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Pinboard

The Internet has already seen a couple of bookmarking services rise and decline. Pinboard1 is still relatively new and yet it has already established itself a worthy competitor to the establishment.

At first I was hesitant because I could not see the benefit of gathering my bookmarks somewhere on the Internet. Every browser worth its salt comes with a bookmark administration feature. So why bother?

Here’s why:

  • Pinboard comes with the ability to share bookmarks with others.
  • Every bookmark can be accompanied by a description (which, admittedly, is also supported by the bookmark managers integrated with most browsers).
  • It is possible to access the bookmarks from literally everywhere.
  • Search works great.
  • It is possible to attach tags to bookmarks2
  • Third-party apps are available for OS X and iOS.

Especially the availability of apps for iOS is interesting to me. The prototype (at least in my personal order of discovery) is Pinbook.

It works great with a single exception: it is incredibly difficult to edit the description of a bookmark. That is, after closing the editor control for the description text the previous text appears again in the description of the bookmark and the change has disappeared. Bummer.

On the plus side, Pinbook is very powerful with respect to editing tags attached to a bookmark. When typing in characters into the edit field for tags, Pinbook will provide completions for existing tags that matched the text in the edit field.

This is very nice because by that you don’t need to remember every single tag and can still reuse tags if you remotely remember their names.

And then there are other apps, like Pinner or Pinstrel that support editing the bookmark description just fine but which unfortunately fail to provide the level of assistance that Pinbook offers for the manipulation of tags.

Lesson learned: there are times where you just have to use several different apps for the same purpose just to be able to do things right. However, I still hope that one of the three (or, maybe, another contender) fixes its problems and properly implements the required use cases.

Update 2013-02-07: It seems that the latest update to Pinbook has fixed the issue with editing the description. Well done.

  1. Pinboard has been created by Maciej Cegłowski.

  2. I rarely use tagging somewhere else. But in Pinboard, I use tagging heavily and it makes a lot of sense to me.

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