The People’s browser: Allen Day

To celebrate the release of Vivaldi 2.0, we publish several stories of Vivaldi users who talk about how Vivaldi has impacted the world of browsers, and their lives.

From curious kid to student dabbling with HTML, to a tour as a Navy cryptologist, to developer, to CTO – the trajectory of Allen Day’s life traces back to the humble, ubiquitous web browser, and ultimately Vivaldi. This is his story:

“These days, it’s easy to take the web browser for granted. It’s ubiquitous. For most people, it’s pass through. It’s nothing more than a window to the web. If you think about it, it’s almost offensive that it’s called a browser when we’re living on the web, not browsing.

Of course, Vivaldi isn’t made for those who take things for granted. It’s not made for the casual browser. It’s made for another class of user, users who use with intention and for whom user experience matters.

A looking glass into another dimension

My first web browser was, of course, Internet Explorer – like so many of my generation. And I did not take it for granted even then, it was magical. It was a looking glass into another dimension. With Internet Explorer, I discovered Netscape Navigator. With Netscape Navigator, I discovered HTML and learned to reverse engineer the web. And then with Netscape Navigator, I discovered Opera.

While it took an afternoon to download Netscape Navigator Gold on a modem, Opera fit on a floppy disc – what a feat of engineering! I had a floppy disc that I carried around with Opera on it, so I could secretly use it when I was at school. My closest friends caught on and begged copies, I gladly complied. I was the only kid I knew who had paid for software online. I treasured my license code. That little piece of software was gold to me.

Picked web development as a profession

My curiosity led to expertise, I became a web developer. Cross browser testing was part of my routine, so I knew every browser inside and out. Opera was the one closest to my heart, the browser I used when I just wanted to be online. I established a routine – Opera for play, other browsers for everything else.

Then Opera lost me when they became a Chrome clone. I ended up just using Chrome. And then the web browser was just a web browser, a window to the web, a thing to be taken for granted.

Vivaldi was a breath of fresh air. It was, at once, something entirely new and something familiar. With Jon at the helm, there was immediate trust. This was a return to comfort. Most people can’t understand how a piece of software could mean so much to me, but that’s okay. I think you and Jon and the community you’ve built can.

Today, I’m the Chief Technology Officer at a lovely little online company. 

I can’t take my browser for granted. I’m grateful to have Vivaldi in my life, a browser I can appreciate, care about and share. Thank you, and please pass my sincere gratitude to Jon and the team.”

— Allen Day, CTO @ 9 Clouds, dad at home, U.S.A.

Photo by Thomas Kvistholt on Unsplash.

* * *

Is Vivaldi more than a window to the web to you? Did it help you get through the dark times of web browsers? Or maybe you pursue your livelihood in Vivaldi? Tell us in the comments.

Get away from Big Tech and have fun doing it

Download Vivaldi