Opera to Deliver Betas of New Browser and Tools at SXSW

Opera Software will deliver betas of its new "Barracuda" browser and Dragonfly tools at the South by Southwest conference. Microsoft will launch IE9 and Mozilla will show Firefox 4 RC.

Opera Software will be strutting its stuff at the South by Southwest conference, delivering beta versions of its latest browser and tools for developers.

At SXSW in Austin, Texas, Opera will deliver Opera 11.10 beta, code-named "Barracuda," as well as the beta of Opera Dragonfly, the company's set of Web authoring and debugging tools.

Opera officials said Barracuda improves CSS3 support by adding multicolumn layout and gradients. The new release also features support for WebP, Google's new image protocol, and the WOFF (Web Open Font Format).

The Opera Dragonfly beta adds a new breakpoints panel that enables developers to slice and dice their JavaScript code to find any problems. The new tools also provide new ways to inspect network loads, resource handling and cookies to give developers greater insight into how their site loads and performs. The Opera Dragonfly beta will debut on March 14.

Meanwhile, Microsoft also will be using SXSW as the platform for launching Internet Explorer 9. In a March 9 blog post, Ryan Gavin, senior director of Internet Explorer business and marketing, said, "In Austin, we will be joined by some of the most exciting Websites and Web heroes out there, including Ze Frank. We also have a heck of a party planned celebrating the amazing developers and designers who are creating a more beautiful Web..."

Mozilla, provider of the Firefox browser, also will be at SXSW. Mozilla will show off the release candidate of Firefox 4. On March 9 Mozilla announced that Firefox 4 for Windows, Mac and Linux had exited the beta cycle and become available as a release candidate in more than 70 languages. Moreover, Mozilla said the millions of users testing Firefox 4 will be automatically updated to the release candidate version and will join our Mozilla quality-assurance team in validating the new features, enhanced performance and stability and HTML5 capabilities in Firefox 4.

And, not to be outdone on the party front, Mozilla is throwing a party, too. Mozilla is co-sponsoring the Austin JavaScript SXSW Party March 13.