Like most people I have a good number of web pages bookmarked. However I’ve noticed recently-in fact for quite a while now-that in reality I virtually never use most of them. In fact, what usually happens is that I bookmark something, and then I just forget that it’s there.
Why? Well, Google.
The performance of search engines has become so good these days that I find it much easier to simply search Google for the site that I want, instead of going/searching through the hierarchy of my bookmark folders.
Instead of Bookmarks>folder>subfolder>subsubfolder>subsubsubfolder — site Y
Google — Site Y
And baf, I’m there.
If you know the name of the website (and you usually do if it’s something that you’d bother to bookmark) you’ll get THAT web site as you’re first result 99.9% of the time. Even if you don’t know the name, a few good keywords will usually make your target appear on the first page of results. This tactic is of course more efficient for large websites, but I’m amazed by how well it works for small sites too, especially if you know their names.
The only bookmarks that I use regularly are those illustrious few that have been ennobled to the personal bar, the first of which is, of course, Google, followed by Yahoo! and then a baker’s dozen worth of others.
There are now bookmark websites, such as del.icio.us, that have put new twists on the idea of keyword bookmarking, but they’ve never won me over as my preferred way to bookmark…
So what do you think? Is bookmarking still pertinent? As Google and other search engines get better and better at reading our minds, are we going to see a day when browsers no longer offer a bookmark function?
Voilà, today’s existential question…