Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Visual Bookmarking - We Heart It (we♥it)

Visual Bookmarking
I have a vast collection of bookmarks that I've collected over the years. I often revisit one only to be dumbfounded by why I bookmarked the site in the first place, the page no longer exists, the image or the video behind the reason I bookmarked the page is no longer active/available, etc.

As I slowly comb through and clean up/out my bookmarks, I've come to realize that in this day & age of social media I really don't need to bookmark an entire page. Some times I want just the text. And some times, I want just images or the video. And other times, I want the whole site preserved and saved to my computer's hard drive.

I use different solutions for each of the three. For the 1st one, I use a Google product (more on that on a different day). And for the last one, I use a piece of software, which I've enjoyed having for a number of years. But for bookmarking (not saving) images and/or video, I've come to find one service to be the easiest: weheartit.com
we heart it
I come across many many great images, photos (yes there's a difference between the two) and videos that I want to bookmark/remember. Sometimes I want to look at them all on one page either by category/tag or just have them all there. That's where weheartit (we♥it) comes.

Are there other services out there? Yes, there are plenty. To name a few, there's the by-invite-only ffffound.com, which is really aimed more for the artsy type. Then there's dropular.net, which's another invite-only service; except this one is "mostly designed for fashion designers, photographers, architects, graphic designers and artists." Then there's vi.sualize.us. If I wasn't using weheartit, I'd likely be using vi.sualize.us; but I like weheartit's ease of use and simplicity. Of course, there are many others; but these are the ones that come to mind at the moment.

I love it
So how do I use it? Well, when I come across something I like ... something that I want to remember for later ... but mostly something I find inspirational and/or just beautiful, I ♥ it.

More specifically, weheartit provides a bookmarklet that I assigned (in Firefox only) a keyword to ("loveit"). From there, while I'm on a page with the photo/image/video I like, I simply type "loveit" (without the quotes, of course) in the browser's URL and hit enter. I immediately get the pink border around the objects of that page allowing me to click on the heart of the one I'm interested in saving. Voilà.

If I wanted to, I could then use a URL shortener like bit.ly (I use their sister shortener called j.mp) and tweet or post on Facebook an image or video I liked. In a way, making my own twitpic.com replacement.

Are you using a visual bookmarking service? Which one? How are YOU using it? Let us know in the comments.  ▣

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