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With the release of version 5.10 of the greatest web browser of all time, Opera, a new concept was introduced to the web surfing public. Gesture based navigation. This means that several common tasks, like going back in surfing history and reloading a page can be achieved with few gestures with the mouse. Going back, for instance, is achieved by clicking the right mouse button, and moving the mouse leftwards. Reloading is handled by right-clicking, moving up and then down.

The basic idea is not new though. Blender, the popular freeware 3D modelling program has had it for years. There is also a program for Windows called Sensiva, that allows the user to define gestures for opening programs and performing several predefined commands.

When applied to web surfing, it quickly becomes quite addictive. Now, when I use Internet Explorer to view the pages Opera displays incorrectly, I constantly get accidental context sensitive menus as I try to apply gestures. Hopefully Netscape/Mozilla and Microsoft will add gestures to their respective browsers.

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