Ubuntu / Linux news and application reviews.

While I'm not certain I would call what Opera has done with Unite (version 10 of its browser) a reinvention of the web, it's certainly a clever, inventive twist on the run-of-the-mill web browser.

Unite sits in Opera's side toolbar and adds various server features to the browser. By default it includes file, media, and photo sharing, a web server, chat room, and "fridge" for storing notes. There are no additional Unite services available yet, though it's safe to assume that community-produced options will start appearing soon.

You configure your sharing options - choose a base directory, set access permissions - and Opera provides a URL you can provide to your friends. Sure, there are hundreds of websites we already use to share media, leave each other messages, and chat, but Opera Unite lets you do it with a single registration and without uploading any of your content to a remote server.

Unite's sharing pages render just fine in other browsers, so you friends don't have to be running Opera. As with previous Opera releases, it's available for Windows, Linux, and Mac.

The browser itself hasn't changed - it's still Opera 10, love it or hate it. The new Unite functions are very clever and do add a certain amount of cool factor. It will be interesting to see if the new features can increase the size Opera's fan base.