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I bookmark and favorite at least 20 pages of useful information a day on stackoverflow, blogs and the web in general. I'm sure some of the advice and information I find online will be indispensable even after 20yrs (god willing stackoverflow should be alive :). Is there an easy way to mirror good websites without the hassle of going through 5-10 steps with tools like HTTrack? How do you store useful information you find in general?

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migrated from programmers.stackexchange.com Feb 15 '11 at 19:22

This question came from our site for professional programmers interested in conceptual questions about software development.

    
Although to follow up, I did write an entry not to long about specifically about this. My answer was Dropbox, Evernote, and Instapaper. –  Josh K Feb 15 '11 at 19:06
    
OP, I'm not sure if you are or not, but: please don't downvote answers you don't like. Downvoting is for answers that are incorrect. –  goblinbox Jul 7 '11 at 3:38

8 Answers 8

Opera and Internet Explorer has the "Save as single web page" option, which allows you to save a complete copy with the .mht extension.

Very, very useful.

Open again with IE or Opera, depending on what you have available.

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Have you tried social bookmarking sites like Delicious?

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I did and they are closing down soon. But, my question was to save the info on the pages not url(s). Thanks though! –  Kakira Feb 15 '11 at 18:59
    
That's why I moved my bookmarks into Springpad –  DilbertDave Feb 15 '11 at 19:01
    
Digg is also useful –  Mahmoud Hossam Feb 15 '11 at 19:21
    
Delicious isn't closing down, it was bought by YouTube founder Chad Hurley's company, AVOS. –  danhersam Jul 7 '11 at 5:48

I use Pinboard. One of the premium features it provides is the ability to save pages forever, so once you add a link it will automatically pull the page in and keep it in long-term storage.

Another alternative is to print to PDF and store that in Dropbox, but it will require a little extra tweaking to get the name in a decent format (some sites aren't very good at setting a reasonable page title)

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+1 for mentioning Pinboard :) –  trurl Jul 7 '11 at 7:30
    
+1 for Pinboard.in, amazing service –  pwhe23 Jan 29 at 19:25

I used Delicious in the past but have recently moved to Springpad. Not just for bookmarking but also for arranging all manner of different things. I've got a number of research & development projects on the go at the moment and I'm adding bookmarks, checklists, notes etc. You can keep everything private or you can share it - my public stuff is here.

I imported my Delicious bookmarks without any problems too. It may not work for you (or me for that matter) and does require a HTML 5 compatible browser for some of the features.

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3  
So many down votes for the answers here - but nobody steps up and says why they think they deserved it. –  DilbertDave Feb 15 '11 at 21:38
1  
Sometimes the innertubes are just cranky; there was a day back in March when I got several downvotes on a perfectly good answer. –  goblinbox Jul 7 '11 at 3:36

It depends of the type of information and the way you want it to be searchable.

Internet is about sharing information. Google and other search engines are about searching information. Having said that, the best way is to not save useful information locally, but instead to work on your search skills.

Let's say one day I forget how to implement a singleton in C#. I can either:

  • Spend hours searching through my Firefox favorites, hoping to find a page I added to favorites when I first learned, a few years ago, what a singleton is,
  • Or type "c# singleton" in Google and in a few seconds find the required information.

No favorites - no waste of time organizing them.

Of course, things are different if you are searching for images, music, videos, since today's search engines are not powerful enough to provide an intuitive and human-friendly way of finding media content.


Another thing: expect a web resource to be available forever until you need it. For example, Stack Overflow will probably not be closed tomorrow with all information completely removed:

  • the team behind SO understands well how to provide information in an open way, so there are few chances for SO to become just another Experts-Exchange waste,
  • and their disaster recovery plan is done correctly, so there are few chances of loosing everything by an accident.

Of course, maybe in twenty years, there will be no Stack Overflow. But are you sure that in twenty years, you will seriously need information you've found today, and you will be completely unable to find it with a search engine?


Finally, in some circumstances, you will achieve better results by using a knowledge base instead of a search engine.

For example, you can encounter the same problems with the same products again and again: a nasty and meaningless error message in WCF for example. The first time, when you will be learning WCF, you will spend a few days solving the problem. The second time, you will know that you've seen this error months before, but you've already forgotten how to deal with it, so you'll spend a few hours switching between Google, Visual Studio and different unhelpful websites. A third time, you'll spend half of an hour again, etc.

To avoid spending time solving the same issue again and again, you would be better to have your own searchable knowledge base where you store encountered problems with their possible solution which worked and has strong chances to work again the next time.

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A great answer, actually. +1. –  TFM Jul 7 '11 at 6:06

I had a recent blog post about it not too long ago. I found that Dropbox, Evernote, and Instapaper were my top choices.

To summarize:

Dropbox

Super simple file sharing that goes from any computer, online, and even a multitude of mobile devices with ease. Very easy to back something like Elements or Plain Text with Dropbox.

Evernote

"Bucket" mentality with high-powered searching and tags. Makes it great for storing more then just web clips but also images and notes.

Instapaper

Best $5 I spend on an iOS application. Tilt scrolling and a clear paper like view of whatever web page. I moved the entire "Learn You A Haskell For Great Good" book into it and am breaking it apart in chunks.

Of the three it looks like Instapaper would be your best bet.

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Diigo archives bookmarked pages, though they've introduced a 30-page limit on their free plan unless you're an educator and can get 20/month for free.

You could also look into collaborating with archive.org. If you're serious about archiving all that data they could probably use your help.

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In Google Chrome you can easily export your all bookmarks. It will save single html file on your hard disk on your desired location and just open that file in your any default browser and you will see the hyperlink of your bookmarks. Its done under the preferences>bookmarks manager or in old version hope no one is using press ctrl+shift+B and click on Tools tab and export the bookmarks of chrome.

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