Originally published November 12, 2010
Speculation is a giant part of American culture. From Oscar nominees to Super Bowl winners to the next president, we jump the gun on everything – making predictions based off of little more than gut feelings and who we like more long before there is real evidence to back it up.
Technology is no different, with a multitude of products and services being hailed as the next big thing, and most falling the way of Atari or HD-DVDs.
The smart phone seemed like saving grace of social networking. Even without internet access, you can update Twitter, Facebook creep or any other network you use. Instead of having multiple browser pages up, you could just flick through different applications on your phone.
Then there were desktop applications, like Seesmic, which link up your social networking sites into one convenient package. But you still need to keep open a web browser for all your other work.
Then RockMelt was announced.
The RockMelt browser made a big splash on Twitter the other day, but much remained a mystery. After visiting the site, the social network nerd in all of you will be screaming for its immediate release.
With a sleek and safe interface (it’s built using the same open source project as Google Chrome), RockMelt allows you to access your favorite sites without leaving your current page. Instead of copying a link into Twitter or Facebook, you simply have to click share with the convenient buttons bordering the page.
One of the most innovative, and nerdiest, aspects of RockMelt is the customizable aspect of it. Yes, with current browsers you can pick different add-ons, but RockMelt takes it to a whole new level.
You log-on to use it, and each user’s experience is different. Your Facebook friends, your Twitter followers and your feeds are all right there, giving you access to everything from any page.
RockMelt is also intuitive as to what you like, keeping track of your favorite, and most visited sites and then alerting you whenever there’s a new story, pictures or video. And regardless of what you want to do – like something, comment, post a picture – you can do it right there, without navigating to a new page.
Even the search is revolutionized, using the keyboard to flip through the search results.
Right now, RockMelt is still in its beta stage. If you go to the site, rockmelt.com, you can sign up to be offered an early version and test it out. Even if you don’t want to sign up, checking out the demo video is exciting enough.
While everything at this point is pure speculation, the potential behind RockMelt is exciting. Even if it fails a miserable death, it is one of the most stimulating technological ventures for at least the next month.