I try to dedicate Fridays to entertainment/media related posts in the spirit of the upcoming weekend. Today, I have something for you that is pretty exciting and takes web browsers into the next league.
I use TVersity media server to stream music, movies and pictures in my computer to my Sony Bravia via Playstation 3. Tversity can even stream your media onto the Internet and you can access it from anywhere and from any web enabled device.
But, this required running a dedicated software in your computer. I don’t run it all the time and have to get into my computer through LogMeIn and turn it on when I am away.
Opera is one of the leading web browsers and with the Labs release of Opera Unite they have turned a web browser into a powerful web server. I am so excited about Firefox 3.5 but Opera has its own good things going for it.
With Opera Unite, anyone can serve and share content directly from their own computers in the form of intuitive applications. Instead of locking it down to certain features, Opera has opened up this feature to developers so they can develop services. The platform for developers offers choices only limited by your imagination.
The best thing is that it needs no special software but just Opera running on any device – be it desktops, laptops or even mobile devices.
Oh, you do need a Opera account to share your stuff with friends and family. Once you sign up for an account, you get to name your computer and you get a unique and easy to share website address for your computer. For eg. You’d get http://home.jackson.operaunite.com
if your user id was jackson.
It’s that easy!
Opera Unite Services
Opera Unite comes loaded with a few services pre-installed.
- Photo Sharing - self-explanatory. You start the service and select the folder with pictures to share.
- The Lounge – You can host your own chatroom! Friends can chat with you from any browser. Just send the unique URL you get when you click invite to your friends. You can even password protect for additional security.
- Web Server – You can serve up HTML files directly from your computer! No PHP, MySQL support so you can’t run your WordPress or Drupal from there.
- File Sharing – self-explanatory.
- Media Player – Your friends and family can listen to your MP3 files you shave shared in this folder.
- Fridge – The most fun service of all. Your friends can leave a note for you on your virtual fridge.
All these services can be opened up for public access or limited access protected by unique passwords for each service or totally private and just for your use.
Opera Unite can be a great tool for anyone who don’t want to install special software for sharing files, music or host a chatroom. I am definitely going to be using this in the days to come. But, just be wary of using it while you are online as it can suck up your bandwidth pretty quick but great for at times when you are not home.
Opera Unite is a Labs release but it worked fine in my testing without crashing. It is available as a free download for Windows, Mac & Linux.