In trying to keep with the Opera wishlist idea that was started in July 2007, I’d like to list 5 things that I would like to see completed or implemented (some for Windows and Mac as well) by the time Opera 10.5x final is reached for Linux. There’s no better time to do this then now, with the hint of an Opera 10.53 Beta 1 on the FTP servers for Linux!
- Improved implementation of dragging tabs around. I’m glad to see that the Opera 10.5x interface is becoming a little more stylish and slick, but some aspects seem to be left unfinished. The one I’m talking about is when you drag a tab out of the tab bar and you’re suddenly dragging an unpolished chunk from the tab bar:
Dragging this tab back into the tab bar results in a fall-back to the old way that Opera handled moving tabs and you now see an arrow insertion point rather than a smooth transition of the tab falling into the tab bar and others making room for it…as Google Chrome does.
If Opera can show a chunk of the tab bar to represent the fact that you’re about to detach it then they should also be able to make it more pleasing to look at as Google Chrome has done. I suggest that rather than displaying what you see in the image above, they show the new tab bar thumbnail next to the cursor when its been dragged out of a window:
Then the transition to moving the tab into a tab bar again should be polished so the entire process is aesthetically pleasing to see.
- Merge the tab bar and title bar. This has been done in Windows for XP, Vista and 7 in Opera 10.5x thus far and would carry over very nicely to the Unix/Linux platform as well! I mentioned this a while back, but it still deserves a place in my wishlist.
- More complete Opera Link support. I think we all expected more settings to be synchronized via Opera Link when it was first introduced. Unfortunately, though, we’ve seen only stability and maintenance updates for the same feature set while other browser venders (Google and Mozilla) are now beginning to grow close to releasing similar and more complete solutions.
I have been looking forward to being able to synchronize my complete “Preferences” settings (including opera:config), mail/chat/feed accounts (just the account information…excluding locally stored mail), as well as my stored passwords for a very long time and I know that I’m not alone.
It would also be very nice if Opera implemented Opera Link as a user sign-in to show that users bookmarks and settings instead of merging with data that is already stored. I’ve been wanting this “messenger” style support for a while now and it looks like Mozilla Firefox could already implement this with Weave and a built-in Account Manager.
- Vastly improved interface for Dragonfly. In its current form, Dragonfly is very usable and offers a great number of features. The down side to Dragonfly, however, is one of inconsistency. It would be much easier to use if the interface matched Opera’s own interface much more closely.
- Generic support for Linux notification libraries using the FreeDesktop.org standard (as mentioned here) so file transfers and other notifications become more integrated with the system in use:
Now lets see what kind of beneficial wishlists YOU can come up with (for Windows, Mac and/or Linux)! Post a link to your “top 5 wishlist” in the comments below!
Now that Opera 10.10 Beta 1 is out, the Desktop Team has calmed down a bit with fresh snapshot releases. I take this as a sign that Opera 10.10 Final is very near. On that note, I decided to throw together a list of changes I would like to see greeting us on the road to the next big release.
There is no particular order to the following wishlist items, but they are a bit rambled on…
- Download Opera updates via BitTorrent technology that is already present in Opera to take the bulk of the stress off of servers and mirrors for those already running Opera.
- Allow Opera to download efficient updates. Instead of downloading the entire installer each time, why can’t Opera download the changes and apply them to the present installation (updating the version of course)? This could dramatically improve the length of time it takes to update Opera, especially on slow connections.
- Remove the Unite Applications that are installed by default with Opera and download them when they are needed. I extracted the classic installer for Opera 10.10 Beta only to find that the Unite Applications that are installed by default consume approximately 2.12mb, thus dramatically increasing the installer download size! Why couldn’t these be installed via the Internet when the user decides to activate Opera Unite?
- [done] Install Opera with an Operating System focused skin by default. Opera for Mac is already installed with a tweaked default skin, but what about the rest of us? The current default skin is a major improvement over skins in the past, but on Windows 7 it really doesn’t fit the feel. This is one reason that a lot of people stray away from Opera.
- Update skins, widgets, unite applications, userjs, usercss, etc. Why has a proper updating system not been put into place to alert you of a skin update? Or to alert you that your favorite widget just got updated and you’re using one that’s a year old? It seems that this may happen with Opera Unite eventually, but what about the content that we’ve used loyally for years?
- Better memory usage and garbage collecting. If you’ve ever opened several tabs (we’ll say 50+) and worked your way through most while closing them as you go, then you know that Opera’s memory footprint can grow madly. One thing you might have assumed, but not been aware of is that when you close these tabs and empty the trash…there is no release of all of that memory that Opera just claimed. While many loyal Opera fans will tell you that Opera gives this memory back if it’s “really” needed, it shouldn’t just hang onto it in the first place. We all want an optimized application, shouldn’t that be try for memory usage as well?
- Opera Dragonfly updates! I remember when Opera Dragonfly updates were fairly often and sometimes significant changes would appear even between snapshot updates! Opera Dragonfly has slipped out of the spotlight due to limitations on updates that depend on Core updates in Opera itself. With or without these limitations, I’m sure we would all like to see how Dragonfly is improving. One improvement I’d like to see (that has already been mentioned by @hicksdesign) is UI integration with the rest of Opera and the current skin. Other than that, editing of style sheets in entirety on the fly is one of my most craved updates. A ruler or grid would be nice as well as not having to reload the page before editing it. Also, I’d like to have Opera Dragonfly open on one page while not seeing it on every page that I switch to.
- UserJS on HTTPS prompts at startup are driving me insane! Why Opera hasn’t implemented an option to ignore this prompt is beyond me. It could easily be configurable via opera:config, but continues to annoy the users who are well aware of what they are doing in the first place.
- More options synchronized via Opera Link. Also, why can we finally have a completed web front-end to Opera Link? I’m tired of not having passwords stored in the Wand for one computer that I know are saved on another. Shouldn’t all of these settings be synchronized by now? Opera Link (it seems like) was released ages ago and is still far from feature complete!
- General polishing on common bugs that are persistent in Opera such as redraw bugs, Google Gears and other Google products that just seems to hate working with Opera (Google Wave).
- One thing about the BitTorrent dialog bugs me. I usually select to use my default torrent application rather than Opera which happens to be uTorrent, but the “Open” and “Save” buttons can be a bit confusing. Why would these not be relabeled to “Start” and “Save“? The Opera download manager already uses the Resume and Restart terminology so it would make more sense to me if it were consistent. If you think about it as follows you might find the confusion: So, I want to save this torrent to my computer right? Or do I want to Open it? What’s the difference? Oh, so apparently save only saves some weird “.torrent” file to my computer. I guess I needed to click open. Shouldn’t they have named it start…or something more logical?
- During Fullscreen mode I often wish I had an easy access bar that I could hover that would drop down the tabs and address bar for tabs open in the current windows, similar to how Firefox manages tabs in Fullscreen mode. I don’t understand why Opera makes this task so out-of-the-way.
- [done] Windows 7 Jump Lists featuring frequently opened tabs as well as currently open tabs and maybe the last x number of closed tabs.
- [done] Windows 7 Aero and tabs pulled up into the title bar for more space efficiency.
- Source View updates. Any update to the source viewer would be welcome. This feature of Opera has been abandoned for far too long (…remind you of Duke Nukem Forever anyone?).
- [done] I think Opera should remove the Rewind and Fastforward navigation buttons (as well as the home button) by default (for fresh installations). These buttons tend to simply add clutter to the navigation bar for new users who will most likely never use them intentionally. I’ve even started removing them first thing for all instances that I install for friends and family just so that Opera has a simple default feel. Simplicity is one reason that so many people are flocking to Google Chrome.
Have other wishlist items that I forgot? Leave ‘em in the comments!
It’s been a while since I’ve written my wishlist for Opera. Now that the top five features I’ve requested have been implemented in Opera 10 (to be released), I’ve got to start putting together some items for the next major update!
In my previous top five wishlist, I was hoping for features like Developer Tools, Auto-Update, more Widget Capabilities, In-line Spell Check and, last but not least, an Improved Interface.
I’ve updated my previous wishlist with links to reference when and how these changes took place, so if you want to look further into that just checkout the first wishlist (linked above).
For my new wishlist, I think the them follows the general theme of the previous one..or at least 3/5 of them. I hoping to see Opera become more noob friendly. In it’s current state, it’s very usable for anyone, however, they do tend to have a bit too much of an engineering took and a little skittish on the designer and user interface front.
Let’s dive right in..
- Menu Systems. The menus for toolbars and even some main menu bar sub-menus are designed too complex and confusing. If you want one of your less tech. savvy friends to use Opera, don’t show them (most) of the menus! An example of simplifying the menu system would be to simply move the “Customize -> Remove From Toolbar” to the main menu or root level and rename it to “Delete” so that deleting buttons and other toolbar elements is written in clear English.
This menu item was moved to a sub-menu to reduce accidental use, however, it is now placed far out of reach and over complicates such a simple task. The naming or wording of this menu item is also overly complex. Firefox uses a simple “Delete” menu item for the same task and it makes the whole thing seem so much simpler.
This isn’t the only menu item or menu that is in desperate need of simplifying. I’d like to see each and every menu analysed and modified to make wording as simple as possible and follow general layout structures that all other competitors are using.
- Completed Opera Link. Depending on how heavily you use Opera, you may know by now that they have a feature that allows you to synchronize some of your settings between different computers by signing into your (free) My Opera account. This way you can have the same settings for Opera on two or more different computers such as the same Bookmarks or Speed Dial entries.
I would like to see Opera finally complete this feature to support all of the other settings that you hate to update all of the time, such as Blocked Content, Mail Accounts or News Feeds, Widgets, IRC, etc. Currently, the only synchronized settings are Bookmarks, Speed Dial, Personal Bar, Notes, Typed History and Searches.
- [done] <video> and <audio>. Opera already has some support for HTML5, however, the very cool parts are still lacking. Firefox 3.5 just released yesterday with support for the new <video> tag that will hopefully make the use of flash obsolete. An experimental build of Opera 10 with <video> support was released from Opera Labs a while back, however, they appear to have been slacking in this particular developmental area and Opera 10 is (as far as I know) planned to be released with the lack of support for the <video> and <audio> tags.
This is a terrible move in my opinion. However, Firefox 3.0 was not released with these capabilities and only extended to support them later in Firefox 3.5, so it just might work out if they are added later.
- [done] CSS3 Border-Radius Support. You can notice the lack of support for this CSS gem easily from kyleabaker.com. If you compare this page from Opera and Firefox 3+ you will notice that Opera doesn’t render the rounded top corners of the tabs in the header like Firefox does.
This is a simple CSS3 feature, but it’s also one of the most noticeably lacking CSS3 features in Opera to date. It’s CSS3 candy like this that many developers are anxious to start using and it’s a shame that Opera hasn’t even offered a browser specific border-radius attribute as Webkit and Firefox have done.
- Bug Squashing Session. The last, but probably most important wishlist item is that Opera takes a break from implementing new features and puts some extreme focus into squashing every last bug in the database. While I know that this isn’t feasible, I do believe that a great deal of priority could be placed on this and then some of the lower priority bugs could finally get some attention.
It seems that Opera is continuously releasing new features one after another. While this is great in one respect, it is also very troublesome in another. We all want to see breaking edge technology and sweet new features, right? But, at what cost are we getting these sweet new features?
When Opera’s built-in source viewer was released, I remember finding it to be one of the most useful features in the browser for web development. I could easily make changes to a page and view them immediately without any need for uploading and refreshing the page!
Now, one of the most limiting features of this source viewer that I’ve found is the lack of line numbers. Something this simple was filled as a bug some 2 years ago (plus or minus) and has yet to be fixed. This is obviously a low priority bug, but a bug squashing session that eliminated the nastiest bugs, allowing time to working on these easier bugs would be great!
If you have any ideas for an Opera wishlist, post them in the comments or post a link to your blog article about them!
If you didn’t know already, Google has been working on a platform for mobile phones named Android. Android is an open source platform that is based on the Linux platform.
The G1 will be in competition with the Apple iPhone and will feature an App store that is very similar to the one that is currently in place for the iPhone.
Many of the features will even be similar while the interface will be much different.
The current price for the HTC G1 is set at a very competitive price – $179, just $20 less than the iPhone.
The G1 looks fairly similar in appearance to the iPhone, featuring a large touch screen. However, the G1 also features a slide out keyboard and in a very slick way.
The screen of the phone slides to the right and underneath where the screen was is now a full featured keyboard!
I have been considering starting an Amazon wishlist, so now just may be the perfect time for me to add a thing or two to my wishlist and publish it — the HTC G1 being one of them.
So if any of my friends or a stranger having a good day would like to make my day then you can do so much more easily!
The phone is currently only offered with a T-Mobile plan, however, I’m hoping that like the iPhone..I will be about to purchase the phone itself and adjust it to fit my network.
We’ll see. For now I’ll just be keeping up with some of the latest news on it.
I now have an Amazon Wishlist setup. So feel free to make a purchase whenever you see fit. The link is also in the list on the right.
The other day this “duh” idea just popped into my head, so I thought I might draw it up and send it off to get some opinions and reviews.
Basically, I just realized that while adding a new entry to Speed Dial is relatively painless, it could be a whole lot more convinient and here’s how.
If for instance you find yourself checking a specific web site or web page frequently then you might be tempted to bookmark that page or save it to Speed Dial.
If you think about it, to bookmark a page you don’t even have to “leave” the page or switch to a different screen or window to do so.
You can go to the menu item “Bookmarks -> Bookmark Page” or you can just press Ctrl+D.
My idea makes adding or updating Speed Dials more intuitive in a way by adding a menu item to the right click menu of all pages.
I would add the entry “Add to Speed Dial”, which would then open a simple dialog prompting the user to select the Speed Dial entry that they would like to store the current page to.
This would be very handy in my opinion as not all users will realize that they don’t have to copy and paste the url if it is not already listed in their opened pages, frequently visited pages or an Opera page.
It’s also (in my opinion) visually reassuring of which page you are actually adding.
I posted an Opera forum topic about this as well and it has a poll so go vote!
Recently I blogged about my top 5 wishes for Opera as a part of a tag game that has been going around the net quiet heavily lately. Now I’d like to make a list of wishes that I have for Opera in a more general form. These wish items have no specific priority and are strictly based on my opinions and thoughts. Some wishes will be repeated from my previous top 5 wish list.
So, to ease your anxiety from waiting..here is my list:
- [done] -> [link] Auto-Update system to make updating Opera to the latest and most secure version painless for new users as well as us fanatics. Similar to the auto-update feature that Mozilla currently has.
- [done] -> [link] Developer Tools. It is true that Opera currently has a decent set of developer tools, however, these current tools (in version 3122) do not come close to competing with other available developer tools for competing browsers such as Firebug for Firefox. Many web developers (even Opera enthusiasts) turn to Firefox to developer their sites instead of Opera and this is where Opera is letting us down. With such high standards support one would assume that a cutting edge developer tool kit would be available for the browser, but it just isn’t there yet.These have now been released. You can find more information about the Opera Developer Tools, named Dragonfly, at http://dragonfly.opera.com! Dragonfly is now available in snapshot builds of Opera 9.5 and will be available in the final release as well!
This wishlist may or may not be appended to over time. I will do my best to update the list to let you know when any of the wishes I’ve listed have been implemented in Opera. Stay tuned!
And to Opera…Give the people what they want, haha, or continue to do so. Keep up the fantastic work!
Last updated 2008-12-04
Recently, I read a post at OperaWatch.com where Daniel has started a new game similar to tag..with Opera. So the game is that you make a list of your top most 5 wishes for the Opera browser. The features or suggestions are to improve Opera in your own opinion. After listing your 5 wishes you should leave at least 5 other friends names that are linked to their blog page. Once linked, they are entered into the game and have to make their own list and tag new friends. So I guess I’ll just jump right in…
- [done] -> [link] Developer Tools. I wish for developer tools as my top wish simply because Opera lacks in this area. Other browsers such as Firefox and Safari already have great developer tools. Most people that I know turn to Firebug in Firefox to debug their web sites. Opera really needs to step up and release something amazing asap!
- [done] -> [link] Auto-Update. My second wish is for an auto-update system similar to the one that is already present in Firefox. Most people won’t understand that currently the only way to update Opera is to go to the download page and download the entire program over again. This could be handled so much better with an auto-update feature that downloads only small patch files instead of downloading the entire ~6mb file each time. This feature would also include auto-updating of plug-ins to make the stress on the user as little as possible.
- [done] -> [link-1 link-2] Extended Widget Capabilities. This wish may not seem like a popular wish, however, many people are begging for extensions and other exact copies from Firefox. I believe in the widgets. The only thing that I feel desperately needs to be improved to them is to allow them to interact with the browser it self and even interact with the OS on a low and safe level. If widgets could interact with the browser itself a lot more then we would have infinite possibilities for new widgets. Widgets really could start to have some of the same capabilities that make extensions such a popular choice today.
- [done] -> [link] In-line Spell Check. I know that many people have been begging for this feature for ages. It goes with out saying that this feature would become a success from the start. Also, this is just a suggestion, but a wiki could be started to allow members to contribute dictionaries for various languages etc. so they could be included with the installer program and just compressed.
- [done] -> [link] Improved Interface. This last wish is more of an improvement wish rather than a feature request. It took me a while to decide on this wish, but I’d really like to see the interface improved on tons. I know that lots of work is going into the mail client at the moment with Kestrel in mind. The freezing bugs are rumored to be squashed and the interface of the mail client is supposed to be slightly redesigned to make managing your mail much easier. I’d really like to see the rest of Opera improved upon though, including the notes, contacts, info panel (which has been improved already internally), transfers (including Bit Torrent downloads), widgets (some kind of bring all to front or something), windows panel (thumbnail view instead of just list view), a thumbnail view of history pages, thumbnail view for bookmarks, upgraded chat client, possibly even jabber support, better support for reporting fraudulent sites (the login causes many people to avoid reporting), and keep the incredible speed you’re so famous for!
The five friends that I tag are: haavard, zomg, Remco Lanting, FataL and Nicomen.
Tag, you’re it.
Last updated 2008-12-07