New Release of Opera for Macs
Opera Software ASA has just released version 5.0 Beta 4 for Opera. This new version has a link toolbar with improved drag and drop not yet available for other platforms (I impatiently wait for that on my PC version!!), a new installer, better AppleScript support, autofill of forms, new balloon help, a revised preference layout, searchable and dockable bookmarks, and more. As always, there’s the free version or the US$39 version that eliminates the ads. See the press release below for more details.
I’ve been a major supporter of Opera for quite some time now, in part because I see their good intentions to work with designers and developers toward web standards and to make a great browser that loads quickly and works effortlessly. A great piece of software (or Web site) is one that you can use without having to think about it, and for me Opera meets that nearly all the time.
Why I took the leap to Opera for my default browser
I took the leap to Opera after having been a devoted Netscape user seemingly forever. We all know what happened with the browser wars, unfortunately, and the stalling of Netscape’s next versions. As a web designer and developer, I needed (and continue to need) to use a browser regularly that supported more of the W3C recommendations, which unfortunately Netscape 4.x versions didn’t (don’t) handle too well.
I tried Internet Explorer 5.0 and 5.5 as my main browser for 2-3 months, but it kept crashing on me all the time, and I also wasn’t comfortable with its vulnerabilities. I’d already been using Opera for a couple of years for testing, and with each new version I was gradually using it more for browsing. So I finally opted to make it my default browser.
While there are a few sites, such as Adobe and McAfee, that I can’t access certain parts of with Opera 5.12 at the moment (password access doesn’t work), I can access most other sites with ease. I especially love being able to open Opera with the previously saved multiple windows open. As a multi-tasker, I like having several windows to view for morning news, checking out a site I noticed the day before but didn’t have time to review, picking up where I left off, etc.
Opera also opens very quickly and I’m off and running. While that’s especially handy for me if I’m on the phone with a client during which we may often say, "go to this site and take a look at . . . .," it also saves time throughout my work day.
As a web designer and developer I have several browsers installed that I use for testing and browsing the web, of course, currently including Internet Explorer 5.5, Netscape 6.2, AOL 6, and Mozilla 0.9.5. I’m increasingly impressed with Mozilla, having downloaded Mozilla 0.9.5 last weekend. I’ve used it less than 20 hours so far but I’m impressed with its quick load time, ease of use, and increasing support of W3C Recommendations. It has crashed a couple of times, unlike Opera that rarely crashes, but it continues to improve, and I’ll continue to be hopeful.
While Netscape is now part of AOL, we may be seeing Gecko shipping with AOL’s Compuserve version in the not-too-distant future, too. AOL 7 has just been released, which continues to be built with Internet Explorer.
Here’s Opera’s press release issued this morning about their latest Mac version.
Opera with new features for Mac:
New Opera for Mac Beta Introduces Mac-Exclusive Features
OSLO, Norway - Oct. 31, 2001 - Opera Software ASA today released Opera 5.0 for Mac OS Beta 4 for operating systems 7.5.3 through 9.2. Mac users can now download the browser for free with a small ad-banner in the upper right-hand corner and enjoy new features such as the unique link toolbar and improved drag and drop available only on Mac OS 7.5.3 to 9.2.
Opera 5.0 for Mac Beta 4 includes major improvements such as a new installer, better AppleScript support, autofill of forms, new balloon help and a revised preference layout. The bookmarks are now searchable, and users can dock them as well.
"Opera 5.0 for Mac Beta 4 has lots of new features," says Hakon Lie, CTO of Opera Software ASA, "and we are especially happy to offer our Mac users exciting features such as the link toolbar and improved drag and drop not yet available for other Opera platforms."
Users can download Opera 5.0 for Mac OS Beta 4 for free from <http://www.opera.com/mac/>. After installing the browser, users can register Opera for USD39 and support Opera’s efforts to develop the browser further.
Opera 5.0 for Mac OS Beta 4 supports the following World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) standards: 128-bit encryption, TLS 1.0, SSL 2 and 3, CSS1 and CSS2, XML, HTML 4.01, HTTP 1.1, ECMAScript, DOM and WAP/WML. Opera 5.0 for Mac Beta 4 has powerful search features where users can easily move between the most popular search engines, and search for terms, domain names or stock quotes.
About Opera Software
Opera Software ASA is an industry leader in the development of Web browsers for the desktop and device markets, partnering with companies such as IBM, AMD, Symbian, Canal+ Technologies, Ericsson and Lineo. The Opera browser has received international recognition from end-users and the industry press for being faster, smaller and more standards-compliant than other browsers. Opera Software ASA is a privately held company headquartered in Oslo, Norway. Learn more about Opera at www.opera.com/mac/.
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