Roses are red, violets are blue, Opera GX gives Valentine's a gray, rainy hue

HeartBlocker extension aimed at the 'forever alone' crowd

Opera is rolling out an extension to the gamer version of its eponymous browser aimed at users who would rather not be reminded of the significance of February 14.

For this writer, February 14 will forever be significant for being the date associated with the "Family Portrait" photos snapped by Voyager 1, which were the source of the famous "Pale Blue Dot" image of the Earth.

However, others regard today as having romantic significance they'd prefer to avoid. It is at those that Opera is pitching the anti-Valentine's Day "HeartBlocker" extension for its Opera GX browser.

It's an amusing enough add-in, with text substitutions for obvious words, such as "Valentine's Day" becoming "14th February." We were particularly impressed with "husband" or "wife" becoming "desolate spouse" when Emo mode is enabled, which sums up the reaction nicely whenever the idea is mooted that February 14 should be rebranded Voyager Day or similar.

Other features include daubing everything in shades of gray and the addition of rain for the particularly miserable. rendered in grey with rain, thanks to heartblock extension in opera gx

El Reg goes gray

What it doesn't do, however, is deal with the onslaught of advertising associated with the date. We took a look at the front page of a certain online retailer, and it was difficult to avoid Valentine's Day deals despite the rain running down the browser and the gray-tinged experience.

Opera is a Chromium browser, and Opera GX is a variant for gamers. It turned up in 2019 and permits users to limit CPU and memory usage to maximize system resources. While even the HeartBlocker extension could not stop every Valentine's Day banner from appearing, the browser itself does have a relatively good ad-blocker built in, as well as integration with services such as Twitch.

The default visual design might not be to everyone's taste, although it can be easily themed. Annoyingly, it does not pick up the theme of the Windows desktop by default and instead starts up in Dark Mode unless told otherwise.

The HeartBlocker extension follows a long line of extensions that can do amusing things to web pages – remember the one for Chrome that turned the word "Millennial" into "Snake People"?

Perhaps recognizing the short-term amusement value of such things, Opera's HeartBlocker event only runs until 1900 CET (2000 UTC, 1000 Pacific) on February 15. ®

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