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Show HN: Escape from Bookmark Hell (contraterrene.com)
41 points by Turing_Machine on Sept 30, 2013 | hide | past | web | favorite | 60 comments

Haters gunna hate, but I like the spirit of the presentation.

This is better than a flashy flat one-page design with a lot of color and no substance. It's more personal, and is a unique touch. I know why he created the product, what it does, and how to get it.

As for the product itself, I think there's a real need for better bookmark organization that's done well. I'm not sure if this is it, because from the features exhibited it seems a lot like just using Evernote Web Clipper. I'd like to see features that help organize my bookmark folders better, maybe using tags for links and folders or some other creative organization tactic. Evernote WC can do this, but it doesn't do it in a lightweight way where I can get good overview of my links.

Better yet, having a relation graph would be nice too--grouping by links added in a certain session or around a certain concept. For example, I want to find all of the links I found when I was looking up "CSS vertically centering div".

Anyway, great work OP.

Allow me to explain (my) hate.

I saw this while browsing from my phone at a coffee shop and thought to myself, "hey, bookmarks are a pain in the ass, let's have a look"

The product could be awesome, but it took so long to get to the point that I gave up, and when I did, my history was completely full of worthless slides that it was easier to close the tab than go back.

This presentation is a great example of bad design. It wastes the readers time by failing to convey useful information quickly. I am forced to sit through a seemingly endless stream of totally worthless transitions and effects.

A presentation like this reflects very badly on the product it represents. It assumes that it is more important than me, the person on the other end of the keyboard.

So you're saying it should be designed more like http://www.piku.jp/ then? :-)

Unless you're planning on selling coupons in Japan for a startup that I worked with three years ago, then hell no. It should be designed like Instapaper.

+1 - totally agree. It's good to see a product described in a different, fresh way. Bugs me when people criticise people's projects, when half the time they've done little themselves.

I like the idea of tagging links, it would make looking for bookmarks way easier.

What about Pocket?

It's a pure client-side personal search engine for bookmarks, using HTML5 local storage. You can add (and search) arbitrary text to the record. It can import your existing bookmarks, too.

Sorry about the vertigo. :-)

If you want to skip the presentation and go straight to the live site: http://pse.contraterrene.com/engine/

I liked the presentation, didn't like the history-filling aspect.

But what I don't likeĀ is the fact that I have to change the way I bookmark things, and I certainly don't like the fact that I've got to highlight text. Can't you change it to a plugin which hijacks the default add bookmark feature, and indexes the text of the page automatically?

The latter is probably more important.

You've definitely identified a real problem here.

"I liked the presentation, didn't like the history-filling aspect." +1

Bookmark hell? What about click through stuff hell?

Needless to say, 5 clicks through, I gave up.

How about a normal link to a normal page explaining your offer?

And has cheek to say:

"Cross-platform, cross-browser Works just about everywhere (except Internet Explorer, sorry about that) (Need IE support? Email for a price quote :-))"


Here's the deal: this is a personal project I wrote for myself (and anyone else who wants to use it).

I decided some time ago that I wasn't going to worry about making stuff work in IE unless I was getting paid for it. In this case, I'm not. It's free (it doesn't even have ads). I don't use IE. I don't even know anyone who uses IE. Even my older non-technical family members use Chrome (or Safari, if they have Macs).

I've spent way too much time working around IE brokenness to want to do it for fun.

Microsoft has had 18 years to fix IE. They still haven't done it. At this stage, it's not my problem (again, unless I'm getting paid).


Sorry, in that presentation you just come off as jumping onto the "look at me, aren't I rad for not supporting IE" smartarse bullshit wagon. Perhaps leave an explanation as to why even IE10 isn't supported?

I really don't want to have an IE flame war here. "Not supported" means just that: "not supported". It might work in IE 10 (or more likely, 11). I don't know. If it doesn't, I won't fix it. Not for free.

Microsoft has $68 billion in cash. They can afford a lot more developer time than I can.

That's fair enough. Given you aren't actually charging anything for it, then there's no cheek. I'm hoping that most people understand that this is a personal project.

FWIW, ignore these comments. Their tone is ridiculous and not constructive. Instead of saying "I think that there's an issue with clicking on the back button, here's a pointer to fix it", they've decided to use non-constructive criticism along the lines of "You're a loser because you can't allow people to use the back button".

Honestly, I've never understood this sort of thing. It smacks of elitism, but the underlying causes is a deep seated unease about the commenter's own confidence.

Still prefer http://historio.us - it scrapes the pages you bookmark for better searching too. I want my bookmarks available to me on any computer, not just the ones I happen to have installed certain software on.

Thanks for polluting my web history so that I can't just hit "back" to get to HN. :P

I present to you three alternatives for better browsing:

1. CTRL+click

2. Middle-click

3. Right-click link -> Open in new tab.

One of them should (hopefully) work if you are using a browser that supports tabbed windows.


EDIT: Almost forgot this one: If you are browsing on your mobile device, long-press -> "open in new tab" or "open in background tab" should (ideally) work.

Your long-winded reply of "just use tabbed browsing" does not address the fact that this is a sloppy UI choice. You're also implicitly stating that when someone makes a website it's ok for them to base their design decisions around the assumption that the user will be using tabbed browsing in such a fashion.

Then tell him that specific bit? Your short-reply about his presentation polluting your browser history didn't add much, either. :P

IMHO, I think he chose reveal.js because it was so highly regarded on HN just a few days ago. I don't think he would've expect that people would comment on that rather than his actual efforts, a.k.a. the bookmark storage and search.

When someone makes a website, they always base their designs around certain assumptions; his was to assume that people usually open new links in tabs. (I do, too.) Over time and after feedback is when these decisions are either vindicated or proven wrong.

I apologize for the passive-aggressive nature of my comment. It's just that the HN hive-mind has been quite snobbish towards budding developers of late and it has left a bad taste in my mouth. Personally, I believe that every developer who does a "Show HN" deserves at least one positive comment for every criticism they receive. YMMV, of course.

I'd probably have read your comment in a positive light if you weren't so aggressive. The author would probably like to you to be civil to them as well. Is this so hard?

It wasn't intended to be aggressive. It was meant as more of a lighthearted sarcastic jab (hence the emoticon). I guess this didn't translate well.

That's the problem with this medium I'm afraid. Often it comes off other than we meant, and feelings get hurt. For the record, I'm glad there was no real malice behind the comment :-)

It's reveal.js, when I wrote my own presentation software I decided against hijacking the back button - it's pretty annoying :(

I liked the concept but I have a few niggling issues:

> The link opens to the presentation. I'd rather it open at the /engine/ and have a link to the presentation.

> Copy all the points of the presentation into a page and keep that handy for accessibility. Will probably help tone down the entitled, asshole-y comments a bit.

> Explain clearly where the data is being stored. Where does the bookmarks file that I exported actually go? Where is this database that you mention? On your server? On my local machine?

> Can you convert the independent page/tab so that it opens in a modal window instead? Will help me remember the context of the page. YMMV, of course.

> Convert the menu into a sidebar and delete the link/tab/button entirely.

Just a few thoughts/ideas/suggestions/opinions. YMMV. I like it but not sure how I can effectively to use it yet. Good luck!

This is pretty neat, when I finally got to the tab i opened it on, it was on the last slide (of a deck i did not know existed). When I clicked to try i had no idea what was going on. My suggestion, write your presentation in paragraph form and put it with the product somewhere.

Thanks. Good idea.

What is this? Sorry, but I'm not going to watch shapes flying around my screen to find out.

Great idea, I've been meaning to do something like this since forever and it always got sidetracked. Big plus on the ability to free-text search all the content (not just title/url/etc...). I am not sure if any other service offers this for free (though Google might). It's a big fail [for me] to have a bookmarking service that stores my URLs but doesn't allow me to search all of the text.

As someone who has been using the same bookmarking service since about 2006 and has several thousand bookmarks related to various development domains/langs/etc; this is very useful.

1. Fantastic use of current web technologies.

2. Localized for privacy-minded individuals.

3. Stupid simple to use.

Fantastic tool! Might not be everyone's cup of tea, but Rome wasn't built by the Internet Peanut Gallery. :)

Keep up the good work!

I use org-mode and emacs now for bookmarks.

Org-protocol + bookmarklets makes it easy, just click the "Bookmark" bookmarklet and it sends the URL/Description (anything on the page that I want really) to emacsclient which uses my own capture template and prompts me for some keywords.

C-c / /, ack, and ctags makes searching those bookmarks very fast and easy for things I vaguely remember!

I built something that'll store my bookmarks via Dropbox's datastore. I haven't added search yet, but it has tagging:


I'm feeling dizzy.

I like the idea and the locality of it all, and I like the execution. However, I've been using dragdis for a while now and it solves most of my bookmarking needs in a similar way (though 'cloud' based). Regardless though - this is a very nice solution.

The slideshow is making me dizzy. I think it would be better without the transition.

I'm sad to say that I gave up reading it before it was finished because of exactly this. On a large screen, it's really disorientating.

Transition removed. Thanks!

I really like this. Nice presentation and cool app. The only problem is, I'm a big fan of synchronized bookmarks which work on all my versions of Chrome. For now, I'm going to just attempt to organise my bookmarks :)

The way I organize my bookmarks. Just remove the title and leave the ico. http://i.imgur.com/WEujxYk.png

Me too (tho I also use folders to group sometimes), but that has nothing to do with the article or the solution to the problem :)

This is for people with more than 30 bookmarks

That's not bookmarks, that's a minimal quick-dial.

What do you do for pages where you say "this is really good, I'll save this"?

There's this little thing called del.icio.us in which it's possible to achieve the exact same functionality (and more with some social features), have you heard of it?

Of course I have. I don't want my bookmarks to be "social", though. Nor do I want to upload them for data mining by a commercial service.

Really like that the whole thing is a bookmarklet, good choice.

Evernote web clipper.


Great tool, btw it would have been wonderful if it could support accessing bookmarks from any machine. I doubt' it supports in its current form?

Too bad that they aren't stored in the cloud. I want my bookmarks to be synced across my devices.

Some kind of cloud sync would definitely be useful. On the other hand, there's something to be said for pure client-side. Note that the site is still up despite making the front page of HN. :-)

None of the images load for me, unless I open them in a new tab and hit 'refresh'.

doesn't chrome have this built in?

going a step further, i'd like full text search of every page I've ever visited. bookmarking, even a single click, is a hassle and easily forgetten when grokking many pages in quick succession.

Ctrl+H is halfway there (but no FT search of pages)

Did he just reimplement "Send to OneNote" and parts of OneNote itself?

Terrible presentation. Unless I'm missing something, Scrapbook on FF has been doing all this for me for a couple of years. Admittedly it is not supported as yet for > v17 but otherwise it's a terrific tool.

Classic Opera feature.

Select text, context menu, "Copy to Note".

cool tool but one of the advantages of using Safari is seamless integration between my iPhone and Safari Bookmarks

This is similar to kippt.com.

As a user of Kippt, this is patently false.

The intro was very long and boring. You should be able to explain exactly what your service does while standing on one leg. That spiel would give someone a vicious leg cramp.

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