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Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Flock 1.1 broken... Really broken...

I have been a Flock user for a long time (since 0.5 version - thats around 2..3 years back). The reason I like Flock is, its basically Firefox (Mozilla Gecko core) but with a different spin. The interface is designed to look sleek (yes I know FF has themes and add-ons to change its looks and do the same), but the whole interface is kinda well designed. I can't put my finger on what is that that is soo good, but it feels good.

The second thing that makes it fantastic is that it is blogging centric. This means it has a nice RSS feed menu where you can keep tabs on the world without cruising around the net and trying to read _ALL_ the information you are seeing. This will get tiresome when trying track the latest news on sites like Slashdot, TechCrunch, CrunchGear and the New Scientist, as they can produce over 100 articles a day. And some you want to know and some you don't - so getting a general view is important as you just can't read them all.

Starting from version 0.7 they also implemented a blogging interface through Typepad and Blogger API-s. So this made reading new and writing about them easier - no more copy/paste and formating in a small text area!

When the 0.9 came out - it was disappointing - they destroyed the nice sleek design when they removed the groupings. To compensate this they added auto-pinger functionality to RSS aggregators. Oh well - Yo loose some, You win some - no big loss.

When the upgrade to the "great" 1.0 release came out I was cautious as 0.7 -> 0.9 update removed some nice features, but it went pretty well. No new functionality for me as I don't use Facebook and flicker, so no big deal.

But like all good things - they end! The last good version of Flock was 1.0.9.

The 1.1 update came out last Thursday (if I remember correctly). And guess what? The RSS was broken and the blogging interface didn't work. Err... The one thing that makes Flock unique for me! I don't give crap about a gmail/yahoo service API-s that are included in the new 1.1! The gmail has a nice graphical web front end and it also provides IMAP/POP3 support! Was that crappy change worth compromising the whole application?!?!?! God damn - write a plug in for it if you _REALLY_ need it - why is it so important to add it to Flock core?!?!?

The problem is described here and here and the "possible" solution will be out in the version 1.1.1, but then again - as it seems the be the issue with Linux _MOSTLY_ so I'm not confident that they can figure it out so soon.

No matter if you upgrade or do a fresh install the RSS is dead as is blogging. So here is a link to download the working 1.0.9 version (and believe me - it was not easy to find as there is no English version here).

The last frustrating thing that hit me - after getting the older version up and running it wanted to UPDATE it as by default I have had that updates are downloaded automatically (I'm lazy and do not want to waste my time manually looking for updates). CRAP - I just got it running and it will be messed up again... ARGH... Never again I will let it update its core automatically!!

So I went to the flock folder and there it was - 1.1 update - in the updates/0/ folder. I deleted the 0 folder and did a "chmod 000 updates" and "chown root:root updates". No More Updates!!! Well until I can test the updates on some expendable account.

The last thing that really pissed me off was the update dialog asking me if I would make Flock as my default browser? Never - as in the future there can be updates that are not compatible with the older versions as happened with Firefox 0.x -> 1.x, 1.x->2.x and that will happen with 2.x ->3.x. This may not be a real problem, but just a testing/OS glitch, but still - once such a mistake will be released, building up the trust again will take long time.

PS! In the FAQ and changelog are lots and lots of hints about whats all wrong with the vista release - FORGET THE VISTA. It's stillborn OS. It will never go live - Windows 7 will be out first. Its like windows 98 was. Windows 95/NT were fine (at the time) - Windows ME was stillborn - Windows 2k was Fine - Windows SE was stillborn - Windows XP/2k3 was fine - Windows Vista/Longhorn are stillborn - next thing to look forward is Windows 7 and Windows server 2k8. So stop trying to morph the the applications on it!! The hoops you need to jump though are not worth it.

Blogged with Flock

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