Flock, the social browser that’s built on the foundation of everyone’s darling browser Mozilla Firefox, has just released a new version. This milestone release 16 is already packing a heap of the improvements that will also be in the Beta release that’s soon to come (according to their website).
I’m not really sure how many of the things I noticed in this release already were in earlier versions (in one format or another), but I’m just going to point out what I noticed after some time playing with this version.
The first thing I noticed was their tight RSS integration. Just click the feed icon that appears automatically as soon as a page has a feed, and the feed can then be added to Flock’s built-in newsreader. While I’m not really a big fan of local newsreaders (which this is, unless there’s some way of syncing that to some server), but I’m sure this is by far the easiest solution out there for RSS first-timers:
Another feature that’s pretty unique to Flock (albeit not to this release), is their tray…drag and drop text and pictures into it for later usage. It can be activated simply by clicking a little icon in the status-bar:
This can come in very handy when researching for a blog post or other areas where research is necessary (damn, that reminds me of that paper I should be researching right now).
Finally, there’s the photobar:
Now, I could get all excited about this feature, and while it’s really nicely implemented, letting you upload to and view your Flickr stream from inside Flock, I can’t see any immediate use for it. I mean, uploading to Flickr is nice, but there are various solutions, not least upload tools for any kind of OS, that are a lot more versatile. And well, I don’t necessarily need to look at my Flickr photos from within the browser I’m using, if in fact I can just use that browser to go to my Flickr account (and be able to leave comments, search, and do whatever the real Flickr page lets you do). Still, a nice toy.
Finally, there’s an issue that still isn’t resolved in this version. Apparently, Linux and Mac versions of Flock can’t deal with Greasmonkey scripts anymore. Greasemonkey, that extensions that allows for an extremely versatile surfing experience, boasts an impressive number of scripts and which for some people has become almost indispensable. So, when trying to install a script in Flock (on Linux or Mac, I’m on Linux), that’s what you get:
The Flock team actually addressed this issue on the Greasemonkey extension page, but there’s still no word about when they are planning to make Greasemonkey work for Flock again.