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RockMelt — Right Browser, Wrong Platform?

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the helping-you-repoke-your-tweetblogs dept.

Communications 48

waderoush writes "A detailed Xconomy software review concludes that the new RockMelt browser is a labor-saver for heavy users of the desktop social Web, but it doesn't fully deliver on the startup's promise to build a browser 'designed around you and how you use the Web.' That's because the social Web is less and less about the PC desktop, and more about mobile platforms and appliances like smartphones, tablets, and Internet-connected TVs. What's missing today is software that can help bridge the gap: 'I'm not really looking for more reasons to spend time using my desktop browser,' the review states. 'Rather, I'm busy offloading as many old PC-centric tasks as I can to my other devices. It's nice to have better integration between Facebook, Twitter, news feeds, search, and standard Web content on the desktop. But what's really needed right now is better integration between the desktop social Web and the mobile social Web.'"

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Designed around you and how you use the Web (1, Interesting)

ickleberry (864871) | more than 3 years ago | (#34211570)

It's nice to have better integration between Facebook, Twitter, news feeds, search, and standard Web content on the desktop. But what's really needed right now is better integration between the desktop social Web and the mobile social Web

Its designed how they and possibly some other people use the web. There are plenty of people out there who don't give two shits about Facetube and Twitbook integration.

This is a very niche market, I don't see too many people using Flock either. This is, dare I say it a browser for Arts students.

Re:Designed around you and how you use the Web (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#34211616)

I signed up to at least have a look at it, but they only have releases for OSX and Windows, and the Windows version doesn't work on WINE..

Re:Designed around you and how you use the Web (3, Funny)

eln (21727) | more than 3 years ago | (#34211796)

The two people that use Twitter and Facebook regularly and also use WINE will be devastated by this news.

Re:Designed around you and how you use the Web (1)

aitmanga (1294774) | more than 3 years ago | (#34211948)

The three people that use Twitter and Facebook regularly and also use WINE will be devastated by this news.

FTFY since I use Facebook and Twitter regularly and my home laptop runs Fedora 14.

Re:Designed around you and how you use the Web (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34212332)

Your post seems to indicate that the "correct" correction would actually be

The one person that uses Twitter and Facebook regularly and also uses WINE will be devastated by this news.

Re:Designed around you and how you use the Web (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#34212028)

Yeah, I don't even like Twitter tbh :p Facebook is occasionally useful and/or fun.

Re:Designed around you and how you use the Web (1)

cobrausn (1915176) | more than 3 years ago | (#34211656)

According to their promor video though, their integration with YouTwitFace appears to be one of their primary features.

Spelling Correction (1)

cobrausn (1915176) | more than 3 years ago | (#34211658)

*promo

Re:Designed around you and how you use the Web (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34214270)

dear god let YouTwitFace become a thing.

What the fuck does "Rock Me It" mean? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34211714)

I don't get the name of this browser. Why the fuck is it called "Rock Me It"? What the fuck does the phrase "rock me it" even mean?

It sounds like the sort of broken English I'd heard dumbasses down in Arkansas and Alabama speaking, back when I had the misfortune of doing some contract work over there.

Re:What the fuck does "Rock Me It" mean? (0)

rthille (8526) | more than 3 years ago | (#34211786)

You've got reading comprehension problems. Or maybe just font problems. That's a lower-case 'l' (ell), not a capital 'I' (eye).

That is, it's "Rock Melt", not "Rock Me It". Having had some geology classes, it made perfect sense to me. Rock Melt is where multiple different source rocks are mixed and compressed and melted together, like FaceTubeTwitter out of the big 3 that the browser it targeting...

Re:What the fuck does "Rock Me It" mean? (1)

Beerdood (1451859) | more than 3 years ago | (#34211896)

I don't get the name of this browser. Why the fuck is it called "Rock Me It"? What the fuck does the phrase "rock me it" even mean?

It sounds like the sort of broken English I'd heard dumbasses down in Arkansas and Alabama speaking, back when I had the misfortune of doing some contract work over there.

Well duh, the "it" is for IT - information technology, not "it" the pronoun. Sounds like a good premise - I really don't find that putting time into database management, web hosting, consulting and hardware management are really "rocking me". I find it rather bores me, or maybe even sucks the life out of me. But if these guys can deliver on their promise to provide some sort of information technology that really rocks me - wow! They'll be billionaires in no time! Not sure what they have to offer - maybe the next time I see an ERD it'll slowly move around in 3-d with flashing colors and fireworks in the background with images instead of boring text labels, with laser beams connecting the database tables and Iron Maiden blasting in the background. So far, we only see "rocking IT" depictions in bad hacker movies, I can't wait to see what they have to offer! Please rock me, IT!

Also, I'm aware that it's meLt, not meit. Just saved you a whoosh.

Re:What the fuck does "Rock Me It" mean? (1)

Jettamann (25050) | more than 3 years ago | (#34219986)

they had to settle for RockMeLt, because if they named it RockMeAmadeus they would risk the jinks of being another one hit wonder!

Re:Designed around you and how you use the Web (1)

wondafucka (621502) | more than 3 years ago | (#34211744)

It's nice to have better integration between Facebook, Twitter, news feeds, search, and standard Web content on the desktop. But what's really needed right now is better integration between the desktop social Web and the mobile social Web

Its designed how they and possibly some other people use the web. There are plenty of people out there who don't give two shits about Facetube and Twitbook integration. This is a very niche market, I don't see too many people using Flock either. This is, dare I say it a browser for Arts students.

I hate to break it to you, but *you* are now the niche market. Engineers, Programmers, and IT are no longer the driving force of the internet. Young people with social lives are, and this is the sort of thing that they like and will be a money magnet. Someday soon, you will hear someone say "Oh, Firefox? I don't see too many people using that. Isn't that the browser for people with Aspergers?"

The "Detail-Averse" (1)

presidenteloco (659168) | more than 3 years ago | (#34212242)

Humans =
                Programmers / Engineers / Mathematicians / Scientists (5% ?)
          + The "Detail-Averse" (aka "users" aka "consumers") (95% ?)

Thus the success of blog technology, facebook etc when
a "home page" and a 2-page HTML 1.0 manual arguably should
have sufficed.

Re:Designed around you and how you use the Web (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34213548)

You could have done this without the pretentious stereotyping and adhominem.

Re:Designed around you and how you use the Web (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#34211768)

I dunno. If I could identify a market segment of 500 million people all of whom are likely to have two things in common (they use a browser and they log into facebook), I'm going to think of a way to make those two things work better together, and not worry about anyone who wasn't going to give me money, anyway.

An analogy: in order to be as successful as James Cameron was when he made Avatar, he only needed to convince 200 million people to part with the price of a movie ticket. That's about 3% of the population of the planet. The other 97% he could give a shit about, and they can feel the same towards him. And he still gets to be the guy who made the biggest movie ever by a 50% margin.

Moral: Niche is not necessarily bad, in fact, sometimes it's best.

Re:Designed around you and how you use the Web (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34213124)

Facetube and Twitbook

You're such a rebel. I bet you're a veritable chick magnet at parties.

Out of my way (1)

falldeaf (968657) | more than 3 years ago | (#34211588)

Regardless of the utility of the social aspects of RockMelt, I'm mostly not on board because I like it when I barely even notice my browser. It's really not my focus when I'm browsing the web and I don't want it to be. Chrome is doing it right at the moment. Minimal gui 'chrome', even the kicker bottom on the bottom is gone, which is nice. If you mouseover a URL only then does any semblage of a kicker panel appear. With the direction JS and specifically libraries like JQuery are taking things, who needs clunky web browser based enhancements!

Re:Out of my way (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34212260)

The review states. 'Rather, I'm busy offloading as many old PC-centric tasks as I can to my other devices.'
Based on the rationale behind Rockmelt (specialized internet interaction), I think the idea here is to contribute toward the conversion of computers from generic computing devices (which be easily reprogrammed for things "They" don't want done) into specialized devices which can be controlled from beyond. Divide and conquer, y'know?

No lizard, no Spock? (1)

countSudoku() (1047544) | more than 3 years ago | (#34211636)

RockMelt
PaperBurn
ScissorsCut
LizardRun
SpockSmart

What did I win?!

Re:No lizard, no Spock? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34211870)

You won another year of living in your mother's basement, fantasizing about what a nude woman looks like in real life.

RockMelt would make a great App (2, Interesting)

rsborg (111459) | more than 3 years ago | (#34211646)

It's built on a browser, but really, if it went laser-focus on just social sites and the such, it would make a good companion, especially if it gave the option to load the links in other browsers.

I would never use it because I'm reliant on 1password, and since this is not a supported browser, it makes my auth more difficult... I think the same could be said about many extensions on FF/Safari/Chrome. Maybe Rockmelt would be best done as an extension?

The interface is pretty bad on top of it all (1)

tentimestwenty (693290) | more than 3 years ago | (#34213290)

It basically looks like Chrome with facebook grafted on the left and right sides. The only problem is that the layout is not nearly as good as the full facebook page. It's actually much easier keeping another tab open with facebook then to use the Rocketmelt interface. The friend list didn't even recognize my groups settings and the icons of most of my friends have nothing to do with their actual face so it was just a bunch of useless things down the left side. The news feed on the right loaded noticeably slow - i.e. it wasn't just "there" when i wanted it. What's the point of having to wait when I can keep the page open in the tab?

I'm using it now and liking it (1)

NevarMore (248971) | more than 3 years ago | (#34211720)

RockMelt is the first "social" app thats actually made me want to use it. I'm on Facebook frequently during the day, I work from home so FB is my "watercooler". So its nice to check it, quickly, once every few hours. RockMelt helps me do this quickly, I get my social fix and get back to my job.

I also follow several blogs and tech sites, they usually get skimmed over lunch or in the evenings RockMelt actually has an RSS mechanism I like. It saves me time because I can see who has updates. This also lets me see a usable RSS update from my ticket tracker at work. I'm expecting this to give me a consistent experience across OS's too. No more trying to remember if the RSS feeds are in the OS X dashboard, the Windows tray, or the Gnome taskbar. Its in my damn browser in the same place.

On top of all that RockMelt is based on Chrome/Chromium, which I already used anyway.

I do need to check and see if RockMelt is using HTTPS to chatter with FB and twitter.

There are a few things to smooth over:
  - videos in FB chat: can't open video in new tab, clicking it *can* make multiple audio streams play for the same link
  - Minimizing the main window with a docked chat causes the chat to undock when you un-minimize
  - I'd really like to be able to theme it, I find the blue unpleasant. Its close to what Outlook uses.
  - I'd like the edges to autohide
  - I'm missing my Gmail plugin from Chrome, I expect this to be integrated before the final release
  - The double search bars are redundant. Just one url bar like chrome would be great
  - The on-hover actions in the edges are largely useless conveying no new information and taking too long to show up

I'm following RockMelt on twitter and they seem responsive to issues, requests, etc. They have a big "send feedback" button and I've been using it. They don't have the sleazy veneer of "web 2.0", the pretensions of a "social" company, or the "we're too good for you" attitude of geekier outfits.

Regarding the article: la-de-fucking-da. If you reviewed a desktop browser expecting it to tie into your mobile experience you're a fucking moron.
For the inevitable /.'ers that don't use FB or twitter: You probably won't like this either. I hear theres a new Fedora release, go play with that.

Re:I'm using it now and liking it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34211972)

Nice "Slashvert". You are sad.

Re:I'm using it now and liking it (1, Insightful)

NevarMore (248971) | more than 3 years ago | (#34212858)

Yep. This is all part of that "stealth development" the article was talking about. Got me a six digit UID back in the late 90's, posted to /. for years to get my Karma up, and then BLAMMO a decade and a half-later, rolling in the big bucks posting slashvertisements. You caught me.

Re:I'm using it now and liking it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34213248)

Why don't my X-box games play on my toaster? WAAAHH!!!!

Re:I'm using it now and liking it (1)

waderoush (1271548) | more than 3 years ago | (#34212236)

I'm glad you're enjoying RockMelt and I agree with your plaudits and criticisms. But dude. Why does it make me a moron to want more continuity between desktop UIs and mobile UIs? My point was that it seems like a bit of a shame to take $10 million and hire 30 engineers and put them to work for two years on really cool browser that *only works on the desktop,* when I'm trying to spend less time on my desktop, not more.

FU (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34211740)

GOD FUNIG DAMN IT FUKING NORMALFAGS FUKING HIPSTER FUK FUC FUCK. GET OT OF MY INTERNET NOW!!!!11! ONE DWELLS THY BASEMENT AND FOREVER ALONE ONE SHALL BE SO GET YOUR AIDS OUT OF HERE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!111111111111111111

"labor" saver? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34211776)

Really? What important work is supposedly being done on social media? Oh, here's a sampling.

"Jen is in a relationship with James."


"Carla likes Kid Cootie."


"Christy found some AWOL uniforms for Mafia Wars"


Yeah, real important "work" being done there.

Is 'Mobile' the new web 2.0 fad ? (3, Insightful)

unity100 (970058) | more than 3 years ago | (#34211792)

its being exaggerated way too much here, and app sales for various phones are also good, but, is this 'mobilization' really as it is exaggerated to be in these articles ? i dont see anyone frantically tweeting, doing status updates in facebook this or that anymore. except kids, whom i also suspect are texting more than they are 'integrating' their various social website accounts.

really. sometimes i think we tech people make up our silly, shitty, irrelevant fads and then get adversely affected ourselves after all the dust clears out.

Re:Is 'Mobile' the new web 2.0 fad ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34211850)

> is this 'mobilization' really as it is exaggerated to be in these articles

In size, or in rate of increase? In size it's big, not overwhelming, but big. In rate of increase, it's *huge*, and desktops are on the decline. People really are looking for mobile apps to shift what they used to do on desktops to mobile platforms so they won't be tied to one physical spot any more.

You are right that it's the younger group that does most of it. But that's the way of any major cultural shift. It increases as that group gets older until it takes over from what the old people used to do.

Personal computing is changing to be actually *personal*. Based on devices that fit in your pocket and are with you at all times in your daily life and activities. It's just the logical extrapolation of what has been going on for decades now. Computers have been getting smaller and more personal.

Re:Is 'Mobile' the new web 2.0 fad ? (1)

epyT-R (613989) | more than 3 years ago | (#34213692)

I guess it depends on what you mean by 'personal.' To me, 'personal' computing means an experience I can customize to my needs/time ratio at the given moment. (time = needed time to customize vs availability) That is decidedly NOT the trend nowadays with all the locked down walled garden products out there, esp in mobileland. You either learn to adapt to the cut down ID 10 T interface, or you spend inordinate amounts of time messing with third party firmware just to get specific functionality you need. (yes the latter is fun, but sometimes I need to get work done post haste).

Anyway, this makes me think that computing is getting LESS personal as time goes on. Paying ATT for the 'privilege' of an iphone4 experience is nowhere near as personal as an operating environment that has functionally useful control panels and customization options. Even desktop OS's suffer from this 'lets hide the 'hard' stuff behind more useless dialogs' mentality now. Even worse, now they've started adding/removing functionality WITHOUT the options of turning it on/off. (why do I need a special app to quit apps on android? What about my statusbar in FF4?) I'm not happy with this new era of form over function...

Re:Is 'Mobile' the new web 2.0 fad ? (1)

v(*_*)vvvv (233078) | more than 3 years ago | (#34213524)

Must agree. This article and the millions of "journalists" who write ones like it, have always drove the buzz-sphere up into space and back into the ground.

The writer spends more time on how insightful he is for being all over the socio-mobi-web than just reviewing the damn app for what it is... a DESKTOP browser. Far more insight can be found on /. like always.

Besides, if he's sticking with it like he says, then the browser won.

Re:Is 'Mobile' the new web 2.0 fad ? (1)

mcrbids (148650) | more than 3 years ago | (#34213890)

More importantly, I'm just as likely to be posting this from my phone as my laptop. I basically don't browse on my desktop - that's where the printer is, and is far more likely to be showing videos from Hulu/Netflix than normal "desktop computer" use.

Is this really a new browser? (1)

nickovs (115935) | more than 3 years ago | (#34211834)

Watching the video I'm wondering if this is really a new browser concept or is this is just a set of well-designed widgets neatly placed around the borders of the same of browser technology we've had for years? I don't see anything that could not be done using Firefox plug-ins or Safari extensions. I'm not saying that what they have isn't useful to people who live their lives on the Social Network, I just don't see how this idea warrants backing as a venture-capital funded start-up. How long will it be before there are half a dozen implementations of all their good ideas as plug-ins for the browsers we already use?

mobile and desktop not really that different (1)

presidenteloco (659168) | more than 3 years ago | (#34212162)

for me anymore.

Let's see: Mobile:
iPad 1024x768 screen resolution
Current Subnotebook (also mobile): 1366x768
iPhone4 960x640

Web design guidelines for a long time:
"Make sure it works on a 1024x768 screen"

We are beyond the WAP browser / Palm Pilot mobile interface.

You need a bit of clever web app design to make it easy to do
a few things well with relatively few clicks, for mobile use convenience
(can I get this done before the bus arrives / rain soaks my phone)
but there is a convergence in what you can do with mobile UI and desktop UI webapps.

Still 480x320 (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#34213236)

iPhone4 960x640

At three times the DPI of the screen for which the web was designed. You have to treat iPhone 4 like it's 480x320 blocks of 2x2 pixels each; otherwise, people need a magnifying glass to read text.

Re:Still 480x320 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34213356)

Seriously, the DPI on my 15.4" @ 1920x1200 is way too high to use comfortably at times.

Re:Still 480x320 (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#34213458)

Seriously, the DPI on my 15.4" @ 1920x1200 is way too high to use comfortably at times.

Then you might appreciate my guide to finding the appropriate system DPI setting [pineight.com] . It was written with HDTVs in mind but should apply to any display.

Re:mobile and desktop not really that different (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 3 years ago | (#34214872)

Web design guidelines for a long time:
"Make sure it works on a 1024x768 screen"

In 2001 a majority of users were still at 800x600. Today it's still a strong contingent. If you want people too busy to upgrade their computer to buy your shit, keep 800x600.

Integration (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34212934)

Let's see: integrating Facebook, Twitter and search all on a mobile platform ... sounds awfully like WebOS ...

Why is this a big deal ? (1)

DalDei (1032670) | more than 3 years ago | (#34212956)

Why the hell do we need a new browser to do ":Social Networking" ? I watched the video and so totally dont get it maybe I'm just past my years ... But whats the point ? All the social networking sites have perfectly fine apps and plugins that work with existing browsers and devices why on earth would anyone switch to a new browser for this ? The way browsers are nowadays its like switching to a new OS just to use Facebook ... Is the world insane ? People actually invested time and money on this concept ? WTF?

Re:Why is this a big deal ? (1)

Kagetsuki (1620613) | more than 3 years ago | (#34213816)

I am so on the same page with you. I don't actively use facebook, I hate how disorganized twitter is, and maybe use YouTube twice a week. Even if I did use these services extensively I don't see how much better this browser would be than having each site opened up in a different tab. It looks like a "mac" thing so maybe it's just that the target market can't figure out how to copy and paste and they have to click-and-drag everything. Either way if this company actually makes a profit off of this browser I'll be amazed.

I got my social networking apps being social (1)

Nyder (754090) | more than 3 years ago | (#34214402)

I'm really, really starting to get sick of "social networking" and all the crap that deals with it.

Is life so different now from 10, or even 5 years ago that we have to update everyone on what the fuck we are doing all the time?

Are we so shallow that we have to know whats going on with everyone we know all the time?

Can we not live our own lives without everyone comparing themselves to us, and us without comparing to them?

Am I cool because I have a facebook account, or am I cool because I don't use it?

Oh, i better go tweet I just farted, because the smithsonian is going to save all tweets for future generations to most likely, ignore.

Though, back in the 80's, when i was in high school, twitter would of been cool to know where all the parties were happening on the weekends, but that's about it. But even then, word of mouth is better.

How about more social responsibility and less social networking crap?

Another Flock? More ways to share crap with people (1)

Closrapexa (1342111) | more than 3 years ago | (#34215002)

Remember when innovation was something tangible you could see and feel all around you, instead of more ways to share the nothings people do with other people who share their own nothings?

What the hell is the desktop social web? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34215098)

Why should the two be different? The only reason they are now is that mobile devices are generally low power and low bandwidth. BFD

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