[sclug] Using a Wiki to store bookmarks

John Kennedy skebi69 at gmail.com
Fri Jan 25 19:36:57 UTC 2008

On Friday 25 January 2008 19:23:53 ed wrote:
> Spencer Collyer wrote:
> > Hi,
> >
> > I've got a slightly-left-field usage of a wiki planned, and I'm wondering
> > if anyone could recommend a good one to use to implement it.
> >
> > Basically, I want to store my web browser bookmarks in a wiki. This makes
> > more sense to me than having them on a menu, for a couple of reasons.
> >
> > Firstly, I use several computers around the house - one in the office,
> > and a couple of laptops - so having one central repository for my
> > bookmarks makes sense. I don't see any point using one of the online
> > bookmark repositories, as I've no interest in sharing them.
> >
> > Secondly, I have a *lot* of bookmarks, and have them heavily categorised
> > on my bookmark menu, so sometimes I have to go down three or four menu
> > levels to get to the category I want. This is fine if it's just one
> > bookmark from that submenu, but gets annoying if (as often happens) I'm
> > working my way through a load of pages on the same or related menus, so
> > having them all on a tab I keep permanently open would make a lot of
> > sense.
> >
> > Thirdly, if they are on a web page, I can easily add comments alongside
> > the actual links, just as a quick reminder if I need one of what the page
> > is about and so on.
> >
> > In order to make this easier, I have a couple of requirements.
> >
> > 1) I want to be able to easily convert my bookmarks into a set of pages
> > (one per sub-menu) that I can easily load into the wiki. To do this I'll
> > probably write a Perl script to parse the bookmarks.html file and
> > generate a set of wiki pages ready to be used. So ideally it would be
> > easy to get the Wiki to accept externally generated content like this.
> I think, because things change with the wiki backed, that it's easiest
> to use WWW::Mechanize to publish the data using a web browser style
> interface to the pages.
> Once upon a time I tried a few things to create pages via the Mediawiki
> database, but gave up as I was missing something somewhere and decided
> that I was going about it the wrong way. It's probably easier to use the
> web pages to create items. We know what the format is going to be like,
> so why duplicate efforts?
> > 2) I want to be able to write a Firefox extension that will allow me to
> > emulate the current 'bookmark page' functionality, but store the bookmark
> > in the appropriate wiki page. I'm probablygoing to need an API that
> > external programs can use for this, or some other way to get
> > externally-generated changes into the wiki? I know I can cut'n'paste the
> > bookmark, but it would be nicer if it could be done by emulating current
> > bookmarking.
> I really don't know much at all about extensions for firefox. What I can
> tell you however is that I've moved completely away from firefox because
> it's just too slow now as a browser. Iceape is the way forward for me.
> This sort of extension would have to either contact the wiki
> pages/database once or on N minutes to obtain a (extensive) database of
> your links.
> If this happens just by category it might be ok, e.g. getting the root
> categories only, and then each submenu as required. This could create a
> bit of network latency for you, I don't know.
> There is an alternative solution that I've seen for firefox that syncs
> bookmarks with a FTP server of your choice. I'm not certain of it's
> concurrency, e.g. if two people (A and B) are sharing the same bookmarks
> and A and B update at the same time etc, it's probably last write wins.
> > Thanks in advance for your attention.
> >
> > Spencer Collyer

Why not use the Foxmarks extension to Firefox. It is updated automatically 
whenever you add a new bookmark. Your bookmarks aren't shared either. I use 
it to keep all my bookmarks sync'd.

The opinions expressed in this e-mail are mine alone and are not endorsed by 
(or agreed by) my employer, who ever that may be at the time...

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