a combination of self-hosting and not re:bookmarks

On the one hand, I like making my little garden pages with themed link collections, describing links and interspersing them with quotes and stuff. I’d like to do more of them! I have several planned. But it takes time and effort to do them nicely.

And in the meantime, putting a link somewhere so I can just keep it for later needs to be painless so I actually do it instead of having forty tabs open. I use firefox on all of my computers and so I can push tabs back and forth and access my bookmarks, but it’s really easy to loose bookmarks when I have a lot of them.

So I’m back to playing around with raindrop.io because it’s painless and I can share and whatnot, and I figure when I have time to work on a garden page it’s easy to round everything up but in the meantime I have somewhere to put it. So I’m wondering are there areas where you use a combination of self-hosting and hosted services? Is there a bookmarking tool you’d recommend for self-hosting?


This is probably going to seem hella basic, but I just stick links in a text file. Entries look like this:

Information about "2112" by Rush from the band, with lyrics

article that says trans rights and refers to the work of Judith Butler

announcement for a HBO Max adaptation of Madeline Miller's novel CIRCE.
I'll believe it when I see it.

The upside to this approach is that you probably already have all the software you need. Any text editor will do. You could manage your bookmarks in Notepad.EXE that’s all you’ve got.

Plain text is also eminently searchable. I can type CTRL+F and type in “2112” to find my link to the Rush song.

The downside is that you might be alt-tabbing between your browser and editor.

PS: it doesn’t have to be a literal *.txt file. A Google doc or an Office 365 doc will do, too, if that’s what you’re used to and you’re OK with having your links in the cloud.

The problem I tend to run into, and this is admittedly quirky and unique to my situation, is that I use multiple computers, and during the work day I have my access limited via vpn so I cannot access certain sites. So I could use a local text file, but then it wouldn’t be accessible on another computer, and I could use a text file that was backed up to google drive or dropbox but then I wouldn’t be able to access it at work. (This is also why I stopped using notion, because work blocked it.)

Ideally what I want is something where I can stick half a dozen tabs I haven’t finished with at the end of the workday and then pull them up on my phone while I take my kid to basketball or on my laptop or my home desktop or my tablet later, depending on what I’m doing. Having them be sharable would be a bonus but not a requirement.

My solution to using the same file on multiple machines probably wouldn’t work for you, then. I just stick it in git, push to the remote repository, and pull changes on other machines as needed.

Unless your job doesn’t deny you access to GitHub.

While not exactly on topic, perhaps this post on bookmarking strategies may be of some use: How do I save links for later? by Chris Coyier (2023-08-20)

EDIT: For what it’s worth, I also use raindrop.io. Personally, I find it great for saving links, but the discipline to look through them afterward / periodically still lies on me, yo.