Blogging with Flock

For the past couple of days, I’ve been playing with Flock, the new web browser. Not so much for its capabilities as a browser – and it is pretty good at that – but more its capability as a blog editing tool.

Even though it is still in development (nice warning when you download the installer: "If you have made it this far, chances are that you are aware of the risks associated with software that is nestled somewhere between the alpha and beta states"), it is very polished overall. As a browser, it certainly stands up against Firefox and Opera, not to mention Internet Explorer.

But I’m most impressed with using it to create and publish blog posts. Very easy indeed – easy to set up with your blog account and very easy to use with its clear WYSIWIG editor.

So far, I’ve successfully created and published posts to three different blogs – NevOn 2.0, my soon-to-be new blog home (running on WordPress 1.5.2), NevOn 2.0 Experimental (Movable Type 3.2) and this blog on TypePad. I’m writing this post with Flock.

It’s not perfect at the moment by any means (eg, odd line breaks when posting to the WordPress blog) and I wouldn’t use it as a replacement for ecto for Windows, my current and preferred offline editing tool.

But it’s certainly worth serious consideration as a blog editing tool.

I’ve not yet discovered half of its potential (dragging and dropping web content, connecting with Flickr, etc) but I will get to that soon enough.

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[EDIT] Editing this from within TypePad. Main thing Flock missed was including the categories – I can select them from the list in Flock but they weren’t included when Flock published the post. I’m sure the developers will fix that one. Also some odd line spacing between paragraphs. Again, fixable I’m sure.

9 thoughts on “Blogging with Flock

  1. Hi Neville,
    I’ve played with Flock as well and their blogging feature is neat indeed. But if you like Flock for blogging you could try Qumana ( well. A simple blogging tool (easy to use with multiple blogs and platforms), which is a lot further in it’s development. Including categories in your posts works very well. I’ve used Qumana for quite a while now and I really like it!

  2. Elimine, I tried Qumana about 4 months ago. Didn’t like it at all. I’ve heard the latest version has major improvements so perhaps worth another look.
    Although ecto for Windows is far from perfect, I’ve yet to find another offline blog editor that’s better. I have BlogJet, too. It’s good but not as good as ecto.

  3. Hi Neville, since my company ( is working on adding blogging/social features as well I would love to hear what your wishlist looks like. I will be coming to Les Blogs as well so perhaps we could meet up for a chat. I also use Ecto for Windows and BlogJet for posts with images.
    BTW, I really enjoy FIR! Keep up the good work.
    All the best,

  4. Net, thanks for dropping in! Very interesting to hear that you’re thinking about adding blogging features to Maxthon.
    Before switching to Firefox last year, I was a Maxthon user (and MyIE2 before that). A long time user, in fact. A primary reason for switching was concerns about IE security at that time. For anyone who doesn’t know Maxthon, it runs on top of IE (Net, is that the right way of saying it?)
    I’m actually running IE 7 beta 1 on one of my PCs. Tabbed browsing is good. Of course it’s still a beta (and an early one) so much to still improve. I think you’ll have a great differentiator for Maxthon if you have a seamless blog-posting capability. Flock’s is good especially how it’s implemented.
    Re a wishlist, your comment will prompt a post on that which I’ll aim to get published between now and Les Blogs.
    Thanks for liking FIR! Looking forward to meeting you at Les Blogs next month.

  5. Thanks for the review of Flock. Hope you do get to checking out other blog-friendly features such as the shelf (which I wrote, with all its bugs and warts), the flickr integration, and things like context-menu items that allow you to blog a page or an excerpt easily.

  6. Ive just been listening to the “For Immediate Release #103”, where you discuss wether Flock supports blog posting on “non hosted services”, like WordPress e.g.
    And ive just been trying it out on WordPress 1.5 and 2.0, and it works just fine actually. Its very easy to set up, and its very easy to get your post postet. BUT, Flock does not support the “code” view, and therefore its impossible to make, lets say blockquotes ect. And when you for example want to make some text bold, it uses the style function i xhtml. That is not the way to do it I’d say. The bacis HTML tags such as STRONG or EM for italic text is the way to style your text on a blogpost. And Flock also brake lines in your blogposts the wrong way. That results in huge gabs in your text when its postet on your weblog. Therefore im not quite fund of it. Hopefully there will be better opportunity to create blogposts via Flock in the future.

  7. Im sorry, ive actually just found the codeview in Flock, though its hidden quite well in the bottom of the posting window. Theres a little arrow that lets you drag the codeview up in front of the “standard” post view. Excelent !

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