RockMelt: The New Browser for Social Media Lovers

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If you’re big on social media and the connected Web 2.0, then you’ll want to see RockMelt.  This is a new browser that has been in development for two years and has finally entered early release beta.

The company behind the browser was funded by Netscape founder Marc Andressen.  The browser is all about sharing with your social networks.

In the beta version, you log in using your Facebook ID.   Probably it’s biggest feature is this: very page you visit can be instantly shared on your Facebook, Twitter, and other accounts via the giant “Share” button at the top of the browser.

There are two border rails.  Your favorite Facebook friends (as you define them) and their updates are shown along the left rail of the browser.  On the right hand side is another rail which is for site feeds.

The left rail has thumbnails of your friends from Facebook, which you can organize by “favorite” as you wish.  Hovering over any of those thumbs brings up a popup with their latest status update and an indicator showing whether they’re online or not.  If they’re online, their Facebook stream is shown as well as an instant chat box so you can communicate.

The right rail houses site feeds from any site or sites you’d like.  You can literally put anything there – Gmail, Twitter, blogs, whatever.  Notifications will appear whenever something new is posted and clicking on them will give a popup with the first few words (usually a headline).  Clicking on that will open a new tab to show you the new content. Every one of these feeds has a Share button attached as well, so you can share it from your right rail without opening a new tab.

There are other innovations with search and so forth.  The browser is a great, new way of viewing the Web and worth trying.  It probably won’t become your only browser, but if you’re a real social media nut, then you’ll likely really enjoy it as a great tool for bringing together your surfing and sharing.


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