I recently installed IE7, and for a lot of reasons, didn’t like it much. I’ve never managed to get along well with Firefox, but after spending some time with Opera, found that it worked pretty well for me. There’s a lot it doesn’t do – I do keep IE7 and Firefox both available as well, but I decided to use Opera as my primary browser. Given that Opera imported my IE bookmarks and that I only ever let IE save the passwords I didn’t care much about (things that I don’t really consider very secret, like my logins to sites where I have to register just to read an article), I figured the hardest part about converting would be retraining my fingers.
It turned out I had let IE save a lot more passwords than I’d thought. I haven’t been keeping formal count, but I’m pretty sure I’ve found over 30 so far, and I know I haven’t hit them all. Fortunately, I’d also recorded all the passwords in eWallet (in the Category I call “junk regs”), so it was just a matter of re-entering them all into Opera. But I was surprised – I would have thought I would have saved maybe 10 in IE. eWallet really saved me a lot of trouble on this one.
Why I like Opera – it seems to me a lot faster than IE7 and Firefox. I like tabbed browsing, and the built-in newsreader and RSS reader, but most of all, I like being able to search in my bookmarks, being able to pick “author mode” when I don’t like a page’s fonts and colors, and how configurable it is.
Why I don’t like it – it doesn’t support Web 2.0 very well, resized graphics look pretty awful, and I still end up surprised (at best) or puzzled (at worst) about where a window went or how to get back to one. But overall, it’s my current favorite. If you’re not happy with your current browser option, it’s definitely worth a look. Be sure you’ve got all your passwords, though!
(And, on an almost completely unrelated side-note, this preview is the funniest thing I’ve seen in a long time. The reason it’s slightly related is that probably only people who are familiar with the kind of opera that involves singing, classical music, and live performers will find it funny.)
And, yes, we will be fixing our site so it looks better in the newer browsers. And I’m hoping that we’ll be able to extend eWallet’s AutoPass feature to work in other browsers as well as the IE ones.