« | Home | »

RockMelt: A New Browser? A Planet Vaporizing Death Ray?

Topics: Technology | 3 CommentsBy admin | August 18, 2009

I know the answer, but if I told you, I’d have to kill you.

The mysterious new startup RockMelt is creating more of a subdued hum than an actual buzz with their mysterious press leakage. Is it a browser? A social networking tool? A planet-vaporizing death ray? The most informed guess so far is that it’s an all new browser built from the ground up to more effectively take advantage of social networking and the social web. The fact that Marc Andreessen (creator of Netscape Navigator) has invested in the company has fueled speculation that it’s some kind of all-around Firefox/Google Chrome/IE Killer. But why would Andreessen back a new browser, especially in light of remarks like those of Xoogler-turned-venture capitalist Salman Ullah (say that name out loud for a good laugh) in this Esquire piece a while back in which, when told that the next pitch he was going to hear was for a browser, he said “Tell them to go fuck themselves…what value do I get as an end user? Why would I install a new browser?” Well, there’s a lot of quiet speculation that it’s just an irrational expression of Andreessen’s frustration with ultimately losing the Browser Wars to the Evil Forces In Redmond. But if the anger is directed at Microsoft, Google, or Mozilla, why does the RockMelt logo so closely resemble an exploding-Earth version of the .Mac logo?

If indeed RockMelt is a new browser, and if it’s as impressive as Netscape was in its heyday, I’m on board. I don’t use Chrome (as cool as it is) because I just don’t want more Google in my life, and (at least on my systems) Firefox has begun to show signs of struggling with things like Facebook’s monstrously AJAX-heavy pages, especially with embedded video present. In any case, if you want to be one of the first to know what Rockmelt is all about, go to their mysterious single-page site and give them your e-mail. I did, but this is all the thanks I’ve gotten so far:

Maybe you’d have better luck friending RockMelt’s principals Eric Vishria and Tim Howes on Facebook. Their profile pics seem to suggest there may even be a line of action figures in the works too:

Read Comments

  1. Posted by kristin on 08.18.09 8:41 am

    i thought this was going to be about the end of the world. i hate to say it, but i’m a little dissapointed. i just use whatever browser is available – i don’t get the fuss.

    remember our bet? i was hoping we’d break even :)

  2. Posted by » Cool New Search Tools That Aren’t Google - Dissociated Press on 02.12.10 8:11 am

    [...] steroids. And there are a few mysterious startups with dramatic homepages like RockMelt, which we touched on previously, or DiscoveryEngine, which apparently has an active crawler called DiscoBot but on their [...]

  3. Posted by Rockmelt - A Social Web Browser, Not A Death Ray at dissociatedpress.com on 11.08.10 9:02 pm

    [...] August of last year, we pondered whether the mysterious Rockmelt was a new web browser or a planet vaporizing death ray. Well, the answer has been revealed, and frankly, we would have been a little more excited with the [...]