Vivaldi 2.0 Perfection

  • First off congratulations to the Vivaldi team on the 1.0 release. As a web developer I can personally attest software development isn't a simple process. While not yet everything I need just yet I really like the direction the browser is evolving towards. I know the spirit of Vivaldi is to create a customizable browser and in order to do that you need input from power users who disagree. Why? Because the more power users that disagree on preferences while also being happier about the browser then the more successful a product has become. A power user will go through [i]every[/i] option and push the boundaries of customization though with a few suggestions [i]how[/i] to make a browser considered customizable doesn't have to be an unattainable goal. Currently I use a [i]very[/i] heavily modified version of Firefox that I call [b]Fixed Firefox[/b]. I ignore the petty 42 day releases and use the 54-week ESR only. One of the major problems is that Mozilla has forgotten that the whole point of switching from work on Mozilla Suite to Mozilla Firefox was to create a customizable browser. Not only has Firefox become exceptionally difficult for non-technical people to customize they have also made several releases that completely disregarded and disrupted profiles (where the customization settings are stored) for existing versions of Firefox. The key is to get the customization options in early. I think with the given time thus far, adding the Classic Opera options has gone well and with the right approach future versions of Vivaldi can not only meet though exceed Classic Opera's customization options which did unfortunately have limitations due to some bugs. [b]Customizable Toolbars[/b] Classic Opera had the ability to move any toolbar to the top, right, bottom or left side of the browser. What it didn't have was the option to adjust the order of toolbars. As can be seen in the partial screenshot I've attached I prefer my browser controls [i]over[/i] the address bar and the tab bar; it signifies that [i]I[/i] have control over the browser and websites, not vice-versa. However other people may have various preferences. Enter [b]LibreOffice[/b]! Small handles on the left side of each toolbar allow the toolbars in LibreOffice to be arranged according to how the user wishes to sort the toolbars. Not only moving a toolbar above or below on the top/bottom of the browser though also to the left/right for toolbars on the left/right sides should make moving whole sets of button shortcuts around very easy for any skill level of a user. [b]Customizable Buttons[/b] It's no longer 1998 where having a 1280x1024 screen makes you the king of the office. Generally speaking screens got wider and the resolution has increased dramatically. One of the great features of Classic Opera was the ability to mix up sets of options: - Icons only. - Text only. - Icons with text on the side. - Icons with text below. Again, as can be seen in the attached screenshot I use a widescreen / landscape orientation so having text with icons on the side makes the buttons easier to press (more area to require less refined mouse movement). Some users prefer the portrait mode where the height is greater than the width (monitor adjusted by 90 degrees) so they may prefer icons with text below (Windows Explorer in Windows 98 and to a lesser degree Windows XP and IE6). The button settings [i]should[/i] be based on individual toolbars like Classic Opera though disabling that and applying the setting universally may not hurt (or even having that by default until the individual toolbar work can be completed). [b]Available Buttons[/b] Don't over-think and try to do something "smooth" like combine two or more buttons, more users loathe that than will appreciate it. Every browser needs a certain minimal set of buttons available for users to easily achieve their goals. [u]Main Toolbar[/u] [ul] [li]Back[/li] [li]Forward[/li] [li]Reload[/li] [li]Stop[/li] [li]Home[/li] [li]Bookmarks [Drop-Down][/li] [li]Bookmarks [Shortcut to Sidebar][/li] [li]Downloads [Drop-down][/li] [li]Downloads [Shortcut to Sidebar][/li] [li]Fullscreen[/li] [li]History [Drop-Down][/li] [li]History [Shortcut to Sidebar][/li] [li]New Tab[/li] [li]New Window[/li] [li]Restore Tab [Opera Classic and Vivaldi!][/li] [li]Sign-In [Opera Classic!][/li] [li]Web Development[/li] [/ul] [u]Address Bar[/u] [ul] [li]Go Button[/li] [li]Paste & Go Button[/li] [/ul] [u]Search Bar[/u] [ul] [li]Search Button[/li] [li]Paste & Search Button[/li] [/ul] [u]Find Bar[/u] [ul] [li]Find Next[/li] [li]Find Previous[/li] [li]Highlight All[/li] [li]Match Case[/li] [/ul] [u]Status Bar[/u] [ul] [li]Done/Address of focus/hover link[/li] [li]Download Count / Progress[/li] [li]Extensions[/li] [/ul] [b]Customizable Drop-Down Menus[/b] I've got folders in the bookmarks toolbar in Firefox for quicker access though when a set of bookmarks would require too much toolbar space. It should be easy for a user to create a folder and move bookmarks (or even commands). Want to make this [i]really[/i] shine? Don't require a click action, a simple mouse-over event would negate the need to click though some users may prefer an option to re-enable clicking on folders as that option may annoy some users. [b]Tab Groups[/b] Bookmarks are a long term commitment though sometimes you'll leave tabs option and well, they just get a bit excessive. Firefox's Tab Groups (minus it unnecessary animation) is a great way to leave a working set of tabs open (without them loading until you click the tab). Want to strike a balance between having tabs open though not using up much memory? Moving the mouse over a tab could preemptively start loading the tab in the background and if that option is created disabling it from occurring should be it's counter-option to respect the people it would drive to madness. [b]Vivaldi 2.0[/b] Some people may argue that some or much of what I'm suggesting doesn't fall under the needs of a power user though a power user isn't defined in the context of [i]how[/i] someone gets something done though through the fact that they are [i]effectively[/i] getting much done greatly aided by a customizable GUI and great all-round user experience. My web statistics still show more than [i]half[/i] of the original market share of Classic Opera users still hanging on for dear life waiting for something to supplement their browsing needs. I would personally be very delighted to switch should Vivaldi add these features due to the compromise between (difficult though still capable) customization of Firefox and Firefox's generally poor performance compared to Chrome. Vivaldi is becoming much less of a Chrome clone and I can't imagine the work being done is easy though the key thing is that it's getting done just like the work of power users. I hope that this thread reaches key decision makers and that they realize the value of power users and Classic Opera users. 🙂 Attachments: [img][/img]

  • Sounds lot like old Opera, haha. Don't worry, most of these features are coming 🙂

  • Moderator

    Don't fear about not getting these features.
    Jon von Tetzchner, the developers and testers team all knew about users coming from Ol' Opra and their wish to get old nice feeling This-is-my-Opra back. 😉
    I remember while rushing around in wish/bug tracker teher are mayn feature request and some features in progress.

    Stay tuned. Be patient. Vivaldi is for Users.

  • Thanks for the welcoming input guys. The key thing is input from a power user who understands other power users. While the attempt to make Opera customizable was made it was plagued with lots of bugs. It's always best to understand what users want to do with a browser and allowing that as early on as possible to set a precedent for future versions. Opera almost became my primary browser several times though customization issues always prevented that. With the emphasis taken off of the rendering engine the Vivaldi team can concentrate on the browser GUI/UX instead and that has my hopes up. 🙂


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