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Opera 7.54u2

weather: cloudy
outside: 9.2°C
mood: harumph
I have Opera 7.54u2 Build 3929 =) I'm giving it a try because the memory hogginess of Mozilla is bothering me. The last time I tried Opera, I hated it because the navigation buttons were humongous. But there are very nice minimalist skins for Opera now. cat_irix and brokenclay_ had some very interesting things to say about it.

First blush memory usage is not that different from Mozilla. Moz peaked at 62M and Opera peaked at 70M after restarting and opening the same set of bookmarks. But I want to see what Opera is like over time, the way I use it regularly. I have caching set to '0' in Moz and I turned off caching in Opera.

I quite like Opera. It might take a little while to settle in, but I think I can give it a fair run now that the buttons are small enough. There are functionality things that are annoying though:

  • The most infuriating one is the toLocaleDateString() method for the Date Object. This method, as specified in ECMA-262 3rd Edition (§, page 124), is supposed to return "the date portion of the current date-time in the current time zone in a convenient, human-readable form that corresponds to the conventions of the host environment's current locale". It's up to the individual browser to implement something reasonable. So, document.writeln(new Date().toLocaleDateString()); right now should give me something like: "Friday, March 25, 2005".

    But Opera's implementation gives me "3/25/2005". >K{ And I find that Opera has some very unexpected interpretations of HTML and CSS sometimes...

  • I can't make custom keywords like Mozilla. They have search bars for Google, Google News, Google Groups, (but no Google Images which is the second most frequent one I use), Amazon, Ebay, a dictionary (but I want Merriam-Webster Online), several translation ones (but no Chinese!!) and I end up removing them all.

    Edit C:\Documents and Settings\[LOCALUSER]\Application Data\Opera\Opera\profile\search.ini to change them. w00t!! =)

  • Hitting ESC doesn't stop animated GIFs. => Adding "Enable GIF animation" box to a toolbar works, but takes up a lot of toolbar space. I might be able to map something to it in Preferences->Mouse and Keyboard.

  • No bookmark groups... they're just folders, like Firefox. At least, the option to Open All is in the same place at the top each time.

  • I can't bookmark all the pages I currently have open. I have to add them one by one. This annoys me because it's CTRL-T to set a bookmark instead of CTRL-D. I have small hands and CTRL-T is a bigger stretch. And unlike CTRL-D which just dumps the link to a default location, CTRL-T will bring up a dialogue that lets you add the link to a specific location. So, instead of add-add-add-add-add-add, open bookmarks, drag them all into my folder, I have to go through the complete adding procedure n times.

  • No custom ordering of bookmarks. It's alphabetical and it won't let me change it. It seems to remember the order if I add them manually from scratch. But if I import my Mozilla bookmarks, the order can be slightly off and there's no way for me to change it.

    View->Sort by my order. And rearrange.

  • I can't block images from a certain server with just the vanilla install. Mozilla lets me right-click->Block images from this server. Firefox was even nicer. It says "Block images from ________" and it gave me the name of the location, so I didn't have to right-click and go to Properties to see it first. => There is the Show Images menu... but that's not really what I wanted.

  • Customized blocking of cookies is confusing. I like the Mozilla UI much better. Select the cookie in the list, select "Do not allow this site to set future cookies" and click "Remove".

  • Google Ad bar. >K{ But that's ignorable. At least it's just text and not dancie images that I'll feel like killing. And you can make it context sensitive to grab ads that are relevant to whatever you're viewing.


( 18 comments — Leave a comment )
Mar. 26th, 2005 07:12 am (UTC)
Try the Breeze II v3.8 skin, it's the one I use and very minimal.

You can bookmark quickly by dragging the tab of the page to the bookmark folder of your choice.

Under the view of bookwmark (right next to add), you can sort them in other ways
Mar. 26th, 2005 07:30 am (UTC)
Breeze II is very nice... I got Breeze Simplified V4.13 in white =)

bookmark quickly by dragging the tab of the page to the bookmark folder of your choice.

Ah, cool...

Under the view of bookwmark (right next to add), you can sort them in other ways

Oh, that's not the kind of sorting I want. I want to be able to put them in my own arbitrary order.
Mar. 26th, 2005 08:17 am (UTC)
So what about the sort by my order option?
Mar. 26th, 2005 08:30 am (UTC)
Oh, I didn't see that one... cool =)
Mar. 27th, 2005 05:55 pm (UTC)
Also, you can add all your open pages to your bookmarks by right clicking on a bookmark folder and selecting 'add all'
Mar. 26th, 2005 09:08 am (UTC)
The thing that gets me about Opera, and that really renders it unusable for me except as a design test browser, is that hitting Alt+D doesn't get me to the URL bar. I find that absolutely TM infuriating.
Mar. 26th, 2005 09:18 am (UTC)
You can add /edit your own keyboard shortcuts in preferences -> mouse and keyboard.
Mar. 26th, 2005 09:40 am (UTC)
Yeah, but I can't really be arsed, and I do think that Alt-D, being a standard across IE, Mozilla, and Firefox, should be incorporated into Opera. Also, their refusal to allow colored <hr> elements irritates me. But then, I'm pretty pre-biased towards Firefox, Devanagari encoding glitches notwithstanding.
Mar. 26th, 2005 01:56 pm (UTC)
Alt-D, being a standard across IE, Mozilla, and Firefox

First I heard about that... oh, wait, I remember it used to be Alt+D in MSIE 5.5, but it changed to Alt+S in MSIE 6.0 (at least the German version). I was vaguely annoyed by that.

I cope fairly well with F8-for-Opera and Ctrl+L-for-Firefox; I nearly always do the right thing even though I use both browsers side-by-side a fair bit.
Mar. 26th, 2005 09:10 am (UTC)
A partial workaround for animated gifs can be putting the "enable gif animation" button on one of the toolbars so it's easy to toggle, hope it doesn't go against your rule of using vanilla browsers because "customise toolbars" is part of the standard distribution ? and if you don't mind installing one of the toolbar extensions, you can get more buttons (Tobbs' theatre adds a pushbutton for animated gifs in addition to the standard checkbutton)

It's also worth to have the image toggle button on a toolbar as a partial workaround for the missing "block images from server" (I agree it's maddening that such option is missing, it's one of the reasons I do use Moz/FF, in Opera I just switch all images off when needed)

And you can add your own search engines by manually editing the search.ini file.

Mar. 26th, 2005 06:45 pm (UTC)
I knew that complaining out loud would get me all kinds of advice on how to do things =D Thanks!

I don't mind playing with preference settings, but I prefer not to install extra plugins/extensions... a lot of those are third party and un-QA'ed, which makes me a bit uneasy. I do make exceptions for skins and if it's a particularly cool one done by an ostensibly trustworthy group (like, say, an LJ-related plugin =)

putting the "enable gif animation" button on one of the toolbars so it's easy to toggle

That works very nicely, but I wish it were an icon instead of a checkbox with text. Although, I could try to map my own key to that... the keyboard mapping is a bit nebulous to me, but I'll Google for it in a sec.

It's also worth to have the image toggle button on a toolbar as a partial workaround for the missing "block images from server"

Yeah, I have that in my Address Bar. I stripped the Address Bar quite bare because I like having lots of room to see large URLs in the location, but the default widgets kept glomming back onto it, so I gave up. =}

manually editing the search.ini file

Mar. 26th, 2005 08:46 pm (UTC)
Was going to tell you abou search.ini, but several peple beat me to it. I use the Metal Blue skin. I move the tabs to the bottom of the window, and ruthlessly delete almost everything at the top (google search bar, etc) until I'm down to little menu icons and an address bar. Never knew about Alt-D, so its absence doesn't bother me.

BTW, you know you don't have to use the custom search bars, just the letters, right? So "g search term" typed in the address bar googles "search term". I keep trying to do that in IE, and darn! it doesn't work.
Mar. 26th, 2005 08:50 pm (UTC)
What mine looks like:

screenshot of my opera
Mar. 26th, 2005 11:17 pm (UTC)
Re: Metal Blue

Ooo, that _is_ nice =)

And, yes, I knew about the default keywords that work in the address bar (g, f, z and so on)... I just wanted my own.

I keep trying to do that in IE, and darn! it doesn't work.

Haha! Yes! And I keep middle-clicking in IE to open in a new tab =D =D
Mar. 28th, 2005 02:29 am (UTC)
My favourite things about Opera are mouse gestures and easy google searching (g 'what you are searching for' in the navigation bar.)
Mar. 28th, 2005 02:32 am (UTC)
I should have read the other comments first, sorry.
Mar. 28th, 2005 05:09 pm (UTC)
I'm an old-school UNIX geek, all my commands must be two or three characters =D I've been playing with search.ini to make my own:

gg => Google for the exact phrase
gi => Google Image search (because I find there are tons of things that people talk about and I have no idea what they are)
gm => Google Maps search

lj => go to journal
lji => go to userinfo
ljp => go to userpics
ljm => to to memories

af => AcronymFinder.Com lookup
mw => look up word in Merriam-Webster online dictionary
dd => look up word at Dictionary.Com
th => look up word at Thesaurus.Com
Mar. 28th, 2005 10:08 pm (UTC)
That is so excellent, and really makes me wish that I knew UNIX. Those are all such useful commands and would save amazing amounts of time! The only thing I could think of to add would be translation, perhaps Google translation, so the shortcut could be gt+letter codes for language to translate from and language to translate into (gteg for Google Translation English to German.)
( 18 comments — Leave a comment )


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