Kavin send me an email recently asking me if there was a site for Opera add-ons similar to the highly popular Firefox add-ons website. Yes there is such a website for Opera. Add-ons in Opera are called Widgets instead and it puzzles me every time why Opera is hiding that Widgets site so perfectly when you visit the main Opera website. Can anyone tell me how you can reach the Widgets website from the main Opera website ? I really can't find the way. A search for Opera Widgets on Google reveals the subdomain that gives access to all the widgets created for Opera.
If you run Opera you can use the Widgets menu to Add Widgets which will load the Opera Widgets website as well. The main difference between Firefox add-ons and Opera widgets is the fact that Opera widgets run outside of the browser as separate windows which is sometimes a blessing and sometimes an annoyance. Take the Google Toolbar widget for Opera for instance. It runs independently of Opera which means that you can use it even if Opera is minimized. But, if you position it and make it stay on top and change the window size of Opera it will be in front of other elements on your desktop that you might need.
It's great for all kinds of things but not that great if you want to integrate an element in Opera directly. Say you want to check the Google Pagerank of a website. Firefox simply adds the information in the status bar, in Opera you have your own window floating around that is either always on top - which does mean that it will still be on top if you minimize Opera, or hidden behind new windows that get opened.
I'm not an Opera expert and it would be great if someone else could tell me if there was a way to integrate widgets directly into Opera. Or if there were some sort of add-ons that could be integrated into Opera.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.