We’ve all done it: you read an interesting article, and plan to share it with your friends or just for your own reference later. The next day, we think of it again, and can’t find where in the world the article was. Was that on AppStorm or Engadget? Or was it CNN? No, wait: maybe it was New Yorker.
So you promise yourself, next time, you’ll be more careful to bookmark stuff you want to save. Then, you bookmark it at the office, only to find that you’re trying to remember it when you’re out at lunch and only have your iPhone.
Online bookmarking is the best solution for this, but it’s usually too much trouble to click through 3 or 4 links just to save a small bookmark. What if your bookmarking tool could do the heavy lifting for you, so your favorite stuff online would be bookmarked automatically without so much as a thought? Pinboard, the increasingly popular bookmarking web app, includes a number of tools to automate bookmarking, so keep reading to see how it can automatically archive your favorite sites without you remembering to do anything special.
Pinboard: Automator for Bookmarking
There’s no reason Pinboard needs to be difficult to use. While it looks like one of the simplest web apps at first glance, it’s actually a very powerful bookmarking tool that can save you time and help you keep up the sites you want to remember without having to go to Pinboard.in each time.
Right in Pinboard, you can create new bookmarks, edit your existing bookmarks, and search through all of your bookmarks, tags, notes, and more. Drag the bookmarklet to your bookmarks bar, and it’ll work just like you’d expect an online bookmarking service to work.
The magic happens, though, when you integrate your other web app accounts. In your Pinboard account settings, you’ll find options to add your Delicious, Instapaper, Read it Later, Readability, and Google Reader accounts to Pinboard. Once you’ve added your username or feed URL, check the box underneath to automatically bookmark any links you add to your accounts. You can additionally choose to show that the bookmarks are unread or read, respectively, depending on what works best for you. Now, just keep using Google Reader, Instapaper, or any of the other apps as you normally do. Pinboard will automatically bookmark the sites and pages you add to the other services, so you’ll always find the articles you want in Pinboard no matter where you saved them.
Better yet, Pinboard has excellent support for Twitter built in. Just sign into your Twitter account via Oauth (up to 3 Twitter accounts allowed per Pinboard account), and Pinboard will automatically save an archive of everything you post on Twitter. Since Twitter doesn’t save an unlimited history of your Tweets, that’s a rather handy feature itself. But, better yet, you can select to have Pinboard automatically save any links you share on Twitter, or links in your Twitter favorites, as bookmarks in Pinboard. I usually don’t want to bookmark every link I share, but I use the favorites as a quick way to add links to Pinboard from Twitter. Once it’s activated, just favorite a tweet that includes a link you want to save, and Pinboard will automatically save it to your account.
Online Bookmarking as Simple as Native Bookmarking
Even in your normal browsing, saving Pinboard bookmarks doesn’t need to be difficult. From Pinboard’s Resources page, you’ll find high quality extensions for Firefox, Chrome, and Safari. These let you save bookmarks with a click, and bookmark links from your right-click menu. Plus, they let you save all open tabs as a tab set in Pinboard, which gives you an easy way to resume your current browsing session on a different computer or browser.
Using Pinboard From Other Apps
Many other apps include Pinboard integration today, which makes it easy to add bookmarks anywhere you are. The Pinboard Resources page lists many apps, including mobile and web apps, that have great integration with Pinboard. This way, you can save links or view your bookmarks without leaving the app you’re using.
One of the web apps that integrates best with Pinboard is Instapaper. One of the most popular apps for saving long articles to read later, your Instapaper account likely has many articles you’d love to have bookmarked in Pinboard to keep forever. However, you might not want to save everything you ever read in Instapaper to Pinboard. That’s where Instapaper’s own integration comes in. You can add your Pinboard, Evernote, Twitter, and other accounts to Instapaper, and then it will automatically save or post your favorites articles to your accounts. So, when I’m reading an article in Instapaper I like, I’ll favorite the article to share it with other Instapaper users and also bookmark it to my Pinboard account automatically. Win/win!
While RSS readers may have fallen out of style, they’re still a great way to keep up with stuff online. Odd are, you’ll come across tons of stuff in your RSS feeds that you’d like to bookmark, but again, bookmarking everything from Google Reader wouldn’t make much sense. Google Reader doesn’t offer integrated Pinboard support, but it does let you add other apps if you know want to enter.
Just open your Settings page in Google Reader, and select the Send to tab. Near the bottom, click Create a Custom Link and enter the following:
Icon Url: http://pinboard.in/favicon.ico
Save your changes, and now you’ll have a brand new Pinboard entry in your Send to box on the bottom of RSS feed entries. Whenever you come across an article you know you’ve got to remember, you’ve got a 1-click way to get it bookmarked into Pinboard for good.
We’ve all lost countless bookmarks over the years, but with online bookmarking services like Pinboard, there’s no reason to have to worry that you’ll lose that amazing article or recipe you find online. Whether you’re reading in Instapaper, looking through your Twitter account, browsing feeds in Google Reader, or just using your browser as normal, Pinboard has many options to make bookmarking effortless.
Most of us are overworked already, and don’t have time to think of saving links to yet another bookmarking service. Pinboard’s automatic bookmarking has been a huge timesaver for me. Do you use Pinboard, and have you ever added your other web app accounts to automatically bookmark?