Flock is a really good web browser — its real selling point is the way it helps you work with the new web: the social web.
Flock is a derivative of Firefox, so there’s ruggedness, quality and security, but Flock’s real selling point is the way it helps you work with the new web: the social web.
Perhaps you followed the recent Full Code Press Challenge, where two teams of professional web designers competed to build a quality website for a non-profit organisation — in just 24 hours. (The Code Blacks won, by the way, with their site for the Grampians disAbility Advocacy Association.)
Volunteers at the event published a constant stream of photos, videos, blog posts, and Twitter ‘tweets’. Flock was a great way to spectate at the competition.
Flock’s Media Bar (View > Minibar > Media Bar) lets you subscribe to feeds from Flickr and YouTube and see thumbnails from all the photos and videos in a strip across the top of the window. It’s easy to refresh the Media Bar and keep up with what’s new, without needing to visit the YouTube or Flickr pages separately.
Perhaps you wanted to email the address of the page to a friend. At the right-hand end of Flock’s Address Bar is an ‘envelope’ icon. Click that and Flock opens your email program, makes a new message, puts the title of the web page in the Subject and the URL for the page in the body.
Or maybe you’d like to blog about the post you’re reading? Select some text and click the Blog Post icon on the Flock toolbar. A blog post box opens up containing the text you selected and a title. Edit it as you wish and click Publish. Your new post is now on your blog.
Or perhaps you’d like to add the page to your Del.icio.us (or Magnolia) bookmarks. Click the Star (Add to Favorites) beside the Address Bar and choose the service you want to send to.
Or how about just saving a snippet of the text or an image? Click the clipboard icon (Display the Clipboard) in the Flock Toolbar. A sidebar opens. Select the text or image and drag it into the sidebar. Click on the View link below the item in the sidebar to see what’s in the clipping.
Dealing with RSS feeds? Click the RSS icon in the Address Bar to see what feeds are available for that page. A list pops up. Select the one you want. The window changes, the RSS feed sidebar opens and you can click the Subscribe button if you wish to add the feed to your other feeds. Click the Save link below an item to Save it — it’ll be available from the Feed sidebar when you need it.
Need to upload photos to a service such as Flickr? Click the upward arrow (Uploader) in the Flock toolbar. A window opens into which you can drag photos from your computer. Edit titles, descriptions and so on if you wish, then click Upload. Choose the correct photo account and click Upload. Flock handles the upload for you.
Honestly, just try it! And, by the way, you can see the screenshots I made for this article at my Flickr account.
Written for and reproduced from CommunityNet Aotearoa Panui, September 2007. This article may have been modified from the original.