Blog logoMatthew Lang


A 2 post collection

Say Hello to Linkalong

 •  Filed under Posts, Products, Bookmarking

I mentioned previously that I was interested in building a replacement bookmarking application for my bookmark collection on Pinboard. I wanted something a little more than just lists of bookmarks, I wanted more information when viewing an individual bookmark. Here's some things I wanted to see:

  • What else have I bookmarked from this site?
  • What else have I bookmarked with similar tags?
  • What did I bookmark before and after this?

In the last few weeks, I've been putting together my own private bookmarking application. So far I have enough functionality that I can use it on a day to day basis and it also includes some end points so that I can integrate it with other apps and services. So without further ado, here's a sneak peak of the sections that make up a bookmark page in my private bookmarking application, Linkalong.

Big title

There's no getting away from the title. It's big and bold. Lately I have been building web sites and applications with bigger text in them. A lot of websites have very small text which I am finding increasingly difficult to read. For this bookmarking application I wanted a big and bold title.

Markdown based notes

I love writing notes in Markdown. Even if my notes in my notebook sometimes have the Markdown markup in them. Crazy, right? Markdown's markup is just second nature now when I am writing. It makes sense then for the notes for my bookmarks to be written in Markdown and rendered as HTML.

Bookmarks from the same site

When I used Pinboard, I had tags for bookmarks from the same site. It allowed me to view all bookmarks from the same site. Although it would be easy to do with tags in my own application, I wanted to list bookmarks from the same site without having to tag all relevant bookmarks with the same tag.

Bookmarks with the same tags

Just like seeing bookmarks from the same site, I wanted to see bookmarks with similar tags.

Nearby bookmarks

Finally I wanted to see the bookmarks that I saved before and after this one. So at the bottom of the page I added links to those respective bookmarks.

Building Linkalong has been fun and it's definitely by no means finished. It's served two purposes for me. It's my replacement for Pinboard and it is a place where I can try out new things with an application that I use everyday. If you're looking for the whole page, you can view a screenshot of that here.

Thanks to Patrick Rhone for his initial indirect nudge to building this.

My Ideal Bookmarking Application

 •  Filed under Posts, Bookmarking

I've been using Pinboard for sometime now for managing my bookmarks. I can't complain about the service. As bookmarking services go, it's the best out there. However, the other day I seen a screenshot of a private bookmarking service that someone else was using. This person will remain anonymous as they're trying to keep their own bookmarking application low key.

What I loved about the screenshot of their application though was the wealth of information available to you when you viewed a single bookmark from the collection. It contained list of bookmarks with similar tags as well as text from the link itself.

It got me thinking about Pinboard and what contextual information is offered when you are viewing a single bookmark.

A single bookmark on Pinboard

Not a lot really. This isn't a complaint against Pinboard, it's a great service and one that I recommend, but it got me wondering about the type of information I would like to see relating to a particular bookmark on the same page.

Here's some things I managed to think of:

  • What did I bookmark before and after this?
  • What bookmarks do I have that are from this site?
  • What bookmarks do I have that have one or more matching tags?

I wondered if I should be rolling my own bookmarking application. I'm a developer, and it sure wouldn't be a wasted project to do. I'm always on the look out for something to keep me practicing towards being a skilled developer.

I then wondered if there was anything else I would like my bookmarking application to do. Besides offering more information on a single bookmark, I would like to save notes, but I would like these notes to be written in Markdown and then rendered in nice HTML markup. I have a ton of notes written in Markdown that I have on my MacBook, but I would like them to be viewable on the web by only me.

I suppose my ideal is bookmarking application is more than just for bookmarking. It would be for notes, clips, images and notes. Evernote I hear some of you cry! Yes, I could do all this in Evernote, but that's not the point of this. It's about my ideal bookmarking application, and it doesn't exist ... yet.