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Opinion Editorials

Vivaldi: New browser for power users (and most haven’t heard of it)

For people who use the hell out of their browsers and know it, there’s a new option on the market that no one seems to know about: Vivaldi.




Seek and You Shall Find (a new browser): Vivaldi

Vivaldi. Wow. Does the world really need another browser? Not for me to say, but it seems like there are so many browsers out there that the market has evolved into one of a niche product. 

Vivaldi is being marketed as a browser for the “power user.” You know, the person who wants to be in control of their experience and customize it to their liking. I’m not necessarily sure that type of segment exists any more. And if it does, it really narrows the scope of who Vivaldi is being marketed for, because Vivaldi boasts many features the average user is unlikely to need or even be aware of. But I don’t want to get ahead of myself.

What’s old is new again

Vivaldi works on Windows, OS X, and Linux (there are even .deb and .rpm downloads available for easy installation on Linux). Vivaldi is being touted as “a brand new Web browser that wants to bring back all the old features of Opera 12 and then some.”

That didn’t mean anything to me until I checked out Opera 12 and discovered that O12 was yet another browser that was being bandied about as fast, smart and unique. Vivaldi takes the Opera 12 template and looks to improve on it. Which is not that difficult as it is produced by the same group of people.

Customize, customize, customize

The big selling point of Vivaldi is customizing it the way you want it. For example, the Vivaldi web browser lets you do things your way by adapting to you and not the other way around. You prefer the browser tabs placed at the bottom or on the side of the window? You prefer a different address bar location? You can customize all your preferences be it your keyboard shortcuts, mouse gestures, appearance and so on. I’m thinking maybe you can do that with Chrome, Yahoo or MSN but it’s all about variety I guess.

What is cool is that Vivaldi allows you to take notes and add screen shots of web pages while browsing, store attachments and add URL’s to easily organize and locate it later. Seriously, it’s the one that jumped out at me. As my memory gets worse with the passage of time it’s nice to know that I can see what the heck it is I saved to my favorites.

And a whole lot more

Based on my free download I will give Vivaldi an A for effort. Like a lot of new sheriffs that ride into town, the big V is going to need time to catch on. I’m not completely enamored with it. I mean, I like Google Chrome and I even enjoy going back to Yahoo every now and again. Vivaldi for its part offers users email, bookmarks and special navigation. Not to mention multi-computer synch capabilities. There’s also a split-screen mode that I am impressed with.

According to Opera Software co-founder and former CEO Jon von Tetzchner, “The browser we once loved has changed its direction. Sadly, it is no longer serving its community of users and contributors: who helped build the browser in the first place. So we came to a natural conclusion: we must make a new browser. A browser for ourselves and for our friends. A browser that is fast, but also a browser that is rich in functionality, highly flexible and puts the user first.

Kind of like being invited to private party. I hope they have onion dip.


Nearly three decades living and working all over the world as a radio and television broadcast journalist in the United States Air Force, Staff Writer, Gary Picariello is now retired from the military and is focused on his writing career.

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  1. Gabe Sanders

    January 3, 2016 at 10:38 am

    Thanks Gary. This may just be the browser solution I’ve been waiting for. I will give it a try.

  2. I.M. Pistoff

    February 10, 2016 at 8:24 pm

    I used Opera through 6.0.5, after which it went to hell, then again in the 9s, after which it went to hell again. Supposedly, one of the many reasons von Tetzchner started Vivaldi was that longtime Opera users were unhappy about the switch from Presto to Blink; yet, here we are at 1.0.344.37 (Beta 2), and still using Blink, making it not substantially (if at all) different from any other Chromium-based browser of choice, so what exactly is the point? I see nothing about it that would make me switch from SlimJet, which is not my primary browser anyway. Meanwhile, Pale Moon has further evolved from its progenitor Firefox by switching to the Goanna rendering engine; it’s performance equals or exceeds anything Chromium-based that i’ve ever used, with fewer quirks and less resource use.

    • RRR13

      May 15, 2016 at 4:15 pm

      I see why you are pistoff: you didn’t understand why and how Vivaldi was created.
      Vivaldi was not created because Opera went to Blink.
      Vivaldi was created because Opera dropped almost all the features that made Opera be… well… Opera, AND NOT INTENDING TO BRING THEM BACK.
      Vivaldi aims at bringing back those very features. The vast majority of them are not conditioned my the rendering engine used by the browser. Also, creating and maintaining a rendering engine is HARD BACK BREAKING WORK. That’s why Opera gave up on Presto. That’s why Vivaldi going with Blink is a good idea, at least for now (most likely forever, but, hey, the future is open-ended). Maybe when Vivaldi will become a one thousand people company, it will make sense to write their own engine, but now, they have to do with whatever is already available and will be MAINTAINED indefinitely. As Jon von Tetzchner himself said it, they “went with the safer choice”.

      There! Feeling better? 😀

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Opinion Editorials

Mantras to help you cope with COVID-19 anxieties

(EDITORIAL) COVID-19 has cause a lot of wierd changes to everyday life, and with unexpected changes can come serious anxiety. Here’s a couple ways to deal with it.



COVID-19 anxiety

COVID-19 is stressful. Yeah, okay, that’s stating (and probably understating) the obvious, but it’s worth talking about the anxiety that this new normal has brought with it. Whether you have anxiety disorder or you’re just generally anxious because of all the sudden changes that COVID-19 has brought with it, it’s worth talking about ways you can cope, beyond the usual advice of “exercise, eat healthy, get sleep.”

I mean, yes. Try to do that too. But we’ve got some mental techniques that might help. Mantras, if you will, that could be helpful when coping with the stress of this situation seems to be too tough.

“I made it through something before.”

It can be really easy to get swept up in the powerless feeling that comes along with something this big and out of our control. As an individual, you might not be able to turn the tides of the virus or the affects it’s having on daily life, but you do have control over yourself. And human beings are tough. Even if we don’t feel like it.

One way to remind yourself of this power is to remember a time you overcame another obstacle. Whether it’s something big, like unemployment or the death of a loved one, or a smaller challenge, like getting a bad grade or losing something you treasured, visualize not just the problem, but how you got through it. Remember the strength and patience you had in overcoming the challenge.

Then take another deep breath and let yourself feel comforted by the knowledge that you’ve done hard things before. You can do them again.

“I couldn’t have planned for this.”

If you’re like me, it can be easy to get stressed out about unplanned occurrences. I prefer to plan in advance for things – especially big changes – and as someone who moved to a brand new city right before this pandemic blew up, well, all my plans went out the window. Sure, you might not be trying to make it in an entirely new environment during this upheaval, but chances are, some of your plans have gotten waylaid as well.

Which is why it’s important to remind yourself that you couldn’t really have planned for this. Think about it, a year ago, would this ever have entered into your five year plan? Absolutely not! You planned for a pandemic-free future, which was perfectly reasonable. If your anxiety is stemming from the feeling that you “could have, should have” done something differently, take a deep breath and remind yourself it’s not your fault.

Then take another deep breath, and let yourself feel comforted by the knowledge that something of this scale changing your plans does not reflect your skill or value as an individual.

“This, too, will pass.”

It can be really hard to visualize this thing being over. I mean, have you heard the joke that March seemed to last a whole year? In all seriousness, though, with so much changing so quickly and no definite answer of when shut-downs will end, it can feel overwhelming, but as cliche as it might sound, this trouble will end too. So it’s worth taking a deep breath in the face of this uncertainty to remember that it will be over one day.

Then take another deep breath and let yourself feel comforted by the knowledge that while it’s challenging now, in the moment, it won’t always be this way.

Anxiety often leaves us trapped in our uncertainty and fear. If these phrases don’t work to ease your worry, it’s worth keeping an eye out for something that will. Because we can all benefit from taking a moment to take some deep breaths and remind ourselves that even though it’s a scary time right now, we’re going to make it through.

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Opinion Editorials

How Gen X is nailing the COVID-19 social distancing order

(EDITORIAL) Of course, someone found a way to bring up generational stereotyping during COVID-19 and claim who is best, but are they onto something?



Demographics and categorizing people helps us to process groups. A huge part of demographics and how we market ourselves in a job search, for example, is sharing our level of experiences and skill sets related to our profession – thus alluding to our age. Millennials (b. 1981-1996) received a lot of generational shame for being elitist and growing up in a time where they all received participation trophies – therefore being judged for not always winning a fair competition.

Gen X (roughly b. 1961-1981) has often commented that they feel like the forgotten generation which so much attention being play to the Baby Boomers (b. 1946-1964) who seemed to be born in to a great time of prosperity for “The American Dream” and then the Millennials who overtook Gen X and some of their jobs while they weren’t enough Gen Xers to fill them.

In this article “It Took a Global Pandemic, But Generation X is Finally Getting Love”, it is discussed how great Gen X is at this social distancing thing and maybe this will be helpful to anyone who feels like they are losing their mind. This is by no means an intent to shame any generation nor claim no one else knows how to handle it but this article does a great job about why Gen X might be primed to be handling the global pandemic well with the times they were raised in.

Right now, it’s a waiting game for many people who’s professions and lives have changed in what seemed like overnight. The patience required. The uncertainty of it all. The global pandemic forced (without any forgiveness), a swift move to new ways of life. The busy-ness of our days came to a crashing halt when we were no longer allowed to be out and about in places with large groups and possibly sent home to work remotely.

Many non-essential businesses were forced to close which meant people could not only not work at the office, but also had to cease their extra-curricular activities like working out at the gym, shopping, eating brunch with friends or taking their kids to their sporting events, a playground and/or coordinating a play date or sleepover. The directive from our local and federal government was for “social distancing” before the shelter in place orders came.

Gen X may agree that there were some pretty great things about their childhood – the types of things you do with your time because you don’t have a smartphone or tablet addiction and the fact that there was no way for your work to get a hold of you 24/7. Gen X did have TV and video games and sure, Mom and Dad didn’t really want you spending all of your time behind a screen but it also seemed that there wasn’t as much of a guilt trip if you did spend some of your “summer vacation” from school playing Nintendo or Sega with your neighborhood friends.

It seems like the article alludes to the idea that COVID might be helping people to get back to some of those basics before smartphones became as important to us as one of our limbs.

Gen X has had no problem adapting to technology and in their careers, they have had to adapt to many new ways of doing things (remember when caller ID came out and it was no longer a surprise who was calling?! Whaaaat?! And you can’t prank call anyone any more with your teenage friends at a sleepover! Gasp! You also wouldn’t dare TP an ex-boyfriend’s house right now).

Regardless of the need to learn new hard skills and technologies, everyone has been forced to adjust their soft skills like how technology and still being a human can play well together (since it is really nice to be able to FaceTime with loved ones far away). It seems those slightly unquantifiable adaptable and flexible skills are even more required now. It also seems that as you grow in your career, Emotional Intelligence might be your best skill in these uncertain times.

And not that we are recommending eating like crap or too many unhealthy items, Gen X has been known to be content surviving on Pop Tarts, Spaghetti O’s, Ding-dongs and macaroni and cheese which are all pretty shelf stable items right now. Whatever way is possible for you, it might be a good time to find the balance again in work, technology, home, rest, relaxation and education if at all possible.

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Opinion Editorials

How strong leaders use times of crises to improve their company’s future

(EDITORIAL) We’re weeks into the COVID-19 crisis, and some leaders are fumbling through it, while others are quietly safeguarding their company’s future.



strong leaders

Anthony J. Algmin is the Founder and CEO of Algmin Data Leadership, a company helping business and technology leaders transform their future with data, and author of a new book on data leadership. We asked for his insights on how a strong leader can see their teams, their companies, their people through this global pandemic (and other crises in the future). The following are his own words:

Managers sometimes forget that the people we lead have lives outside of the office. This is true always, but is amplified when a crisis like COVID-19 occurs. We need to remember that our job is to serve our teams, to help them be as aligned and productive as possible in the short and long terms. 
Crises are exactly when we need to think about what they might be going through, and realize that the partnership we have with our employees is more than a transaction. If we’ve ever asked our people to make sacrifices, like working over a weekend without extra pay, we should be thinking first about how we can support them through the tough times. When we do right by people when they really need it, they will run through walls again for our organizations when things return to normal.

Let them know it’s okay to breathe and talk about it. In a situation like COVID-19 where everything is disrupted and people are now adjusting to things like working from home, it is naturally going to be difficult and frustrating.
The best advice is to encourage people to turn off the TV and stop frequently checking the news websites. As fast as news is happening, it will not make a difference in what we can control ourselves. Right now most of us know what our day will look like, and nothing that comes out in the news is going to materially change it. If we avoid the noisy inputs, we’ll be much better able to focus and get our brains to stop spinning on things we can’t control.
And this may be the only time I would advocate for more meetings. If you don’t have at least a daily standup with your team, you should. And encourage everyone to have a video-enabled setup if at all possible. We may not be able to be in the same room, but the sense of engagement with video is much greater than audio-only calls.
We also risk spiraling if we think too much about how our companies are struggling, or if our teams cannot achieve what our organizations need to be successful. It’s like the difference in sports between practice and the big game. Normal times are when we game plan, we strategize, and work on our fundamentals. Crises are the time to focus and leave it all on the field.
That said, do not fail to observe and note what works well and where you struggle. If you had problems with data quality or inefficient processes before the crisis, you are not fixing them now. Pull out the duct tape and find a way through it. But later, when the crisis subsides, learn from the experience and get better for next time.

Find a hobby. Anything you can do to clear your head and separate work from the other considerations in your life. We may feel like the weight of the world is on our shoulders, and without a pressure release we will not be able to sustain this level of stress and remain as productive as our teams, businesses, and families need us.

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