Sunday, December 16, 2012

Easy bookmarking with your mobile device

I find myself surfen the web more and more using my iPad or my Android phone. And often I run into an interesting webpage that I want to save in my linkaGoGo account to reference it later, or to finish reading it when I have more time.

I could copy the webpage link and manually add it to linkagogo, but that is quite elaborate as you need to copy the link, then go the linkagogo Add page and paste the link and type in the title. To make this easier linkaGoGo allows you to email the web page information right into your linkaGoGo inbox folder.

Now how does this work? Well both IOS as well as Android allow you to email the webpage you have in the browser. They will automatically put the title of the web page in the subject of the email and the web address (link) as the first line of the email content. Now if you send this email to the webpage will automatically appear in your linkaGoGo bookmark collection. It adds the link in your linkaGoGo Inbox folder. If you don't already have an Inbox folder, it will automatically be created for you. To make sure it ends up in your linkaGoGo bookmark collection, you need to email it from the email address that you used to setup your linkaGoGo account with. If you don't remember what is in, you can look it up in your linkaGoGo account page. To get to the account page click on your username on your linkaGoGo home page.

Now besides the title and the link you can also add a description of  the link below the link in the email. You can mark keywords (tags) in the description with the # character. An example email would be like this:

Subject: linkaGoGo Home

The most #awesome #bookmark manager on the #internet.

When this email is send to it will create a bookmark in your linkaGoGo Inbox folder with a title "linkaGoGo Home". The url will be taken from the first line of the email ( and the description from the remaining email contents. All the # prefixed words will be added as keywords.In this case: awesome, bookmark, manager and internet. Note if you omit the description, the title will also be used for the description.

You may ask where do I find this browser email function. I'll cover this for both IOS (Iphone, Ipod touch and Ipad) as well as Android. I don't own a Windows 8 phone or a Blackberry. If anyone know how to do this on these devices feel free to add the steps in the comment section.

On IOS use the 'Mail Link to this Page' option from the  Action button at the top left of the screen on the IPad and and at the bottom on the Iphone and Ipod Touch. Once selected the following screen will appear.

The title and link are already filled out and you can add the description with keywords below the link.

With Android you need to click the Options button which will bring up the Options menu. Select the More option and from the list choose "Share Page". From the next list choose the email application you want use and now you see your email application with the subject prefilled with the title and email contains the link to the page.

Once you send the email with the link you will get a confirmation email back once it is added to your account (typically within 5 minutes). If it failed, the response email will describe what the problem is. Oh and since linkaGoGo is funded by subscriptions the feature is available for Plus (4.95 a year) and Premium members (24.95 a year).

Happy bookmarking....


Saturday, December 8, 2012

Change course and clean ship

It has been a while since I last posted on GoGolian. There are multiple reasons, the main one I want to say was not having time, but if I am honest it was more that I did not know what to do with my brainchild linkaGoGo.

I started linkaGoGo in April 2001. It grew originally out of my bad typing and as I always typed in bad urls. These took forever to resolve in to nothing or a website that I had no interest in. I tried to use the browser bookmarks features but got frustrated with their folder only oriented UI and the fact I used browsers on multiple machines and it was a nightmare to keep the bookmarks in sync.

Since then I added a whole bunch features that I needed in my use of linkaGoGo, which made my life a lot easier. Then I got requests from members also using linkaGoGo and added more features. Some I used as well others less.

Things changed a bit when another bookmarking website got bought by Yahoo. I thought I had an opportunity here and moved my focus from pure bookmarking to selling sponsored links, which worked, but caused a huge inflow of a different kind of user. People trying to promote their website by bookmarking it on every bookmarking site they could find. There are even services that allow you with one submit automatically a link to a number of website.

linkaGoGo ballooned and ended up with 1.5 million registered users and 650 million bookmarks. As a result of that I had to scale and invest to keep the service running. This year was pivotal as Google started to threaten all those folks that used linkaGoGo to promote their website to get it off some of linkaGoGo’s public pages or it would demote them in Google search result ranking, the result was I got zillions of people asking, begging and even threatening me to remove their links.

This summer I was ready to pull the plug, but then realized I would lose exactly why I started linkaGoGo. My need for a fast, convenient online bookmark manager. Pulling the plug was not an option I liked and decided to change course and clean ship. At the moment I’m in the process of focusing back linkaGoGo’s core: personal bookmarking. This has resulted in a number of changes and will continue to do more changes.

Things that have changed are that all public facing bookmarks have either a nofollow attribute on the page or the bookmark and according to Google’s policies should no longer be punished for being linked from another “non-content” related website. Still can’t believe the grand censorhip of our favorite “no-evil” search engine. Also removed all the advertising and sponsored links, unless there were running contracts, but they should be gone by September 2013. I also removed the large directory sites go/Sites and go/Directory. This had a positive impact on the load of the servers.

In the planning for the near future are a number of things. First clean out the database and only leave accounts of members that really use linkaGoGo as it was intended, by visiting their websites using their bookmarks on linkaGoGo.

Second is to remove free subscriptions, I’m still thinking about how to implement this. But basically I want to get rid of spammers and since linkaGoGo has no longer advertising income will need to increase subscription income. In the end linkaGoGo does not charge that much, only $4.95 for a Plus subscription and $19.95 for a full Premier subscription, and this is not per month, but per year. So I’m thinking of either a $.99 trial for 2 months (this will definitely get rid of spammers) or a 7 day free trial, which can then be upgraded to a Plus or Premium subscription.

 Third I also want to make the Premium subscriptions a little simpler by just providing the full Premium subscription.

Next is to upgrade the user interface, it still has the early 2000 look and it really could use a facelift. You can see an example of it on the linkaGoGo iPad page. I have also been thinking about browser plugins, made a Chrome extension prototype which look very promising.

So 2013 promises to become an exciting year for linkaGoGo. Let me know in the comments what you think of all this.


Monday, October 4, 2010

Tips & Tricks, Duplicate Finder

One of the nice features that helps you cleanup your bookmarks is the Duplicate Finder. Now before we go into the details of the Duplicate Finder, I’d like to define what a duplicate bookmark is. A duplicate bookmarks is a bookmark in your collection that has the same url, also known as location, for a website but has a different name and/or lives in a seperate folder.

Normally when you add a bookmark to linkaGoGo through the ‘Add to linkaGoGo’ script or the Add menu, it will warn you that a bookmark with that url already exists and in what folder it lives. So once you use linkaGoGo as your bookmark manager the changes are relative slim that you will create duplicate bookmarks.

However when you just imported your bookmarks into linkaGoGo, either from you local Internet Explorer favorites or from another bookmark manager, the chances are high that there will be duplicates. Note during the import you can indicate that you don’t want to import duplicates. The downside of doing this during the import is that you can’t control which one it will not import. So I advise to not check that during the import, but to import your bookmarks and then run the Duplicate Finder to remove any duplicates.

The Duplicate Finder will find all your duplicate bookmarks and orders them in a list by the url and groups the duplicates together. It also displays the name, whether it is a favorite, when you added and last visited the bookmark, and often you visited the bookmark.

So how do you now clean up these duplicate bookmarks? Here comes the magic of ‘Edit’ mode to the rescue. If you are not already in ‘Edit’ mode when starting the Duplicate Finder, you can enter Edit mode by clicking on the Edit link in the little description at the top of the Duplicate Finder screen.

When Duplicate Finder is in Edit mode it displays every bookmark with a checkbox. You can now easily mark bookmarks. At the top of the screen you see a toolbar. The toolbar has a move and a delete button. It also has a picklist of folders. So if you want to move the duplicates to a folder called ‘Review later’ for example, select that folder and click the Move button. If you just want to delete the Marked duplicates click on the Delete button and all the checked bookmarks can be deleted.

You can find the Duplicate Finder in the Tools section, on the left side of your linkaGoGo Home page (Make sure you have Tools section enabled under the Option/Page Style tab).

As you can see with the Duplicate Finder you have an easy way to quickly identify and cleanup your duplicate bookmarks.


Friday, September 24, 2010

GoGo Search

As expected from any self-respecting website linkaGoGo provides a search feature that in the linkaGoGo case allows you to search your bookmarks and folders.

You can access this Search feature from the LinkaGoGo Search menu, by adding the Search Toolbar to one of you linkaGoGo toolbars or by installing (see Add-ons page) it in your browser’s built-in Search feature.

This standard search feature follows the traditional “enter your keyword(s)”, hit enter or click a button and a new results page appears. GoGo Search is different in two ways: First it doesn’t require you to complete your keyword, but if you hesitate typing a little then without hitting an ‘Enter’ key or pressing a ‘Go’ button the results start appearing and if there are to many results you can continue to refine your search by continuing to type. Second the results do not appear on a new page but appear “inline” in your current linkaGoGo page and disappear when you clear the search query. This gives a much more immediate effect, hence the name GoGo Search.

GoGo Search does not have its own menu tab but it is available as a toolbar. And as GoGo Search is part of the Plus subscription it is not in your default linkaGoGo setup. You will need to add it to your Toolbars. You can do this through Options/Toolbars then from the list of Toolbars choose the ‘GoGo Search’ toolbar. In my setup I actually replaced the default linkaGoGo Search toolbar with the ‘GoGo Search’ toolbar. And once you do, you will never want to go back.


Sunday, September 19, 2010

LinkaGoGo's most powerful feature: Reminders

Here another repost, this was a tips and tricks post about one of linkaGoGo's most powerful features: reminders.

In an earlier post I talked about how I used a combination of folders and keyword/tag-searches to get to the bookmark that I need. However in my linkaGoGo setup in most cases linkaGoGo already has the bookmark that I need right on its Home page waiting for me. Thanks to the magic of the linkaGoGo toolbars.

LinkaGoGo toolbars are lists of bookmarks that appear on your linkaGoGo Home page. You can compare them with the Internet Explorer and Firefox links toolbar. You can put your most used bookmarks on this browser links toolbar, so they are right there to click on.

LinkaGoGo not only provides a toolbar where you can put your most used bookmarks yourself (the “Favorites toolbar”), but also provides toolbars with dynamic lists of bookmarks, such a toolbar that shows your most frequently visited bookmarks. As chances are you most likely want to visit these bookmarks again. And if not that bookmark will slowly disappear in oblivion, as they are displaced by more frequently visited bookmarks. Other types of toolbars include toolbars based on a keywords (tags), the contents of a folder or an RSS feed (similar to the Firefox Live bookmarks). In total there are 24 different types of toolbars. You can find and configure them under Options / Toolbars.

Today’s Tip is about a special kind of toolbar, the reminder toolbars. You must all have online newspapers, weekly/monthly magazines, blogs, websites you want to monitor on a regular basis. Examples I have are the The New York Times, The Telegraaf (Dutch newspaper), the Google Adsense website, Slashdot, the Usage Statistics for linkaGoGo, the Hot Deal club, all sites that I visit on a daily basis, once I visit them that day I normally don’t visit them until the next day. Other sites I have are Nielsen’s alertbox, PC world, PC Magazine, some Newspaper Columns, which a visit on a weekly basis. And I also have sites I visit on a monthly basis. Some sites I just visit once in a while, to check back, these are most of the time websites that are not often updated.

Here comes the reminder toolbar into play. The reminder toolbar displays the websites that you wanted to be reminded of on a particular day, once you clicked on it from the toolbar it disappears from the reminder toolbar until it is time to visit it again. So for example my New York Times bookmark appears every morning when I start up linkaGoGo in my reminder toolbar, I check out the site, sip some coffee read the news and when I go back to the linkaGoGo page, it disappeared to reappear the next morning. I might as well have the reminder toolbar, the website-visit-to-do list.

So how do you set this up? First you start by setting up reminders on some of your bookmarks. Think of a website you visit every day, now look it up in linkaGoGo and Edit its properties (Hover over the bookmark for a second or two and a menu will appear then click Edit, or click on the Edit menu and click the little pencil behind the bookmark). On the Edit page look for the ‘Reminder me’ property, by default it says ‘Never’. Click on the drop down and you can choose: daily, a particular day in the week, a particular day in the month or after a specified number of days. With the later choice you also have to indicate after how many days you want to be reminded again. Choose say ‘Daily’ and click OK. Now if you already visited that website that day it will not show in the reminder toolbar yet, until the next day. Do this for all your bookmarks that you visit on a regular basis and think of when you want to be reminded of them.

After you have set this up you are almost there, the only thing to do it to display the reminder toolbar. To do this go the Options page and find the toolbars tab. Decide if you want a Horizontal (appear on the top of the screen) or a Vertical one (appear on the left of the screen). For now pick Horizontal. Then choose the kind of reminder toolbar (it is like ordering a meal in a restaurant, choices, choices, choices.), there are 5 reminder toolbars one for each kind of reminder and one that displays all reminders. The last one is my favorite. Then modify the label if needed. Then choose how many entries you want to display on the screen and how may in a drop down list. Choose ‘6’ as the toolbar entries and ‘All’ in the Pull down entries. This should keep everything nicely on one line. Leave the numbers of characters to display at 20, if you have a small screen you can choose it to 15. Now click on the OK button to save the changes and bring us back to the Home page.

And voila, there appears a list of your reminders. Now every morning when you are still a little slow and just took that first sip of hot coffee, you don’t have to think what website to visit next, reminders already has them waiting for you.


Tuesday, September 14, 2010

IPhone development without Mac, Objective-C, Cocoa and Apple app store

Read this great book on (web) app development for the IPhone. And it rekindled my appetite for developing for the IPhone.

I had done some attempts to develop a native application for the IPhone platform. And it should be doable as hundreds of thousands of developers have done it before me. But I spend way too much time setting up my development environment to finally be able to do a simple app. Let alone learning the development platform. Then it all felt very proprietary, So I left it there, to perhaps coming back to it in some point in the future....

Then I read "Building iPhone Apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript" by Jason Stark. Within no time I was developing IPhone apps with the technologies I know and love.

So expect something soon...


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