A few days ago, Opera released an early Christmas Present for the avid group of people following the opera.beta newsgroup, and the “Opera Beta forum”:http://my.opera.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?s=&forumid=31.
Opera released a preview version of Opera 7.50, both for “Windows”:http://my.opera.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=39541 and “Linux and FreeBSD”:http://my.opera.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=39518. There are some major changes in this new version:
* UI cleanup: The UI in Opera has been seriously cleaned up. There are fewer buttons. There is more space dedicated to the browser viewport, and the menus are far more logical than in earlier releases. Much more beginner-friendly, but if you are a long-time Opera-user, you have some unlearning to do.
* Improved panel/sidebars: Panels can now be maximized, and there is a new Start panel that will give inexperiences/non-tech users easier access to Opera.
* Newsfeeds: Opera now has support for RSS 0.91/1.0/2.0 and it’s all integrated into the perhaps smoothest mail/news ride in the world: M2.
* Chat: Opera now has the beginning of a chat backend. The first protocol supported is IRC.
* Spelling checker: It is now possible to use Opera with the ASpell spelling checker, both in mails and in web forms.
* M2: The M2 backend has undergone some major changes that makes it faster than anything I’ve seen. I’ve attempted searching through around 100 000 mails, and I have gotten my results in less than a second.
* Learning message filters: In M2, you can now use learning message filters both for your spam and for your other mails.
Remember: This Opera version is a preview version, and I have the following pieces of advice:
* Do not test it unless you are willing to report bugs, and follow the forums or newsgroups.
* Do not install it on top of older Opera releases. The warning you get on installing if you try, *is* serious.
* You can import your mail/news and accounts by copying your mail folder from an earlier install. You should, given the beta status, set M2 in 7.50 to *leave mail on the server*, and fetch it into the old M2 every once in a while.
In light of the recent “MyOpera”:http://my.opera.com/ redesign, I have decided to also keep a journal at their servers, pretty much dedicated to the Opera browser. So, please visit “Yet I cannot look away”:http://my.opera.com/virtuelvis/journal. The journal of course has it’s own RSS feed.
Merry christmas, everyone!