Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Flock2.0 - A powerful social web browser
Thanks to Henry, I got (re-)acquainted with Flock, the social web browser. I installed it yesterday, and played around with it a bit. Here are some thoughts.
I linked the "Friend feeds" from my social networks to it (Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace), so now I get automatic updates of all my friends updates'. I am missing LinkedIn, but also the more local networks, such as Netlog or Hyves, and there does not seem to be a way to add people feeds from non-supported services (yet).
Next, I added the my Flickr, Picasa and YouTube accounts, and all the media feeds from these sources are centralised in a media bar at the top (or bottom) of the browser. This means any channels you subscribe to, or new additions from your friends. And you can view media either by opening the media bar, or as a widget on your startup screen.
Next, I exported all my Netvibes feeds to an OPML file, and imported it into Flock. Of course, this is an offline feedreader - as opposed to Netvibes - but it is nice to have all these functions combined in one tool. Moreover, it allows me to read all new feeds in one single page (a feature that Netvibes does not support yet).
A very neat feature is the platform-independent blog editor (which I am using while writing this post). Flock allows you to add your weblog accounts, and then provides a simple editor for writing a post. When you are finished writing a post, you can choose which blog to post it to. However, when I tried to actually publish the post, nothing happened.
A bonus is that it automatically uploads any illustrations or images to your online photo account (in my case on Flickr).
All in all, a very positive experience, if some of the minor flaws are fixed.