Coming soon to reality TV: "Hoarders: Web Bookmarks"
July 31, 2013 11:10 AM   Subscribe

I am bookmarking websites like crazy, as I do research and online reading, and it's a mess. Help!

I use Chrome (Mac) and I feel like I need a bookmark organizer. I do a lot of industry research and reading online but often don't have time to delve deeply into an article before I have to move on, so I bookmark it. I just click the little star. Fancy, right?

As you can imagine, my bookmarks are now one long list of chaos. A folder system would be great, but even better would be the ability to bookmark some pages and have those pages sent to a feed reader or something that I could browse through... and still bookmark other pages as I do now, in Chrome, just because they're useful or link to sites I use regularly, etc.

I'm confused about the state of Delicious, Feedly, etc, and if any of that is even relevant to my problem. I am intimidated by Evernote and would rather use something more lightweight. Do I want Zotero? Is there something new?

I wouldn't mind doing a little tagging if I could do it "on the fly" during my bookmarking process - I'm unlikely to go back and add metadata retroactively.

Any thoughts or best practices, web-researchers?
posted by nkknkk to Technology (15 answers total) 25 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: I really like Pinboard; it's a solid service, sustained by sign-up fees. One of the first things I do on my computer is add the bookmarklet. Then I can add some notes & tags as I go, which helps a LOT with finding things later. It comes with an RSS feed so you could in theory go back and look at them through a reader as well. There's even a built-in "read later" checkbox when you add a link. I think the current signup fee is about $10. (It goes up as people join.) There's also a archive feature that costs $25/yr; I haven't used it yet so I can't speak to its usefulness.
posted by epersonae at 11:19 AM on July 31, 2013 [4 favorites]

Pinboard's "read later" bookmarkelet or extension is what you want.
posted by zippy at 11:29 AM on July 31, 2013

Another vote for pinboard. It's what delicious was when it was still working.
posted by crocomancer at 11:52 AM on July 31, 2013

Totally Pinboard. Easy and straightforward and you can set everything to be private, and you pay a small fee so it's less likely to go belly-up than free services.

I had a bajillion bookmarks, and uploaded them all to Pinboard and spent one afternoon tagging and organizing there, and now they are easy to search by tags and keywords. Then moving forward, you can bookmark things directly to Pinboard by adding a bookmarklet to your browser, and you can add a few tags or relevant description when you add each.

For image bookmarking, for example if you want to be able to see a bunch of photos of bathroom faucets at once (or similar task where it's easier to remember which one you want by the visual than by the name), Pinterest is useful.
posted by LobsterMitten at 11:54 AM on July 31, 2013

nkknkk: "I am intimidated by Evernote"

I was going to come in and suggest Evernote. I use it for recipes, but it's pretty straightforward. I use the webclipper extension for Firefox, and I either get a whole page or I select a piece and clip that. The nice parts about it for research are you can add tags (ResearchPaper) and also search your notes.

I don't use a lot of the functionality, and I never got into the Evernote Food (even though that's what I use it for), but to get started is pretty easy, and if you like it you can invest time into using it better.
posted by I am the Walrus at 12:05 PM on July 31, 2013
It's like my backup brain.
It has every feature I could imagine.
Best one is that for a small yearly fee, it will email you every week a file with all your bookmarks. This way if some disaster happens, worst is you lose a week's worth.
It organizes hierachally, and has aliases so that you can have the same bookmark under seperate branches.
You can include a large amount of html formatted text as notes for each.
You can have the folders and bookmarks either private or public, like for example here is my NY folder.
Tags, keywords, upload an image icon, ratings, and you can have a preset reminder to check it weekly, monthly, in x days etc. - yes on the fly when you use the bookmarklet.
And it can import and export to most formats.
posted by Sophont at 12:30 PM on July 31, 2013

Delicious still works and is free. It is not as easy to organize all of your bookmarks at once like it used to be, but saving, tagging, importing and exporting of bookmarks is still there. If you use Chrome, you can tagg bookmarks right now, yes? Whether you use Pinboard, Delicious or any other cloud based bookmarking tool, it should be able to sync with your Chrome bookmarks automatically.
posted by soelo at 12:30 PM on July 31, 2013

Gonna suggest Pocket (f.k.a. Read It Later).
posted by kindall at 12:35 PM on July 31, 2013 [3 favorites]

posted by singingfish at 2:10 PM on July 31, 2013

Best answer: Ditto Pinboard + bookmarklet.

I don't know if you can do this in Chrome, but in Firefox, I added a keyword to my Pinboard bookmarklet, so all I have to do to bookmark something is hit Command-L to select the address bar, then type the keyword "p" and hit enter, and Pinboard's Save a Bookmark box pops up. Once I'm logged in, all I have to do in that window for subsequent bookmarks is hit tab twice, then enter, and I have the page bookmarked in Pinboard!
posted by limeonaire at 3:31 PM on July 31, 2013 [1 favorite]

I wouldn't mind doing a little tagging if I could do it "on the fly" during my bookmarking process - I'm unlikely to go back and add metadata retroactively.

Delicious allows you to do this.

I am a long-time user of delicious and I am awfully damned happy with it. I understand that it is not the latest or most sophisticated beat from off the street. But it works. It does what I want it to do. And I think it will do what you want it to do.
posted by jason's_planet at 5:00 PM on July 31, 2013

I've used delicious and pinboard and I can say that, in my experience, pinboard's features, UI, and customer service beats delicious hands down. It's also small enough that you can email or tweet the founder and get a prompt, personalized reply. I was hesitant to pay for a bookmarking service when there are so many free options, but it is really, really worth it.
posted by Nickel at 9:35 PM on July 31, 2013

Best answer: Another satisfied Pinboard customer here. I used it last year while I was studying.

I used a combination of quoting the key passage in the link description, and adding tags. That combination makes it very easy to search for that one elusive link you half remember… and the bookmarklet makes it a straightforward process.
posted by robcorr at 2:31 AM on August 1, 2013 [2 favorites]

I moved from Pinboard to Springpad because Springpad is just as easy to use and does a lot more. It can also save full text from the pages, which is searchable later.
posted by cnc at 9:41 AM on August 1, 2013

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