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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Nov. 12, 2010 / 5 Kislev, 5771

‘Social’ Web browsers: One works very well, one awaits improvement

By Mark Kellner



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Facebook, once a mystery if you weren't a college or university student (or recent graduate), is now the virtual "public square" of the age. We all connect there, or at least 500 million of us do.

And, I would venture, many of us, at least at work, do it the same way: via a Web browser, such as Internet Explorer or Google's Chrome. I'll leave the mobile device question aside for the moment.

But having multiple Web pages open can be a resource hog, and you can lose your way among the various social networks. Wouldn't it be neat if you could incorporate your social stuff alongside your Web browsing? (That massive grinding sound, by the way, is of the collective molars of thousands of bosses scraping together. But I digress.)

Two free Web browsers - Flock and RockMelt - purport to do this. Flock, online at www.flock.com, has been out for a few months; RockMelt, backed by Netscape co-creator Marc Andreessen, is in Beta testing, but you can go to www.rockmelt.com, to sign up for an invite. If some of your social networking buddies are already using RockMelt, as one of mine was, you could jump up the waiting list a bit.

In case you're wondering which one to choose, here's a useful clue: one works very well, the other less so, in large part due to different layout styles, and, possible the underlying browser technology. RockMelt, available for both Windows and Macintosh users, is built on Google's Chrome Web browser. Flock's general release, for now, is built on Mozilla, the browser technology behind Firefox. (Flock says it will be on the next release of Chrome, version 7, "in a few weeks" and on both platforms.)

Regardless of the technology, Flock, sad to say, seems to have some issues. I downloaded it twice, some number of weeks apart, and each time the screen display was unsatisfying. The left "margin" of the browser contained all sorts of Facebook updates, but was large enough to make the "main" browsing area uncomfortably difficult to read. Typical browser zooming commands helped, but not totally. (It is possible to adjust the width of that margin, but you then lose some of the content.)

I tested both Flock and RockMelt on an HNC monitor with a 24.5-inch (diagonally measured) screen and a resolution set at 1080p, as I have an HDMI connection from my computer's video output. In short, there's plenty of screen "real estate" for the program to use.

At the top of Flock's Web browsing area is a scroll of photos from the Flickr sharing service, if you sign in; it can also handle YouTube videos and Truveo (CQ) video clips. After a while, all this media richness is like sucking down an entire jar of dulce de leche: very sweet, but a tad overwhelming.

Overwhelming, and not in a good way, describes Flock's "My World" page, which attempts to aggregate your favorite Web sites, a Twitter feed search, your favored RSS news feeds and media into one viewable selection. Ugh. It's just too much, like putting maraschino cherries, in syrup, on top of the dulce de leche.

The Flock folks say improvements to the browser are coming, as noted above. But I'm not suggesting you flock to Flock just yet.

RockMelt, on the other hand, already has Chrome 7, is a bit more streamlined, and is far more functional a product. It sets up in a more automated fashion, asking if you wish to import bookmarks and such from other browsers, and if you wish to make it your "default" Web client. Once that's done, you're encouraged to sign in to Facebook and Twitter - other services are coming, I'm told - and to add online "feeds" from your favorite or most recent Web sites. These sit in a small "rail" on the right side of the screen; hover over an icon and you can see the number of new items. Click on the icon and a display window pops up.

On the left "rail," RockMelt will give you either the latest updates from all your Facebook friends, or the ones you select as favorites. Again, it's a hover-and-click approach, but I find that less distracting than Flock's floating feed.

Which to choose? I'm a RockMelt fan for the moment, but that could change. And, since both are free, you may wish to try both.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor Mark Kellner has reported on technology for industry newspapers and magazines since 1983, and has been the computer columnist for The Washington Times since 1991.Comment by clicking here.

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