Bruce Lawson’s personal site

Opera 10

Today saw the first major release Opera since I’ve worked there, when Opera released version 10. As Molly says,

Opera 10 marks a new time for our browser, with its sexy new UI, cherry-red restyled “O” logo, standards support including many advanced features not found elsewhere, and improved developer tools. Not only that, but to coin a silly Carpenter’s song…”we’ve only just begun.”

What is particularly exciting for me is the amount of features it offers for the consumer. (There’s lots for developers, like Web Fonts, increased standards support and an enhanced Opera Dragonfly debugging tool.)

Opera has always had a reputation of being a browser for the “power user” as it’s so customisable, but that can often be off-putting for non-geeky customers (I’m thinking of my Dad here).

So Opera 10 adds spell-checking and auto-updates, as well as a much sleeker user interface in which you can move the tabs where you want them by hovering over the tabs, right clicking and choosing “Tab bar placement” (see my 45 second amateur YouTube tutorial).

Speed dial is now easily customisable (before you had to edit a config file—never much fun for a user) and you can add a background image too.

These make all the pre-existing features (sessions, mouse gestures, excellent keyboard support) all the more usable to the mass market.

One feature outshines all the others, though, for people using Opera 10 desktop outside of the industrialised world (or in crowded WiFi hotspots), and that is Opera Turbo. This speeds up browsing dramatically over slow connections, by compressing images —on the assumption that mostly you want to read the content rather than look at the pictures; if picture quality is important, you just turn Turbo off. (This works on slow connections, when compressing the images is faster than sending them down a slow line. On broadband, it’s faster to send them down the line than it is to compress them on a proxy.)

I’m proud to see this release, which strives to bring an excellent browsing experience to all, regardless of geography or infrastructure.

But enough seriousness. Check out this fun video about Norwegians’ love for compression and flat-packing:

12 Responses to “ Opera 10 ”

Comment by Dominykas

It’s funny, how, in opposition to what you say, I always thought that Opera is actually easier to use than Firefox, because of the great care taken in the UI, because of being a pioneer in great stuff like tabs, mouse gestures, speed dial and small featurettes like [Right Click] -> [Open with] -> [another browser] – features you don’t get in, say, Firefox, without downloading a plugin.

In fact, I was too lazy to reconfigure some 9.x version after a clean install (instead of upgrade) and now I’m just absolutelly happy with default settings. Now “power user” skills needed!

Comment by Jen

Oh wow, I love the new tab options. This is perhaps a silly question but how do you make the arrow highlighted on your videos? I’ve been considering doing similar types of “how to” videos and I realized having the arrow highlighted would be helpful.

Comment by Mariusz Nowak

The main I’m relating to is:


will throw INDEX SIZE EXCEPTION while it should return null

It breaks common loop constructs like

while (el = els.item(++i))

Unfortunately it can’t be easily patched as we don’t have access to StaticNodeList thus we can’t overwrite StaticNodeList.prototype.item (it’s another weird thing – we have access to NodeList and it’s prototope but StaticNodeList is not visible to us).
The best patch I’ve come to is to overwrite HTMLElement & HTMLDocument prototype.querySelectorAll.

Thanks 🙂

Comment by karthik

opera 10 is awesom i hope that opera will get the appreciation and support that it deserves.

opera is innovative and leads the race unfortunately since it does not have fight with microsoft so nobody gives notice to it like firefox.

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