Missing a show twice

Saturday night. Josh called from Common Grounds to remind me to come to the Holopaw show. It’s a bit after 11, so I still have time to see them. When I get down there it’s some sort of free event and Neko Case is a surprise opener! She starts playing Buddy Holly’s “Baby Won’t You Come Out Tonight?” with the rockabilly “go baby, go baby…” and I’m thinking Kathleen needs to be here. Since she loves Holopaw I don’t know why she didn’t wanna come but I run toward the entrance to head out and go get her. When I get out in the parking lot I realize it’s raining and I’m not wearing shoes. I run back inside and start waiting in line to talk to the doorman, because CG has some weird policy now where you have to check your shoes in at the door. As I start to get frustrated, I wake up.

Not only do I miss the dream show with Neko Case and Holopaw, but I check the clock to see it’s past 5 and we’ve missed the real Holopaw show as well. My brain is mocking me! At least earlier that evening we got to see Neko Case on Austin City Limits (wow). I’m so pissed at myself because I’ve been waiting to see Holopaw for several months and I don’t know why I didn’t just buy an advanced ticket as a reminder.

Opera 9 thoughts

Opera 8’s UI really had most everything it needed to be a great browser (I haven’t upgraded at work and can barely tell the difference). 9’s big delivery is in the area of web standards (opacity, SVG, DOM Style) and hot proprietary ones like rich text editing, Flash-Javascript communication and the Canvas element. There are additions to write home about on the UI side as well (site-specific settings, content blocking), but the under-the-hood stuff above is what will truly allow a new Opera user to use the latest web sites they’re already used to without getting a broken/dumbed down interface or being flat out blocked.

The new widgets feature is surely meant as an answer to (or at least a distraction from) Firefox Extensions, but I think this move will only make it more apparent that people really want to customize their browsing experience rather than collect desktop gizmos. Even with all the headaches associated with dealing with managing Extensions (and upgrades)–and I’ve dealt with them from the Mozilla 0.9 days through Pheonix and now Firefox)–the modifications they can perform are staggering and impossible to ignore. Although extensions give you the power to wreck/destabilize your browser and make upgrading a pain, users now expect that power.

A couple things I’d personally like to see in Opera is a richer panel implementation and maybe some advanced Javascript extensions. Mozilla/Netscape7’s “sidebar” could’ve used a better control UI, but it allowed multiple panels to be visible simultaneously. I think if Opera encouraged web developers to develop panels with the same gusto as they promote widgets, they might prove more useful just because they live inside the browser where the user lives most of the time anyway! Maybe I need to create a slick panel as a proof of concept. In the Javascript area I’m thinking some extra interfaces available to bookmarklets (better persistant storage than document.cookie, local storage of JS libraries) could help make up for the lack of extensions. Just some ideas…