Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Bookmarking Web Sites

Have you ever wanted to keep a record of the useful web sites you have discovered? Do you wish to share with friends, family, and colleagues the sites you visit with greater ease? Perhaps you have already begun to use the bookmarking feature that Mozilla Firefox offers or the Favorites menu in your Internet Explorer browser. The social networking web site, Del.icio.us (http://del.icio.us), allows its anyone to create an account that allows them to record and organize all the sites they visit. These sites can be accessed via this account from any computer in the world that has access to the internet.

For a tutorial in a slide-presentation format go to this web site: http://www.slideshare.net/adrian.muller/delicious-tutorial. Many find that the help page in del.icio.us answers all the questions for getting started: http://del.icio.us/help.

How do I get started?

1. Go to http://del.icio.us and register for an account.

2. It just requires a username, your full name, and a password.

3. Install the del.icio.us icons on the task bar of your internet browser. Click here to learn more about how to install icons. If you use Internet Explorer go here: http://del.icio.us/help/ie/extention. For Mozilla Firefox users go here: http://del.icio.us/help/firefox/extion.

How do I use the icons?

1. The icon shaped in the form of a checkered square takes you directly to your del.icio.us account. Here you can browse other peoples’ bookmarks, organize your bookmarks with tags, and post new web sites to your account with the “post” link.

2. The “tag” icon allows you to save a web site address to your account as you work on the internet. When you return to your account you can see how many other persons have “tagged” the sites you have “tagged.”

What is tagging?

1. Tagging allows you to organize your saved web sites by describing them with keywords that you think are most appropriate.

2. Your “tags” or keyword descriptors appear as an alphabetical list along the right-hand side of your account or as a “tag cloud,” which looks more like a paragraph. Tag clouds give you the opportunity to visualize which tags you use the most, because the most-frequently-used tags appear in a larger, bolder font than the rest.

3. When entering your tags remember to exclude commas between your terms, otherwise those words will always appear with commas. If you want to keep two words together as one descriptor, you can do one of several things: do not enter a space between the terms, enter a period between the two terms, abbreviate the terms, etc.

How do I let others see the web sites I have saved to my account?

1. Give them the following link: http://del.icio.us/username. This link can be included in an email or an IM. It’s that quick and simple.

2. Let them know your username, so they can type it into their browser-address box. To view mine just click on the following link: http://del.icio.us/sjardine. If you only want them to view a few subject specific web sites you can even give them the following link: http://del.icio.us/username/tag. For a real example, look at some of the web sites I have “tagged” or described as “books”: http://del.icio.us/sjardine/books. Note: if they do some clicking within your account they will have the opportunity to see the rest of your bookmarks.

3. Your friends can create their own account and “add” you to their “network” and vice versa, so you can each view what the other is finding on the internet at any given time.

If I want to browse everyone’s bookmarks within the whole del.icio.us system, how do I do that?

1. A search box appears near the top of your account and to the right-hand side. Enter a topic of interest and click the “Search” button to find other sites tagged by the rest of the del.icio.us community.

2. A drop-down menu allows you to choose if you only want to search among your bookmarks, delicious, or the entire web.

Where do I go to manage my account?

1. Click on the “settings” link to delete account, rename tags, delete tags, bundle tags, import bookmarks, integrate your delicious bookmarks with your Facebook account, send bookmarks daily to your blog, etc.

2. Also remember to use the “help” link to answer any other questions you may have.

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