Tom Petrocelli's take on technology. Tom is the author of the book "Data Protection and Information Lifecycle Management" and a natural technology curmudgeon. This blog represents only my own views and not those of my employer, Enterprise Strategy Group. Frankly, mine are more amusing.

Friday, September 16, 2005

Web Clipping with Jeeves

In my line of work (as a technology analyst), you need to keep articles and informaiton that you find on the Web all the time. Company announcments, new regulations, news, you name it. I need to keep it. As a business owner who does a lot of business on the Internet, it's good to be able to store all those order forms as well.

In the past I had to save web pages to my hard drive. I found my hard drive filling up with useless web pages. Managing them was a bit of a pain as well. Worse yet, if I wanted access to these web pages while I was traveling, I had to make copies of them on my laptop, which predicably has a much smaller hard drive.

The best solution is web clipping. With web clipping, you keep a reference or copy of the page in an application that helps to organize the pages. I've mostly used Sage, an application that hooks into the Firefox browser as an extension. It makes it easy to save and manage clippings but still suffers from the problems of clogging my hard drive and lack of prortability.

So, it was with great excitement that I greeted the arrival of Web based clipping applications from Yahoo and Ask Jeeves. Both plug into your browser and give you a little toolbar to save pages to their servers. The toolbars have a bunch of other functions, mostly to help access their web sites, but the primary reason I care about them is the clipping. Now I can save my clippings to a web site where I can retrieve them whenever I want.

After a bit of goofing around I have come to the conclusion that the Ask Jeeves version (part of the MyJeeves Beta) is the best. Why? Because it is so easy to use. I can save clippings, save them different folders, even with a set of my own notes attached. All with the click of a button. Better yet, I can access my clipping whereever I am, assuming I have an Internet connection. I can also save my bookmarks/favorites as well for access on the road.

The other services are pretty good too, although not all the bugs are worked out yet. At least for now, MyJeeves is where it's at (pun intended).

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