Tuesday, November 20, 2007

First Impressions of Flock – The Social Web Browser

After reading about the Flock release in this blog post which nicely outlines the features, I downloaded the new ‘Social Web Browser’ to give it a test drive. Here are my first impressions:

The good: For a social media nut like myself this is pretty cool. Similar to Plaxo Pulse it aggregates all of my social networking profiles but they’ve done it in the browser – a tool that I use everyday. So I can stay connected to my social graph while doing my daily activities.

The bad: It feels busy. There’s a lot going and it’s a little distracting with all the buttons, options and links. I think it would appear less busy if they would have chosen muted colors for all of the buttons and links. Also they didn’t think about integrating other RSS readers, they only gave the option to use the browser as an aggregator. I’m pretty happy with Google Reader and would have liked to simply login and access all of my feeds through a widget or something.

Favorite Feature: The drag and drop web clipboard – this is a place to temporarily save images, links, and even text. Today I often use an email window to save things I want to go back to that day and this may serve as an interesting alternative.

The bottom line: I like it enough to keep using it –for now. I’m going to give it a week and see if I can make this an everyday browser or as Scott Gilbertson says, a ‘weekend browser’. It will all depend on if I actually use the ‘social’ features and if all of the options don’t distract me from doing my job.

If you find that you have a little extra time between holiday shopping this weekend I say give Flock a try and see what you think. If you’re already a user of Flock I’d love to hear about your experience with it.

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