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Friday, July 19, 2013

Replacement for RockMeIt?

For my daily social network interactions, I have for several years been using a Chromium-based browser called RockMeIt (no links from me, and I will tell you why in a moment). I open this browser every day, and use it for quite literally all of my social interactions from Google+ to Facebook and Twitter to LinkedIn and Tumblr. It's really quite a brilliant browser, built specifically for this role, and really does it quite well.

Today, RockMeIt deigned to finally post, in the "New Tab" page, an end-of-life announcement for the RockMeIt browser. I've known for several months that they'd stopped updating the browser, while they were working on some ridiculous web portal thing (um, guys, the whole Portal concept, which tied back into the Mosaic homepage and the Yahoo, Excite, and iGoogle thing, back in the late 90s? It's dead. Long dead. So far long dead that even Google has given up on it.), which really isn't the social networking thing I needed to have so I have mostly ignored their site.

I had posted a tumblr response to their initial announcement that the browser was no longer being updated, basically noting that most of their user base had revolted against that idea, and that by continuing with it they would likely watch their numbers drop off precipitously, the proverbial rock off a cliff. Time will still tell on that one, but what I'm mostly upset about is that RockMeIt announced the EOL for the browser as the 31st of July, then for more than a week after announcing it didn't actually make the people who USE the browser aware of it (it was posted on their website, which I don't use for any reason, and on their tumblr feed, which I don't follow) until less that two weeks were left on the EOL.

Yeah, you read that right. Though internally, the EOL was announced three weeks out (still too close for any reasonable person; Google, for example, announced their EOL of iGoogle about a year in advance, and notified users every time they opened iGoogle) there was not even a single notification in the browser (despite the fact that RockMeIt LOGS IN TO THEIR WEBSITE every time you open it up, if you have it so configured) until today, twelve days before they completely pull the plug. Completely, as in you can no longer log in at all, can't access or use any bookmarks, saved site information, feeds, edges, nothing.

I can't say I didn't expect that RockMeIt would flub the browser EOL—they've been making bad decisions ever since they decided to switch away from the browser to a web portal—but this really is quite poor customer service.

Now, I'm on a rapid hunt for a replacement for the browser, and if anyone has any input please let me know. For the moment, I'm shifting to Chrome with a small number of extensions that will help manage the flow of social networking on multiple networks, but it's not ideal and certainly is not a replacement for one browser that really, actually, does an outstanding job in this space. I will also share any additional insights I can come up with or find.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Contest entries

As some of you may know, I started as an author primarily by writing poetry. I have a fairly sizable collection of poems I've written over the years, and am in the process of putting some of the best of these into chapbooks for submission to several contests. I will certainly announce any results here!

Monday, July 1, 2013

The Nineteen

Do not cast your eyes upon the fire burning there,
Eighteen and I have laid to rest among the towering pine.
Do not wait for us to come, we've been recalled elsewhere,
Heaven needs a hotshot crew to clear and cut a line.

Do not mourn too long for us, the job is not complete,
Fire rages, homes endangered, and we need more hands.
Our part is over now, yet do not admit defeat;
We have simply been recalled to protect Heaven's lands.

Work remains, and noble too; destruction yet to thwart;
Do not shed a bitter tear, nor hold a lasting grudge,
Our brothers dear, sisters too, will need moral support
To finish what we've started here, a line that won't budge.

After all the fire's out, and we've saved all that we can,
Remember proudly how we rushed to aid our fellow Man.