Kestrel's new shortcuts, why and what
Tuesday, September 4, 2007 8:52:41 AM
Yippee, Kestrel's finally out. As buggy alpha for now, remember! You are best of testing this in a seperate installation, installing in a new directory does that trick. If you decide to upgrade, you really want to have a backup of mail (and bookmarks, wand, cookies etc if these are important for you).
Among many else, this release aims to become more usable out of the box. That means no surprising non-obvious shortcuts where you need to read the documentation to figure out how to get your normal browser back after pressing the wrong key by accident. Yes, this did happen. Quite a lot. Our Elektrans testers made it very clear that power users will dearly miss some of the one-key shortcuts like 1/2 for tab switching and z/x for navigation. So we've also thought of a way to ship with those power shortcuts in a forward-compatible manner (shipping with an extra 'classic' keyboard setup will bring problems for us later). You can find the new switch to turn these shortcuts on under 'Tools > Preferences > Advanced > Shortcuts'.
Now, what changes did we make, and why? There's a complete official list of changes available (edit: updated the link to point to the beta 2 version). And here's a list of reasons:
- Several keyboard shortcuts have been changed or added for better cross-browser compatability.
- All single letter and single number keyboard shortcuts have been removed. These one-key shortcuts are powerful, but also caused serious problems for many users. For most of them alternatives are available. They can also be switched on separately in the Preferences.
- All Shift+letter and Shift+number keyboard shortcuts have been changed or removed for the same reasons.
- All Alt+letter keyboard shortcuts have been changed or removed. These keyboard shortcuts are not compatible with many Opera localizations, because Alt+letter is used to access the main menu. Exceptions: Alt+P and the new Alt+D, both available for historical reasons. Preferred alternatives are available for the actions they perform.
- All Ctrl+Alt+letter keyboard shortcuts have been changed or removed. Windows user interface guidelines reserve these shortcuts for system wide use and as alternative input method for some keyboards.
- Keyboard shortcuts for seldomly used features have been removed, including two series of shortcuts that didn't show in the normal user interface: Ctrl+Shift+number shortcuts for 'manage' pages and Site Navigation keyboard shortcuts (think
<link rel=home ...>)
- Duplicated keyboard shortcuts that served no purpose anymore have been removed, those that were needed for compliance to operating systems guidelines have been made specific for those operating systems.