Opera Dragonfly visual refresh

By David Storey

The Opera Dragonfly team is hard at work on the first stable release. Just as dragonflies metamorphose from ugly larva into beautiful dragonflies, we are in the process of redefining our user interface.

One of the key goals of the UI redesign is to make our features more discoverable. Features such as CSS editing and auto-completion have been implemented for quite a while now, but many users miss them. We want to optimize the workflow for common tasks, and make the UI more visual attractive.

The redesign and implementation is still work in progress, but we’d like to share with you where were are currently at. Much of the UI framework design is close to final, while the modes themselves are still in the process of being redesigned. Much of the UX changes are also yet to be implemented, such as the editing discoverability and context menu support.

We have prepared a Opera Dragonfly UI preview to show the design direction we are aiming for. We are also pushing our nightly builds of Opera Dragonfly to the public. This will allow developers to experiment with the changes we are making, and allow potential open source contributors to see the very bleeding edge developments. You can access the experimental version by entering opera:config#DeveloperTools|DeveloperToolsURL in the URL field, and changing the path to https://dragonfly.opera.com/app/stp-1/experimental/ . Once you save the change, Opera Dragonfly will upgrade to the latest version. Unlike our regular and cutting-edge paths, this version is not for daily use. It can and will break at any time as it is our working copy.

We’d also like to reveal the roadmap for our Opera Dragonfly 1.0 release. This highlights the features we’d like to implement before Opera Dragonfly becomes a stable 1.0 release. This will also help open source developers know what we are planning.

We hope that you enjoy the direction we are going with Opera Dragonfly, and would love your feedback, both positive and negative. Post your feedback on Twitter with the #dragonfly hash tag, and feel free to contact me at @dstorey if you have any questions. You can also leave comments and questions on the Opera Dragonfly forums . For anyone who wishes to contribute to Opera Dragonfly you can head over to the source code repository on BitBucket .

To open Opera Dragonfly, right click on a web page and select Inspect Element .

David Storey heads up the Open the Web initiative at Opera. This small global team is tasked with improving the compatibility of web sites across Opera's wide range of browsers, as well as promoting web standards, accessibility and best practices, so that the Web will work for all standards-aware browsers, platforms, devices and users. He is a member of the W3C Mobile Web Best Practices Working Group.

On his blog, Slightly Ajar, he discusses this work, as well as random topics, from travel to music.

David previously worked for CERN, home of the World Wide Web, before taking up his post at Opera Software.


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