Brainstorms and Raves

Notes on Web Design, Development, Standards, Typography, Music, and More

Wed

18

DEC

2002

Another Opera Beta Release

As the heading states, the next beta version has been released. Of special interest to web designers and developers is the DOM support and standards-compliance information, the Small-Screen Rendering testing, and the multiple user style sheets. See press release below for more information.

Packed with new features:
Opera 7 for Windows Beta 2 Unleashed

Oslo, Norway - Dec. 18, 2002 - Opera Software today released Opera for Windows Beta 2, crammed with cool new power-browsing features to give the best Internet experience.

Since the release of Beta 1, Opera has added even more features. New additions include “Fast Forward,” immediate access to the pages you will want to visit next; “The Wand,” a one-click log-in password manager; a new links panel that quickly displays all links in the current page; a one-click skin install; powerful new panel management; and multiple user style sheets.

“The new features in Opera 7 will save users even more time when online,” says Mary Lambert, product line manager desktop, Opera Software. “A feature like Fast Forward will endear many new users. Just click Fast Forward, and you quickly move between pages without looking for those pesky small 'next results' or 'next page' links with your mouse. New, innovative features like these will ensure that Opera 7 continues the explosive growth we have seen in users over the last few years.”

Opera 7 has also garnered a lot of interest in the Web developer community. Introduced in Beta 1, developers can now test their Web pages with Opera’s breakthrough Small-Screen Rendering (SSR) technology, and see how Web pages will be presented on small-screen devices such as PDAs and smartphones running Opera. Developers also save time with Opera 7’s new style sheets; offering time-savers such as viewing structural elements without reverting to its source, or click for the page’s outline for easy debugging.

The new features in Opera 7 for Windows include:

New rendering engine
Opera’s new rendering engine supports W3C’s DOM (Document Object Model) level 2, non-standard dynamic HTML (DHTML), CSS1 and CSS2, ECMAScript, and has improved HTML 4.01 support, as well as complete support for WML 1.3 and 2.0. It is faster, smaller and can dynamically change documents through DOM.

M2—new e-mail client
Opera’s new e-mail client, M2, automatically categorizes and sorts e-mail messages by contact and has an integrated spam filter. Innovative features such as QuickReply and QuickFind lets users answer or find e-mails at unrivalled speed. M2 supports POP3, IMAP, ESMTP, and threaded display of mailing lists. In addition, M2 supports news servers with password authentication.

Small-Screen Rendering (SSR)
Web developers can test and see how their pages would look on a smaller mobile devices by simply pressing [Shift][F11] to enable Opera’s small-screen mode. With Opera’s breakthrough SSR technology Web pages are reformatted to fit smaller screens, while maintaining all functionality.

The Wand
Opera now offers one-click log-in to password protected sites. Log-in fields with available passwords are marked with a slick golden rim, and access provided by simply clicking the Wand icon or the keyboard shortcut [CTRL][Enter].

Fast Forward
Now the pages you will want to visit next are immediately available with just another click. Opera will try to detect the most likely “next page” link. If available, Forward will change to Fast Forward, greatly simplifying navigation in multi-page documents. This feature can also be combined with The Wand, providing immediate “Fast Forward” access to password protected sites.

Links panel
Opera 7 includes a new, easier way to navigate pages. The Hotlist now includes a Links panel by default. In the panel, all the links in the current page are listed, with icons for common types like images and movies. Links can then be easily selected for quick navigation or download. In addition, a page’s panel can be 'locked' to keep its particular link list available when users move over to other pages, making it possible to click the page’s links when on a completely other part of the Web.

Multiple user style sheets
Opera comes equipped with 12 new style sheets, varying from helpful features for users and developers, to the more zany like a Commodore 64 browser emulator.

Users annoyed by a particular Web author’s design preferences, or who suffers from visual impairments, can now get an easy fix in Opera. By choosing style sheets such as "Accessibility layout" or "High contrast B/W" users can in a snap modify pages for an easy read.

Developers immediately benefit from features such as viewing structural elements without constantly reverting to its source code, or just clicking for a page’s outline for easy debugging.

Fans of good old text browsing can get excited over the new text-browser emulator, one of the many options available.

New navigation bar
On sites that support navigation through link tags, users have more control over how they interact with Web pages. The site navigation will be displayed in the navigation bar, and the navigation menu will feel the same to the user regardless of site.

Sleek new look
Enjoy a new user interface with 3D buttons and enhanced alphablended effects.

Hotlist
Bookmarks and history, windows sessions and e-mail can now be managed via the Hotlist and shown respectively as a bookmarks, history, e-mail, or windows panel. Manage your downloads and transfers via the floatable download and transfer manager with extensive drag-and-drop support.

Skinning
Changing the look of a browser has never been easier with Opera’s new one-click skin install. Just pick and click once on any of the many skins available online. The skin is downloaded and applied, and users can choose to keep or remove the new skin.

As a further enhancement, even changes in the coloring of skins can be altered by selecting a color scheme from the View menu.

Window management
Instead of having to choose between multiple and single document interface (MDI/SDI) as in Opera 6, users can now combine MDI, SDI and tabbed browsing—without restarting the browser. Users can also save different window combinations as window sessions, or go back and forth between different window sessions.

Multiple or single user accounts
Set up different Opera user profiles in one Opera browser to ensure that all your family members have the Opera set-up and look that suits them best.

Extended and improved drag-and-drop support
Rearrange or move toolbar items using drag-and-drop customization or move bookmarks, tabs, and window sessions (MDI/SDI) URL as shortcuts on the desktop. Open or save any page link.

Powerful panel management
All panels can now be shown, hidden or rearranged at will.

Standards-compliance
Opera continues its commitment to the standards as laid out by the W3C. Opera 7.0 for Windows supports the following technologies: 128-bit encryption, TLS 1.0, SSL 2 and 3, CSS1 and CSS2, XML, HTML 4.01, HTTP 1.1, ECMAScript, JavaScript 1.3, WAP/WML and DOM level 2.

Availability
The browser is available free of charge with a sponsored advertising banner in the top-right corner of the user interface. To remove the advertising banner users must register their version for USD 39. Various discounts apply.

As a new feature in Opera 7, a user’s first download is rewarded with 14 banner-free days. If the user then chooses to register, the advertising banner is permanently removed. In addition, registered users can freely access personal support via e-mail and enjoy six months of free OperaMail Premium, the latter starting the day the final version of Opera 7 is released.

Download
Download Opera 7 for Windows today from www.opera.com.

About Opera Software ASA
Opera Software ASA is an industry leader in the development of Web browser technology, partnering with companies such as IBM, AMD, Nokia, Macromedia, Symbian, Canal+ Technologies, Ericsson, Sharp and Lineo (now Embedix). The Opera browser has received international recognition from users, industry experts and media for being faster, smaller and more standards-compliant than other browsers. Opera’s browser technology is cross-platform and modular, targeting the desktop, smartphone, PDA, iTV and vertical markets.

Opera Software ASA is a privately held company headquartered in Oslo, Norway, with development centers in Linköping and Gothenburg, Sweden, and a representative in Austin, TX. Learn more about Opera at www.opera.com.

09:21 am, pst18 December, 2002 Comments, Trackbacks ·

Categories: Browsers, CSS, Press Releases, Software, Standards, Technology

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