple (Safari) - Ultimate goal, sell iPhones/Macs; Safari required to ensure support for platforms with low market share (both direct, and from web authors)
Opera (Opera) - Ultimate goal, sell phones; Opera on desktop required to provide support for web authors to be compatible with Opera phones
Google (Chrome) - Ultimate goal, sell web services; Chrome required to commoditize web, enable Google to sell internet devices, and to influence direction of web standards/support in its favor
Mozilla (FireFox) - Ultimate goal, ?; FireFox required to continue Mozilla/Netscape legacy...?

Reply Score: 2

wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

Opera ended up chasing market share and relying on indirect revenue instead. Its current financials imply that revenue is dominated by search agreements and mobile products; desktop browsers are merely an enabler to better mobile support.

No, that's wrong. The revenue from the desktop browser is actually growing FASTER than their mobile revenue. It makes up nearly 1/3 of their total revenue. Last quarter, desktop revenue increased by nearly 100%!

The desktop browser definitely brings in a lot of money for them.

Reply Score: 1

Why?
by clintg on Sat 19th Sep 2009 03:45 UTC
clintg
Member since:
2009-09-19

I guess the biggest question for Opera to answer for me and tens of millions of others is, "Why should I use Opera?"

Firefox is working great for me. For people that use the web regularly, it is well-known, whether they use it or not. It works on 99.99% of all sites I go to and is infinitely expandable with extensions. I started using it because they told me that Microsoft won the earlier browser war and then stopped innovating, and I didn't appreciate that. I started using Firefox pre-1.0 to see what new things I could do with my browser. The only other option I knew about was a browser called "Opera" and it cost money, so I never tried it.

Chrome is good and I have installed it. The way Google has answered the "Why?" question is something like: "it is optimized to handle the Google brand of products." Plus it has a few speed optimizations (but I haven't really noticed it working any better than Firefox for me). In the end, the only reason I have downloaded it and used it is because Google gave me a reason to (my office uses Google Apps and I use Gmail).

Safari on Windows, never used it because I haven't heard of a reason I should use it. The ONLY reason to consider it at all is because Apple bugs me to death with it every time there is an ITunes update. When my Mac-using friends use Firefox instead of Safari, that indicates that it probably is not worth even trying.

IE? I use it on the .01% of the sites that don't work with Firefox because the website developer lives in cave that was closed from the outside world in 2002 and doesn't know what Firefox (or any other non-MS browser is).

I do have Opera on my Nokia phone, I have installed it a time or two in Linux and Windows, but I have never found any reason to use it beyond my phone (which I generally only use when the Nokia native browser doesn't render a site properly). I also generally prefer mainstream products instead of niche or products with a smaller market share, since websites, vendors, and various others will eventually officially support my choice -- like they did with Firefox. (Open source is different, for the "free" as in "freedom" reason, I will be willing to sacrifice market share and support -- one reason I would consider an open source Opera).

So Opera, you need to give me a GOOD reason to leave the support and quality of Firefox. You have to sell me on your product!!

Reply Score: 2

What Opera needs to do ...
by WorknMan on Sat 19th Sep 2009 03:48 UTC
WorknMan
Member since:
2005-11-13

What Opera needs to do:

Build an extension system: This is not up for debate. If they don't do this, it'll always be in last place.

Concentrate on the browser: Nobody gives a rat's ass about the email/bit torrent client, the web server, etc. Just concentrate on making your browser work with more sites, esp. AJAX-heavy stuff.

Improve the UI: If you read some of my comments on this site, you'll know that I'm not one to really care about how something looks.... unless it is an abomination like Opera. I think that if you beat the Opera UI to a bloody pulp with an ugly stick for about a year and a half, the end result might actually be an improvement over what it looks like now. Although v10 is not quite as horrible as v9.5, it's still painful to even look at. To whoever was in charge of creating the UI and thought it looked good, you need to seek professional help. Immediately.

Make it more user friendly: Opera is a browser that has nice features, which are usually a pain in the ass to use. For example, to minimize to the system tray (on Windows), they keyboard shortcut is CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+H. Really??? Do you guys think you could've made that any more f**king complicated?
I have a friend who is a diehard Opera user, and when I complain about a particular feature that Firefox has that Opera is missing, he'll usually say something like, "Oh, Opera has that feature! You just have to edit operasomeshitortheother.ini and change this parameter, then move these two other files into your profile directory...." Ummmm, no.

Stop shipping your browser with BROKEN functionality: They broke text-to-speech (Windows version) in v9.5, forcing you to 'refresh' it with every page transition. In v10, it doesn't seem to work at all, and there are threads about it on the Opera forums, which Opera is conveniently ignoring (at least the last time I checked).

In conclusion, Opera is a browser with a lot of potential, but at the moment, it is a complete mess.

Edited 2009-09-19 03:50 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE: What Opera needs to do ...
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 18:01 UTC in reply to "What Opera needs to do ..."
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

Improve the UI: If you read some of my comments on this site, you'll know that I'm not one to really care about how something looks.... unless it is an abomination like Opera.

How is it an "abomination" exactly? The design in Opera 10 is being praised all over the web.

Although v10 is not quite as horrible as v9.5, it's still painful to even look at.

How, exactly?

To whoever was in charge of creating the UI and thought it looked good, you need to seek professional help. Immediately.

Actually, the guy who designed the skin for Opera 10 is Jon Hicks, the guy who designed the Firefox logo! LOL.

In conclusion, Opera is a browser with a lot of potential, but at the moment, it is a complete mess.

Bullsh*t. You are just spewing hyperbole.

Reply Score: 1

Tools its all about tools
by Karitku on Sat 19th Sep 2009 10:12 UTC
Karitku
Member since:
2006-01-12

What Opera should do is get more tools. They already got some by giving HTML5 draft by now all the big players are tearing it apart so they are screwed, so the answer is HTML6. Make a new spec draft, make test for it, make new version that can pass that test and there you have it free advertisement plus lot of tools. It's bit like playing WoW and been first in stuff, most people don't care but there is always some tool to post those videos. Maybe they get pet shark instead of croc next time.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by Nycran
by Nycran on Sat 19th Sep 2009 13:02 UTC
Nycran
Member since:
2006-02-06

To be honest I think Opera is going to struggle. Years ago before Google and Apple has their own browsers, Opera had some clear ways to differentiate through speed and advanced specification compliance. Today the market is very different and the path to differentiate is much more clouded and difficult. Even in the mobile space there's so much more competition. I can't imagine users in any significant quantity installing Opera on an iPhone, an Android device or a Palm Pre.

Sometimes when the big players move in you have to radically change your product offering to stay relevant. This might be one of those times.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by Nycran
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 17:59 UTC in reply to "Comment by Nycran"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

To be honest I think Opera is going to struggle.

LOL. People have been saying that for 15 years, and yet the company continues to thrive. When Firefox entered the market, that was supposed to be the hook on the door for them. Same with Safari. Same with Chrome.

And what happened? Opera's desktop revenue NEARLY DOUBLED last quarter! It's growing massively, with a user base growth of 65% in a year! It's also closing in on 10% market share in Europe, bigger than Safari and Chrome combined!

I can't imagine users in any significant quantity installing Opera on an iPhone, an Android device or a Palm Pre.

That's beucase Opera isn't available for the iPhone or the Palm Pre (Apple and Palm won't let them or something). But it's one of the most popular downloads for Android.

Sometimes when the big players move in you have to radically change your product offering to stay relevant. This might be one of those times.

Nope. Opera is growing massively. Looks like you are just a bit ignorant about how the market works.

Reply Score: 1

Opera is Fine, the way it is !
by scorptig on Sat 19th Sep 2009 13:37 UTC
scorptig
Member since:
2006-03-06

First, Opera is my default browser, has been since 1998. Reasons I like Opera, it's fast, it meets W3C standards. It's easier for me to manage my bookmarks, at last count, I had 13,055 bookmarks. As Webmaster I use Opera to build my web sites, I also check my sites with other browsers. it has built in Mobile Page rendering, very important.
I use Opera in my Ubuntu, OpenSUSE & SimplyMepis, as well I use Opera in Windows using VirtualBox.
Anyone out there, try it first, keep it handy, in time it will grow on you. Note I have no issues with Flash or Videos, in 64 Bit environment. Great browser. Glad it's there. It's also very quick to open, Firefox at this point and time, takes up to 10 seconds to open, Opera takes 3 or 4 seconds to open.

Reply Score: 1

Be more opened to "broken" sites
by leo_ on Sat 19th Sep 2009 17:42 UTC
leo_
Member since:
2007-09-04

I love Opera. I use it daily, since version 6.x and despite newer and faster browsers being available, I still use it.

But for Opera to gain some market share, you can do as much advertising as you want, it won't work. Opera needs to work on *more* websites.

*lots* of *popular* websites/applications simply don't work, or are buggy on Opera, while they happily run on Firefox, Chrome, or even Safari.

So unless this is fixed, Opera can't gain market share: as much as I'd like to recommend Opera to my friends, family,.. I can't, because they are average users, and Opera isn't compatible enough for them.

Just random programs that fail or are buggy on Opera:

- Facebook (problems with the chat, and some applications),
- RTL.fr (famous french radio: the live player, which is flash-based + JS simply doesn't work on Opera)
- etc...

Reply Score: 1

RE: Be more opened to "broken" sites
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 17:56 UTC in reply to "Be more opened to "broken" sites"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

*lots* of *popular* websites/applications simply don't work, or are buggy on Opera, while they happily run on Firefox, Chrome, or even Safari.

Opera works on more sites than Chrome and Safari. But Firefox works on more sites than all of them because sites are being designed to work in Firefox. Most site problems in Opera are because of browser sniffing anyway.

Reply Score: 1

Mobile Market
by milatchi on Sat 19th Sep 2009 18:07 UTC
milatchi
Member since:
2005-08-29

Opera has lost the Desktop Market. There are already 3 major browsers (Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Safari) and Chrome has jumped in too.
If I were Opera I would focus on trying to dominate the Mobile and Video Game console Web Browser markets. So far Safari on the iPhone is the only really decent browser from an ease-of-use perspective on the Mobile platform. Truthfully, IE Mobile is shit to use, RIM's browser is half-assed, and everyone's else's are just plain bad.
If I were Opera that's where I'd try to establish my stronghold before someone else does.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Mobile Market
by 3rdalbum on Sun 20th Sep 2009 03:41 UTC in reply to "Mobile Market"
3rdalbum Member since:
2008-05-26

Opera has lost the Desktop Market. There are already 3 major browsers (Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Safari) and Chrome has jumped in too.
If I were Opera I would focus on trying to dominate the Mobile and Video Game console Web Browser markets.


Really? When I discovered Opera Link, I made Opera my main web browser on all my computers and devices that could handle it.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Mobile Market
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 17:55 UTC in reply to "Mobile Market"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

Opera has lost the Desktop Market. There are already 3 major browsers (Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Safari) and Chrome has jumped in too.

If Opera has "lost", then how come it has nearly 10% market share in Europe (more than Safari and Chrome combined), and how come their desktop user base has grown by 65% in the last year? And if they have lost, how come their desktop revenue increased by 100% last quarter?

Reply Score: 1

I use Opera
by strcpy on Sat 19th Sep 2009 18:40 UTC
strcpy
Member since:
2009-05-20

I use Opera on my netbook, the main reason being that the performance of Firefox has long been intolerable with any low-cost, old or netbook-like computer. Opera on the other hand is reasonably fast.

But what should Opera do? Difficult question because maybe it is just that there are no more money to be made from browsers alone. Perhaps they should focus on some specialized (embedded, phone, etc.) markets.

Edited 2009-09-19 18:42 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Easing the switch
by Andre Siegel on Sun 20th Sep 2009 04:17 UTC
Andre Siegel
Member since:
2005-08-12

In order to increase the adoption of its browser on the desktop, I strongly believe that Opera Software should bundle skins/UI themes that strongly resemble Internet Explorer as well as Firefox, both being the two most popular web browsers these days, and offer them as configuration options during the installation process. (What user interface theme would you like to use? Opera default - IE-inspired theme - Firefox-inspired theme)

I understand that Opera Software put great effort into developing their default user interface and aim to use it as a means to differentiate its browser from the rest. So, my suggestion my seem like heresy to people who are already fans of the browser and / or are working for Opera.

However, being required to re-learn certain usage patterns is in fact a barrier for quite a number of users that provents Opera from growing its market share further. To experienced users, the user interface differences may seem minor, but not everyone is a seasoned computer user. If you can choose between a fast browser that requires you to relearn a few things and a noticeably less fast browser that works exactly you as you would expect, the outcome is not always as clear as the average OSnews.com reader might think.

*Convenience* is a major driver of user adoption. Having the option to manually download and install a third-party skin that resembles your previous web browser is really not quite the same as being offered a seamless transition to the Opera browser after installing the default software package.

Reply Score: 2

Agree and disagree
by deathshadow on Sun 20th Sep 2009 11:38 UTC
deathshadow
Member since:
2005-07-12

As someone who's used Opera as their primary browser since the release of 8.5, I both agree and disagree with a lot of what's been said here.

In terms of features, innovation, and little details Opera is more complete and feels more robust to me than any other browser. It's lean, fast, and doesn't hog memory like certain other browsers we could mention. I've reached the point where the built in functionality in Opera leaves me feeling like I'm taking a trip with Mr. Peabody every time I'm stuck using any other browser... It's certainly been more stable for me than Firefox ever was (which has only upgraded from 'steaming pile of ****' to 'acceptable' with the release of 3.5)

BUT

Opera wouldn't know marketing - in particular to the North American audience - from the hole in their ass. When non-profits like Mozilla can afford TV spots and magazine glossies, Opera's throwing money away on a billboard in Redmond and going on the offensive against Microsoft at every opportunity not only makes them look childish, it does nothing of value in terms of promoting their company - It's not as obvious as "Bork Bork Bork", but it really is the same infantile behavior. (I dunno, does that rah-rah fight the power asshattery fly better in Europe?)

To see how bad their idea of marketing is, we can use the wayback machine to pull up perhaps the most offensive advertising attempt ever done for a browser.
http://web.archive.org/web/20060702202255/http://opera.com/

What we have there is a oriental characature, a mob boss, some homeless lady, a cross dresser, a eurotrash reject from Devo (or is that the old SNL Sprockets?), and some skate-kid stoner ****... Worse, they put the buck tooth unwashed bag lady in the damned installer. Whoever thought that was a good marketing campaign is in serious need of a brick upside the head. Round it off with a covetous jew, a black man holding a watermelon and fried chicken, and a catholic priest holding a small child and they'd have the superfecta of offensiveness.

Marketing is NOT Opera's strong point. Nor is leveraging the companies they allow to use the engine... It's on the DS, it's on the Wii, it's on a bunch of phones and can be installed on a bunch more, but their name is hidden/not mentioned/nowhere to be found.

As pointed out though, the name itself just doesn't fly. Opera - you think stodgy old farts listening to tone deaf caterwauling in languages they don't even understand, likely followed by a late meal consisting of bait served as a "delicacy". (and like most 'delicacies' it's more dumpster scraps than real food)

A lot of the 'complaints' about Opera though I don't get - like the UI itself from a usability standpoint. It has what, three more buttons than other browsers? Big deal. "Too technical?!?" - I don't get that complaint...

What I think is REALLY setting people 'off' is the non-native looking skin. I'll be honest, I HATE programs that don't use native UI chrome - across the board. HATE IT. There is NO reason they couldn't put a bit more effort into making the damned thing LOOK more like the native OS, and make the damned default skin the native one too. First thing I do under windows is switch appearance to "Windows Native", and then make a few tweaks to the .ini file for that to pack things a wee bit closer together. It's not the controls, or their placement or anything else - it's the non-native colors, gradients and icons that people dislike.

Edited 2009-09-20 11:40 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE: Agree and disagree
by WereCatf on Sun 20th Sep 2009 12:34 UTC in reply to "Agree and disagree"
WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

http://web.archive.org/web/20060702202255/http://opera.com/

What we have there is a oriental characature, a mob boss, some homeless lady, a cross dresser, a eurotrash reject from Devo (or is that the old SNL Sprockets?), and some skate-kid stoner ****..


It took me several minutes to figure out who you meant with "a cross dresser", but then I thought that you probably mean the guy on the right. I still don't know you is the homeless lady though. They all look perfectly normal to me which makes me wonder how "normal people" look in your eyes.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Agree and disagree
by deathshadow on Sun 20th Sep 2009 23:03 UTC in reply to "RE: Agree and disagree"
deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

From left to right, the overblown oriental caricature, the cross dresser (that is NOT a woman), the bag lady (who just LOOKS like she needs a shower), the mob boss, Ditr from Sprockets, and the dirty beach bum stoner.

... and if those look like 'normal' people to you... Where are you from?

Especially the bag lady - was worse when they put her in the installer as it popped up and people recoiled in horror.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Agree and disagree
by WereCatf on Sun 20th Sep 2009 23:30 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Agree and disagree"
WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

the cross dresser (that is NOT a woman),

Looks female to me.

.. and if those look like 'normal' people to you... Where are you from?

The real world. Go and take a look sometime. You'd probably assume all kinds of totally bogus things about me too just based on my looks since you seem to be quick to judge people and your view of "normal" is pretty darn limited.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Agree and disagree
by nt_jerkface on Mon 21st Sep 2009 01:18 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Agree and disagree"
nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

Do you live in Hollywood? That has to be the worst tech ad I have ever seen.

The guy on the right is wearing lipstick and female attire.

There is a douchebag who looks like he wants to live in the matrix.

A mob boss from a cheesy movie.

A chick with a beehive haircut.

I like how the cross dresser is giving you the gun finger. Yea....ok dude.

This is supposed to make me want to download an alternative browser? Funny.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Agree and disagree
by nt_jerkface on Mon 21st Sep 2009 01:22 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Agree and disagree"
nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

She's in a recent installer? I may have to check it out for the awfulness.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Agree and disagree
by deathshadow on Mon 21st Sep 2009 02:17 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Agree and disagree"
deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

She's in a recent installer? I may have to check it out for the awfulness.

Opera 9.0, so not THAT recent. They buried the 'release party' people sometime between 9.0 and 9.2, replacing them with two pretty little jailbait numbers before deciding against having pictures of people in the installer.

This pic was taken from the 9.0 installer, featuring the cross-dresser and the bag lady.
http://battletech.hopto.org/images/opera_wierdness.jpg

Reply Score: 2

RE: Agree and disagree
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 17:54 UTC in reply to "Agree and disagree"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

When non-profits like Mozilla can afford TV spots and magazine glossies

That's because Mozilla has huge corporations pumping money into them. Opera doesn't have that kind of money.

To see how bad their idea of marketing is, we can use the wayback machine to pull up perhaps the most offensive advertising attempt ever done for a browser.
http://web.archive.org/web/20060702202255/http://opera.com/

That's OFFENSIVE? Wow, you really need a thicker skin.

It's on the DS, it's on the Wii, it's on a bunch of phones and can be installed on a bunch more, but their name is hidden/not mentioned/nowhere to be found.

So what? It isn't Opera's business to order their PAYING CUSTOMERS to promote them. BTW, Opera IS displayed on the DS and Wii.

As pointed out though, the name itself just doesn't fly. Opera - you think stodgy old farts listening to tone deaf caterwauling in languages they don't even understand

Yeah, just like apples are a fruit. How boring and childish! Apple! LOL.

Reply Score: 1

Why would I use Opera?
by hughesjr on Sun 20th Sep 2009 12:23 UTC
hughesjr
Member since:
2006-10-29

Every OS out there comes with their own web browser. As the article said, unless they are doing something WRONG, people with use that.

Some people will, based on Ideals, choose an open source browser like Firefox to replace their proprietary browser since they believe that open source software is better.

Since Opera is neither open source or included as the default browser in an OS, I don't see how they will grow unless they are leaps and bounds above the rest (which they do not seem to be).

I downloaded and tried Opera on CentOS 5 specifically because of this article. It worked OK, it looks OK, etc. It does not seem to offer me any reason to shift from my "Open Source" Firefox though. I will try use it for a week and see if I can find a reason I should switch.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Why would I use Opera?
by deathshadow on Sun 20th Sep 2009 23:41 UTC in reply to "Why would I use Opera?"
deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

Well, lemme run down some of the features it does that make me use it as my primary on all systems.

Opera Link - I can install opera anywhere and instantly have access to all my bookmarks and settings from one unified online location.

Flip navigation - hold the left button, click the right one, you get forward. Hold the right, click the left one, you get back. I wish every application worked that way.

Favicon buttons - rather than the big fat ugly 'personal toolbar' crap I turn that off, and drag and drop favicons onto the address bar for my most frequently accessed sites.

Custom buttons - I have several custom buttons installed, including launchers for legacy versions of IE, FF, Safari and chrome which makes cross-browser testing of websites easier. Being a web developer it just makes life easier - Another change I make is turning off the close button on each tab, and adding to the top of my tab bar the "close current tab and go to previous" and "close current tab and go to next" buttons - making navigating tabs while closing them a LOT easier.

http://operawiki.info/CustomButtons

Ability to show tabs in portrait left or right - With websites still designing for narrow screen widths and sitting here at a 1920 widescreen, it's nice to get more height and more useful tabs by moving the tabs to one side of the display as a column. It makes it easier to tell what tab is what since the titles aren't chopped off as much. You turn on the new thumbnail feature and it's even more useful. It's also nice to do on netbooks since they too are really pressed for vertical space. I run my win7 taskbar on the right and my opera tabs on the left, status bar off, personal bar off.

The wand and notes - The notes feature, basically an indexed searchable clipboard you can use to quickly fill out forms is a great feature, and being able to put all my usernames and passwords behind a single password in the wand is great too.

... and there's speed dial, which used for the keyboard shortcuts (ctrl 1-9) is great for pulling up reference pages. (WDG, Sitepoint's CSS references, etc)

Built in torrent client - while on my workstation I use uTorrent, every now and then on my laptop I want a small file and not having to go install some other software is great.

Dragonfly - the first time Opera ever copied a major feature, Dragonfly started out as a pale copy of Firebug, but has grown into a more robust package that can do many things Firebug can't... Which is why when working with other people's code I end up using BOTH dragonfly and firebug.

undocking tabs - while chrome and safari can do this, Opera allowed you to do it before konqueror was a twinkle in a floss fanboy's eye. Being a multiple display user, being able to simply drag a tab out of the program window and into it's own is a must-have.

Robust download manager - Every other browser I've used the download manager is usually this half-assed train wreck. IE is obviously the worst in this department, but FF is no winner either opening it in a separate window, routing every damned save even images you are already viewing through it - which was 90% of where the 1.x branch seemed to have stability issues in the first place.

Now I realize, most everything I've said is available in one form or another in Firefox using extensions, but given how stable FF extensions are (not), the increase in memory footprint, that almost every FF extension has multiple security holes (since well over half the secunia advisories the past three years are for FF extensions and not FF itself) - it's nice to have everything in one small fast efficient package.

Which is why the people who call Opera 'bloated' need to GAFC, given it has built in what would take a dozen or so FF extensions to accomplish... all for a distro that's three fourths the size of firefox and half the memory footprint by the time you add all those extensions.

-- edit --

In a way, I wonder if that's also amongst it's problems... It's too feature rich, and most people don't take the time to learn what it can do that other browsers can't.

Edited 2009-09-20 23:47 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Opera should sell their a55 already...
by juvenile4909 on Sun 20th Sep 2009 15:14 UTC
juvenile4909
Member since:
2007-08-04

At this point their reputation is the sux and noone will use it. Any press is good press is a lie. Opera remind me of the guy that got injured and really thought he can come back and compete for a starting position. Seriously, this is how it's played. Make a better software, grow a large community and get back in the game. I have yet to understand why this company is having so many issues if you got the ppl build some damned software like everyone. What is they problem?

Reply Score: 1

wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

At this point their reputation is the sux and noone will use it.

What on earth are you talking about? How did their desktop user base grow by 65% in the last year then? How is it the dominant mobile browser then?

Opera remind me of the guy that got injured and really thought he can come back and compete for a starting position.

Actually, it's Microsoft which cheated to win, and now the judges are disqualifying Microsoft for breaking the rules.

Reply Score: 1

???
by cefarix on Sun 20th Sep 2009 22:39 UTC
cefarix
Member since:
2006-03-18

What does this have to do with operating systems? Why is this on the front page? Wtf?

Reply Score: 1

Opera
by invader zim on Mon 21st Sep 2009 03:13 UTC
invader zim
Member since:
2009-09-08

Opera has an interface that is different from all other browsers. When new people try it its like "wow why do they do that!?!". The people that like Opera love the interface and can't live without it and everybody else is disgusted by it.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Opera
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 17:46 UTC in reply to "Opera"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

Opera has an interface that is different from all other browsers. When new people try it its like "wow why do they do that!?!". The people that like Opera love the interface and can't live without it and everybody else is disgusted by it.

Nonsense. Opera looks just like any other browser.

If you want to talk about "different", look at Chrome. Now THAT's different.

You are clearly deluded.

Reply Score: 1

Why help a proprietary company?
by clintg on Mon 21st Sep 2009 05:13 UTC
clintg
Member since:
2009-09-19

Why do I want to help a proprietary company with a mediocre product gain market share?! I'll be glad to help push an open source product that has neat features, but why a proprietary company? I can't get any sense of why I would want to push them into any prominence when it would only help their bottom-line.

I push Linux (non-commercial versions), Firefox, OpenOffice, etc. to try to help others see the value of free and very good products. But why Opera?

Reply Score: 1

RE: Why help a proprietary company?
by strcpy on Mon 21st Sep 2009 05:34 UTC in reply to "Why help a proprietary company?"
strcpy Member since:
2009-05-20

Perhaps because this "proprietary" is not such a hellhound that certain parties make it out to be?

Perhaps because not all are crazy about pushing (mediocre) Linux?

Perhaps because some people like Opera?

Reply Score: 2

sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

Perhaps because this "proprietary" is not such a hellhound that certain parties make it out to be?
...
Perhaps because some people like Opera?

Just don't expect any gratitude. If Opera had IE's market share Opera Software wouldn't be so shy as Microsoft has been. They'd be pushing for laws in various countries to forbid the use of dangerous, nonstandard, non-Opera browsers. Opera Software and its cronies are nothing if not flagrantly presumptuous in their marketing ambitions.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Why help a proprietary company?
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 17:46 UTC in reply to "Why help a proprietary company?"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

Why do I want to help a proprietary company with a mediocre product gain market share?!

Mediocre? That's just laughable.

I'll be glad to help push an open source product that has neat features, but why a proprietary company?

Ah, now I understand. You are irrational, and hate anything proprietary. So even when proprietary is better than FOSS, you will claim that it's "mediocre" to justify to yourself why you use a FOSS product that's crappier.

I can't get any sense of why I would want to push them into any prominence when it would only help their bottom-line.

In Opera's case, they have been spending huge amounts of money on promoting and open web and open standards.

Reply Score: 1

clintg Member since:
2009-09-19

"Why do I want to help a proprietary company with a mediocre product gain market share?!

Mediocre? That's just laughable.
"

"Mediocre" was used for effect. Opera is a good product, but not "great". The point is that Opera isn't something that will change the way we work on the web. When Firefox came out, it was the new product that brought much needed innovation to the masses of users (something Opera possibly could have done at the time if it had been completely free). So no, Opera isn't mediocre, but it is not something that is currently so revolutionary that I would want to say, "you've got to try this!"

"I'll be glad to help push an open source product that has neat features, but why a proprietary company?

Ah, now I understand. You are irrational, and hate anything proprietary. So even when proprietary is better than FOSS, you will claim that it's "mediocre" to justify to yourself why you use a FOSS product that's crappier.
"

I am far from irrational, you don't even know me! I use proprietary products quite regularly, in fact, I voluntarily purchased and use Windows Vista Business Edition on my laptop that came with no operating system. I even did this when Ubuntu installed perfectly fine and worked without any tweaking. I am in business and I use and buy what I need. However, my argument about Opera is that when I have proprietary and open source applications that work well, what advantage does Opera provide that makes me want to use and push it as another proprietary product. If they were cutting-edge, providing things I needed and nobody else did, I would push them, proprietary or not (I know there may be some "cutting edge" features in Opera, but not many that I cannot find a Firefox extension for). But yes, I will push open source options that are not as good at times, because I would like to see some of the products I voluntarily use have a larger market share, and not die. But, not all open source products are worthy of that push for me, it just depends on the app and need.

"I can't get any sense of why I would want to push them into any prominence when it would only help their bottom-line.

In Opera's case, they have been spending huge amounts of money on promoting and open web and open standards.
"

I appreciate that from them! I believe it was them that has pushed the EU to consider action against MS on their bundling of the browser, and again, I appreciate that. However, if they want to gain market share, then they probably need to work on: compatibility with unofficial standards, make their browser extensible, re-brand their browser as something that makes people want to move to their product over other good options, and create a community that loves them and will build the groundswell effect they need. I don't know how they should do all this, but the net effect is, people don't know who they are and it is going to be more and more difficult to compete against the other products on the market.

Edited 2009-09-22 09:59 UTC

Reply Score: 1

wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

Opera is a good product, but not "great". The point is that Opera isn't something that will change the way we work on the web.

It already has. Popup blocking, the search field, MDI, etc. All Opera inventions. Opera has basically defined the modern browsing.

When Firefox came out, it was the new product that brought much needed innovation to the masses of users (something Opera possibly could have done at the time if it had been completely free).

What innovation?

However, if they want to gain market share, then they probably need to work on: compatibility with unofficial standards

They have been working on this forever. That Opera somehow refuses to render non-standrad code is a MYTH. Opera was built from the ground up for commpatibility.

The problem today isn't Opera. It's browser sniffing. Mask as Firefox, and all those sites will "magically" start working.

re-brand their browser as something that makes people want to move to their product

That's utterly pointless. Opera is already a big brand, especially on mobile phones. They have 40-50 million desktop users and growing (65% last year).

Reply Score: 1

became free software
by internauta_libre on Mon 21st Sep 2009 11:45 UTC
internauta_libre
Member since:
2009-09-21

What should Operada do?

It should become free software/open source, build a community, and let the community improve it

It's simply: there are better browsers out there. like Firefox, Konqueror, Epiphany, now even Google Chromium, and they are free software.

Proprietary software just sucks. The opera guys can make a wonderful marketing campaign, but this will never be enough. The open source guys just do a better software.

Reply Score: 1

RE: became free software
by zlynx on Mon 21st Sep 2009 13:51 UTC in reply to "became free software"
zlynx Member since:
2005-07-20

Being open source would not help them. Why would any programmers want to work on it?

OpenSolaris is open source, but I do not see large numbers of people switching from Linux to OpenSolaris or to the GNU Hurd.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: became free software
by nt_jerkface on Mon 21st Sep 2009 21:04 UTC in reply to "RE: became free software"
nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

Sun went broke waiting for this mythical source of endless community programmers to show up and help turn the company around.

The overwhelming majority of commits to opensolaris and openoffice have been from Sun employees.

Have a look at this chart showing commit affiliations:
http://www.gnome.org/~michael/images/2008-09-29-overall.png

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: became free software
by wumip on Mon 21st Sep 2009 21:09 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: became free software"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

The overwhelming majority of commits to opensolaris and openoffice have been from Sun employees.

Same with Firefox. Just about all code accepted into Firefox is from Mozilla employees (or Google employees). The mythical army of voluntary programmers hacking together a better product is just that - a myth.

Reply Score: 1

RE: became free software
by nt_jerkface on Mon 21st Sep 2009 21:09 UTC in reply to "became free software"
nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

So if Chrome was released as closed source it would suck? Even though the same programmers would have created it?

Are you aware that Firefox has a staff of full time programmers?

Paint.net went closed source recently, so does the quality now suck? Most people prefer it to the gimp, but the gimp is still open source, right?

Reply Score: 1

Comment by Gorapa
by Gorapa on Mon 21st Sep 2009 16:00 UTC
Gorapa
Member since:
2006-01-01

This has probably already been brought up, but they should update their port for BeOS/Haiku now that the alpha has been released.

Reply Score: 1

Why I like opera
by lackS on Tue 22nd Sep 2009 07:03 UTC
lackS
Member since:
2009-09-22

Hi all,

I'm reading OSnews for quite some time now, but never wrote any comments -- until now, when it's up for my favourite browser.

First of all (and already said by others), Opera is:
- free-as-in-beer-software (free download, no ads, free usage, but closed source)
- stuffed with a lot of additional features (mail client, bittorrent client, widget engine).
- not yet equipped with a web server ("Opera Unite", rumors say it becomes part of the next stable version).

I use Opera on both Windows and Linux, and I'm quite happy with it for several reasons. I use it for browsing only, so I miss quite some of its functionality; I'll later explain why. If Opera fails (examples following), I use Firefox at home and work as well as Internet Explorer at work.
Opera has been my default browser since Version 7.0 (back in 2003) and fulfilled my requirements towards a browser.

Things I like about Opera:
- Ability to drive it by keyboard. I'm a keyboard addict, and this is by far better than with any other browser I've been using so far.
- Speed. The JS engine may not be the fastest, but JS-intense pages (e.g. facebook) don't render slower on opera than firefox here. The HTML engine is just damn fast. May not be chrome's performance, but fits good enough for me.
- Standards compliance. I believe the web should be a place where everybody holds to standards, and the user isn't forced to use a specific browser X to view contents, but can instead freely choose. This might be too idealistic for somebody else, but hey, somebody has to start if you ever want to reach a goal. Firefox did also good work forcing Microsoft to make IE more standards compliant, but Opera does slightly better in my opinion.
- Position preserving. When flipping pages back and forth, Opera remembers your scrolling position on every site. This is even restored after closing and reopening the browser. Incredibly time-saving if you just want to look something up from three pages ago, and it's right there without having to scroll to the according position again. Firefox definitely has its problems here.
- Caching. I like the quite fast back and forth flipping, because Opera is almost only loading its cache. If this doesn't fit anymore, you can simply refresh the page and you're done.
- Browser masking. Opera can identify itself to specific websites as Firefox or Internet Explorer. This is very useful especially on "Go away, you don't use IE"-sites.
- Configuration. Type opera:config into a browser window and you'll see it's config. It has a search for config items which usually serves you what you want in very little time. No more menu-searching to find something, just type it and you're presented with the option you want. The old-style menus are of course still there, so you don't have to use opera:config.

Things I miss:
- AdBlock. This is a clear win for firefox. Opera's ad-blocking is fairly ok, but clearly beaten by AdBlock.

I don't use the mail client because I'm used to having my "fat" client (claws mail) sitting here, though M2 (Opera's built-in mail client) provides an interesting approach to organising E-Mail.
The bittorrent client just sucks, that's right -- there are a lot of other alternatives out there, and most of them perform better than Opera's built-in one does.

I don't care much for things like UI, because I don't want to stare at a browser but actually use it. A GUI is shiny or ugly or whatever the first two weeks you use it, but afterwards, you get used to it and don't care much about it anyway. Don't get me wrong, I like Opera's UI, but I don't care about it much.

In general: I know that's it possible to bring most or even all of this functionality into firefox by addons, but I never understood why I should invest time into finding and installing addons when Opera is giving me all of that by default and at the size of a barebone firefox installation.

I don't say it's perfect, it's just the browser that fits my needs better than other browsers do.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Why I like opera
by wumip on Wed 23rd Sep 2009 07:42 UTC in reply to "Why I like opera"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

[q]Things I miss:
- AdBlock. This is a clear win for firefox. Opera's ad-blocking is fairly ok, but clearly beaten by AdBlock.[/quote]
http://my.opera.com/Tamil/blog/ad-block
http://operawiki.info/OperaAdblock
http://www.fanboy.co.nz/adblock/opera/

Reply Score: 1