Opera 17, pros and cons

  • I *thought* i kept up to date, I've used Opera since version 3 and 3 weeks ago removed all browsers and data and downloaded new ones (Chrome, Opera) and got version 12 somehow.

    Today I looked and we're at version 17. I knew about the V8 and WebKit upgrades - long awaited - so this wasn't a total shock.

    Pros:
    V8. This along makes it *work*. Finally. WebKit - this alone makes it pretty. Now stuff works.

    Cons:
    Too much was thrown away to simplify to look "like the windows 8 experience".

    Specifically in my case:
    a) bookmarks are gone. We've spent over a decade using these. We import them and export them as use opera to manage them. They are an integral part of any browser. They have to come back.

    b) external source viewer. I use vi. I've used vi since the 1970s. I'm not going to change now and unless I have the functionality of vi at least in a source viewer even if it's not vi, then Opera is now dramatically less useful than it was before. Your source viewer doesn't even have a "select all". Guys, this is useless. And it's real real important.

    These have to come back, and this is not negotiable. If Opera won't do this, then please consider releasing the source to people can fix it.

    "Stash" is a cute idea. Some people may want it. Make it optional. Why should those of us who don't want it, pay for the code overhead to have at as well as losing functionality we depended on?

    "Discovery" is horrific. Please just stop. Make it an option, but default it to off. Some of that stuff is pretty tawdry.

  • Originally posted by rs79:

    bookmarks are gone.

    No they're not. You can import them to the Quick Access Bar (Bookmarks Bar). A menu and manager may come back later.

    Originally posted by rs79:

    These have to come back, and this is not negotiable.

    Who are you going to negotiate with? Who is going to care if you stop using Opera?

    Originally posted by rs79:

    Your source viewer doesn't even have a "select all".

    Ctrl A works for me.

    Originally posted by rs79:

    "Discovery" is horrific. Please just stop.

    Agreed, but a few users seem to like it. As with all features you don't want or need, don't use it. You can even disable the preloading of Discover contents in Settings. If you never click the "Discover" tab, no content will ever be downloaded to your cache, but if you open the Discover tab, it will fetch the content.

  • Originally posted by rs79:

    a) bookmarks are gone. We've spent over a decade using these. We import them and export them as use opera to manage them. They are an integral part of any browser. They have to come back.

    I access my bookmarks via the QAB.

    These have to come back, and this is not negotiable. If Opera won't do this, then please consider releasing the source to people can fix it.

    First off, Opera is free to you so you don't get to negotiate the terms. Secondly, why should they release their intellectual property to anyone? It's theirs.

    "Stash" is a cute idea. Some people may want it. Make it optional. Why should those of us who don't want it, pay for the code overhead to have at as well as losing functionality we depended on?

    "Discovery" is horrific. Please just stop. Make it an option, but default it to off. Some of that stuff is pretty tawdry.

    I like Stash and I like Discover. Why should your views trump mine? And this, you see, is the problem. We can't negotiate so we must decide to either adapt or go elsewhere. Really, it's as simple as that.

  • It doesn't matter if you like stash and discovery or not, that's nothing to do with anything. However the automatic presumption everyone will like them is flawed; they should be options.

    Opera built a reputation on a browser that let you work better, smarter and faster. You could get more things done with the Opera browser in a given period of time than with any other browse, and this wasn't one thing it was a combination of a bunch of little things. Over time the ability to work on the web got better, not only for Opera users, but for the rest of the web with things like tabs and css coming from Opera.

    So, as time goes on it would be reasonable to expect it gets even easier to work on the web because of more innovations from Opera and switching to V8 and WebKit were done for this reason. You can get more stuff done, faster.

    Taking away functionality is not a step forward.

    We can argue about stylistic things like the lack of a Home button - that only costs me an extra click (some of us use a Home Page the way it was intended to be which you can read about in comp.sys.infosystems.www from 1989 or so, and already have our own "speed dial" and now have to get to it from some other index page. This is what the home button was *for*! I can understand if full tool-bar functionality can't be rolled out in this new version, but at least a home button. Please.) but when you take away some area of functionality and you can't even do something any more that's an enormous step backwards. That's not just adding one mouse click to one simple task (and never mind I do that hundreds of times a day) this is adding a lot more steps than just one extra mouse click. Suddenly a whole large number of things either take more actions to do the same thing as in the case of one extra mouse click to get to my (local) home page but other things like the lack of a clone button means the steps to replace that lack of functionality are manifold. Stuff now takes longer. This is the opposite direction what you want to happen!

    Bookmarks are portable via import and export and interoperability of data is important. I can understand not everyone wants to use them and I hope the new browser just isn't finished yet, to drop these is patently absurd.

    The lack of a view source helper app is equally absurd. This slows down the development process the very thing that drives the popularity of opera. You really don't want to do that. I use dragonfly maybe a couple of times a month. Maybe. I use view source every day, being forced to give up the tools one uses to write and work with this stuff that they've carried around for 30 years and ported to every platform and you're prevented from using it so it can look more like a Windows phone? That's a non-starter too.

    I'm sure they'll finish the browser soon and will put these things back in. Until then we'll have to work with 12 which only renders half the new stuff correctly but at least it's usable, then check it with 17 or chrome to make sure it looks right. This is a good example of that: http://rs79.vrx.net/interests/computers/sw/js/roundup/sliders/

    I'm guessing a lot of the cool features were intimately tied internally to presto so no so easily portable to the WebKit version. I understand how that works. Hopefully Opera will do as they say and look at user feedback. Perhaps it would be good to keep track of these, maybe even prioritize them. Some are show stoppers, some are just inconvenient. Even a binary mode switch "expert mode / regular mode" to switch between interfaces would be fine. But I don't see throwing away 15 years worth of refinements in one go like this. It just makes no sense.

  • OOOOOooooooook, this is worse and an even worse show stopper. Forms have been destroyed. They don't work at all any more and only Opera got this right, ever.

    Here's the scenario: have a complex form, with maybe 50+ fields. Maybe you don't want to fill them all out and fill out a few and click the submit button, see if they look ok, then go back, add a few more, or correct them if they weren't, click submit, go back and keep dong this till they're all done.

    This relies on the property that when you go back to a form it's ALL STILL THERE. Not a blank form, but everything you typed before, all of it, every letter, is all there. Opera was the only browser this was every true in and I've been screaming this for years to people - if you use complex forms you have to use Opera because only it gets these right, they're pretty much unusable otherwise.

    This was true from at least version 7 or 8 to 12. It's not true in 17 which looks and acts like Chrome - this is actually handy as it serves as a warning and now I know I have to use old Opera to do any real editing.

    Hopefully this is one of the first things to get fixed. This was really really important. This is like taking the correction ribbon off a typewriter an saying this is the new improved model.

  • Originally posted by rs79:

    Forms have been destroyed.

    The best thing to do about that is to submit a bug report. Ranting here won't help.

    The other stuff has been said more than enough already. I am waiting for at least GUI customising to return, then I can add my own Home button or whatever I need.

    Opera have always innovated. Some users dislike speed dial, and never use it, but it turned out to be popular. Maybe Stash will too when people actually figure out how to use it. I personally won't ever use Discover — but then I don't have to.

    Don't plan your future on everything that you love about Opera returning in the future. Some features will, no doubt, but an awful lot more may never return — you may have to rely on extensions for Notes, for example.

  • I'm still using Opera 12 but I wanna update and give a try to 17.

    Can you tell me if my bookmarks and my notes will stay in link.opera.com after the update?

  • Originally posted by quiviro:

    Can you tell me if my bookmarks and my notes will stay in link.opera.com after the update?

    You should keep local backups anyway, but yes they should still be there. Install Opera 17 separately and keep your existing installation. To import your profile to Opera 17 after installing it, run it with this shortcut:

    "<Full path to Opera 17>\launcher.exe" --presto-small-prefs-dir="<Full path to Opera Presto>\profile"
  • I'll file bug reports when I finish finding bugs! But they're not really bugs they're missing features.

    Speed dial is really cool and I can see the merit of providing the alternative world behind web pages it provides and this is thoughtfully done in both design and aesthetics. But if you don't need it it's a huge price to pay for losing fundamental and essential features.

    I'm not really sure why it's not an add on.

    It may in turn not be possible to satisfy both goals: making it the simplest possible user interface reflecting modern design directions and be the full featured noble workhorse of a tool is used to be in the same package. Having a "Home" and "Pro" version of the browser is one possible solution. MS legitimize this really well with XP I thought.

    Also I notice it has the same minor quirks that Chrome does in it's behavior. I'm guessing this isn't Opera code with WebKit and V8 added to it, just a stripped down re-branded version of chrome and now the decisions have to be made what gets put back in.

    Not sure why the home button was taken out though.

  • I did submit a bug report on the broken forms though. No other missing feature will cost quite so much time lost/wasted as that one.

  • Another thing that's gone missing from Opera 17 is the ability to right-click an image and display the image Exif via the drop-down menu. Opera 12 was near-enough unique in having this excellent function. For other browsers you have to get an add-on. Unfortunately no-one has written an add-on for Opera 17.

  • Yeah, that and right click --> "open image" has been replaced by Chrome's useless "Open image in new tab".

    Again, more mouse clicks to do the same thing.

    Image Properties was utterly invaluable too, as you point out.

  • Note also the Cert stuff has changed rather drastically. I think this is a good thing. Pretty sure.

    http://www.opera.com/docs/ca/

  • Originally posted by rs79:

    It doesn't matter if you like stash and discovery or not, that's nothing to do with anything. However the automatic presumption everyone will like them is flawed; they should be options.

    Yes indeed. AND it doesn't matter that YOU don't like Stash and Discover and yet it was YOU who raised the issue in the first place. I'm simply posting back to you that there are differences of opinion and yours should not trump anyone else's.

    Opera built a reputation on a browser that let you work better, smarter and faster. You could get more things done with the Opera browser in a given period of time than with any other browse, and this wasn't one thing it was a combination of a bunch of little things. Over time the ability to work on the web got better, not only for Opera users, but for the rest of the web with things like tabs and css coming from Opera.

    So, as time goes on it would be reasonable to expect it gets even easier to work on the web because of more innovations from Opera and switching to V8 and WebKit were done for this reason. You can get more stuff done, faster.

    Taking away functionality is not a step forward.

    I've probably been using Opera longer than you (since 1999 back when I paid for it) so I know a thing or two about its functionality. The fact is, Opera never gained much more acceptance than 3% worldwide and evidently that was not completely acceptable to those with a financial say in the company's operations (that would be shareholders... not you nor I). Functionality has not been taken away. You can still use v.12.16 so use it. Functionality is being added to the new browser and only time will tell whether what is added back will meet your requirements.

    But I don't see throwing away 15 years worth of refinements in one go like this. It just makes no sense.

    If you would go and read the dev blogs, you would understand better what is being done. It's a Herculean task to rewrite the browser. Many of the so-called refinements of which you speak will be added back according to what I've read. Some unfortunately will not. That's life, my friend. Nothing stays the same and given the fact that Opera is a free piece of software, I would say that you don't really have much to complain about. If it does not meet with your requirements then you have the options of going elsewhere, remaining with an older version which is still receiving security patches and/or installing the new version alongside the older version to keep a closer watch on how things progress. But to simply ramble on a list of complaints ALL of which have already been enumerated hundreds of times in the forum threads is nigh to useless. It is what it is. They're not about to reverse their new direction so you're going to have to adapt, be patient or leave. Those are your choices.

  • Originally posted by scratchspace:

    PS As a point of clarification, when you say "everything you typed before, all of it, every letter, is all there", I presume that you intend to be taken literally. However, note that v.12 does not, in my experience, actually do what you say. Specifically, when, after having clicked the "submit" button on the form and having gone to the next page, you return to the form on the previous page, neither password fields nor checkboxes for things that you might have opted out of will be in the same condition that you left them in. So, for example, you will return to find that the password field is blank.

    I don't know about checkboxes, but the password is kind of a special case. I also know that Firefox improved a fair bit in this area since… 23?

  • Frenzie, I've learned to respect your opinions over these months of back and forth. I'm curious about something. Given the choice between Chrome and Firefox, which would you choose and why? And if privacy were not an issue, would your choice change? If so, why? BTW... there was an interesting article in PC Pro today on the Reset button being added to Chrome.

    http://www.pcpro.co.uk/news/security/385129/chrome-gets-reset-button-to-fix-hijacked-settings

  • Originally posted by scratchspace:

    it seems to me that this forum cannot afford to be discouraging posters who exhibit even just the minimal degree of reason, and the OP's posts here certainly exceed that standard.

    Oh come on now. You're being just a wee bit overly dramatic if you think my paltry words are going to have much effect upon anyone. I simply told him the truth (albeit as I see it). He has some decisions to make and rather than wringing his hands and rambling on about things we've heard a thousand times before, it behooves him to inform himself of what has gone on before. We know what is lacking. We don't need this outlined a thousand times over. We're faced with a relatively simple set of options and I outlined them. And that is really the long and short of it. I'm not into trying to soothe those who wear their feelings upon their sleeves. This is software, not a way of life. Nothing stays the same... nothing. Sooner or later something had to give and it appears that the shoe has fallen and that something is the death of myOpera and the end of the Presto version of the desktop. And my gut feeling tells me that the email client (standalone) has its days numbered as well. I believe this is little more than a temporary fix for those who were tied into the email client (which to my understanding was not a great number). Opera is changing but so is Microsoft. In fact on Windows Weekly this past week we were informed that the desktop as we know it has its days numbered as well. People had better get used to it. I've been down this road before when the rug was pulled out from under those of us who were Netscape users (Netscape was my browser suite from version 3.0 to 9). It was not the end of the world. Low and behold, the sun rose the next day and life continued on, unabated. There were a few drama queens who foretold death and destruction but they never materialized. And Opera appears to have more than its fair share of drama queens. Life goes on, my friend... with or without Opera.

  • Originally posted by leushino:

    Frenzie, I've learned to respect your opinions over these months of back and forth. I'm curious about something. Given the choice between Chrome and Firefox, which would you choose and why? And if privacy were not an issue, would your choice change?

    I would choose Firefox because it comes with more features I like out of the box, and I also tend to like its extensions better. This goes from basics like the cookie manager, the newsfeed notification button,* and better bookmarks, to more advanced things like userChrome.css, userContent.css, GreaseMonkey, Stylish, NoScript, etc. In the case of e.g. Stylish it's simply the interface I prefer. I find Chromium's settings rather drawn-out and they seem to take many pages for what could fit on one screen. Discarding privacy wouldn't change my opinion.

    * Unfortunately no longer displayed in Fx by default, but still part of the default features without any extensions.

  • I think you just enjoy a good argument. And as your chosen handle indicates, you like to express yourself in carefully crafted sentences. And that's fine but at the end of the day none of this means very much. Opera has its marching orders and it will continue to do what the board tells it to do. But I suppose these community forums give us the false belief that we can effect change. We can't. Oh how this entire episode brings back memories of the end of Netscape. The more things change the more they stay the same.

  • Originally posted by scratchspace:

    as well as on the developer blogs, of course

    If you want the developers to hear you, that's the best place. This forum is a user2user forum for getting help on using Opera. The Wish-list is for feature requests.

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