September 8th, 2008
Got bookmarks on those social bookmarking site thingees? Now, you can import them into Iterasi
[Full disclosure: Iterasi is a client of mine. I was aware of this feature under development, but I was not involved in this release. Quite frankly, it took me by surprise. But it makes sense that they're pushing it while they're down at the TechCrunch 50.]
Back when I discovered social bookmarking, the way I used the Web changed.
Okay. That may be a little hyperbolic, but there’s a lot of truth to that.
With social bookmarking, I was able to save site locations, tag them in a meaningful way, and get to them from any browser with an Internet connection.
It may not seem like a big deal now. But back then? It was “You mean my bookmarks aren’t beholden to this one browser on this one machine? Oh my. Very cool.”
But my bookmarks always suffered from a problem that I couldn’t solve with just a link.
And that was? Well, sometimes the page just changed. The story or the thing I thought was important or—worst of all—the cool design that I wanted to
rip-off save for inspiration.
Screenshots were a workaround. But they were never really what I wanted.
What I wanted was to save the page.
Fast forward to today.
I’m sitting on a ton of bookmarks. I use social bookmarking sites like ma.gnolia and del.icio.us every day, if not several times a day. They have become so much a part of the way that I use the Web—and the way that I share and glean information from others—that social bookmarking would be an incredibly hard habit to break.
But I still worry about losing the page I actually wanted.
This feature imports bookmarks from Firefox, Internet Explorer, del.icio.us and/or from any app that exports to the standard bookmark export format. So you tell it where your bookmarks are, we import them and make permanent copies of the pages the bookmarks point to. No more lost articles. No more link rot. No more Error 404s. But we don’t just import them. Import Bookmarks is built on top of the iterasi Scheduler – released last month – so one-by-one you can choose to archive each bookmark once, every day, week or month, or not a all.
Now, granted, that’s not going to do much for the links that have already aged. But from now on? I can be sure that I’ll have exactly the page I wanted to save.
Saving bookmarked pages in Iterasi is great, but not using Iterasi is even better
As excited as I am about this feature to extend the use of Iterasi, there’s one thing I’m even more excited about: not having to use Iterasi.
Huh? Stick with me here.
I’ve developed a workflow for saving links and—as chagrin as I am to admit it—Iterasi isn’t part of that workflow.
It’s an afterthought. A habit I’m trying to force.
But with this feature? That problem is solved, too.
Now that Iterasi can import bookmarks, I can work in my preferred social bookmarking tool and still have Iterasi saving the pages for me.
I can fly around willy nilly tagging things in del.icio.us or saving them to the Silicon Florist group on ma.gnolia. All the while, knowing that I can bring those over to Iterasi to make an archived copy.
And that’s pretty cool.
I can work where I’m comfortable working without losing the ability to save things I really want to save. And that makes this new import bookmarks feature very powerful indeed.
The feature, however, does come with a caveat:
If you have lots of bookmarks, it is best to schedule it to run when you are away from your computer. Think about it; we are feeding dozens and dozens of bookmarks down to the browser who is one-at-a-time loading, notarizing, and shipping each up to your account. In other words, we are torturing the poor browser. As you might expect, the browser can lock up under this kind of load. We find this situation to be unavoidable.
For more information and a short video on the new feature, see the Iterasi blog. Want to test drive it yourself? Download the latest version of Iterasi and then click on the “leaves” to access the feature.