Flock finally revealed to the public

flock logo

So at long last Flock is out in a form that the general internet public can download and play with. And honestly after all the hype and secret squirrel secrecy, its a bit of a let down. Let me outline what it is and what it does differently.

He's my screenshots of the Flock and everyone's Tagged Flock pictures.

It looks to be a Deer Park alpha build of Firefox (might be wrong but its at least a beta) with additional features. What are the extra features? Well…

Add a blogging tool,
Add del.icio.us bookmarking but remove regular bookmarks,
Add a Safari RSS type aggregator and remove livebookmarks,
Add a nice, well designed skin and little tricks here and there.

And you pretty much got Flock.

tagging up star items in flock

I think if Greasemonkey was not available I would be very much more impressed. But lets be clear, its a early alpha and can be steered in different directions. I like that fact they have put del.icio.us bookmarking deeply inside and its certainly better than the firefox plugins you can get which do simlar things. But the flickr intergration feel more like a poor after thought in comparison. Its nice to have a blog app right there, but right click and blog is a little sucky and I couldnt get it working for Blojsom under the Atom, moveabletype or even metaweblog API's at all. Which is strange because I thought at least metaweblog would work. I checked the blojsom logs after David's comment, nothing is coming through from Flock or any other besides my own wblogger client. Oh yeah heres the nasty html error I get. Try and make some sense of that…

So at the end of the day version 0.4 alpha is not bad, I won't replace firefox because Flock is certainly not amzingly stable. People have already took pictures with boxes being cut off and the like. Here's a few of my grumbles. It could be that I'm running Flock on my tabletpc computer but I dont think so. Greasemonkey can do a lot of the little tricks Flock has, but there not as smooth or well thought out. Flock is worth keeping an eye on for later.

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Author: Ianforrester

Senior firestarter at BBC R&D, emergent technology expert and serial social geek event organiser.