Bookmarks, a lot

I wrote an app to keep track of bookmarks. It’s called Bookmarks-a-lot.

Try out the live version of Bookmarks-a-lot.

I wrote this to try out working with React. I had been looking to strengthen my skills and I thought that building something like this would be simple and fun. It was fun, I guess, but not so simple.

  1. React can sometimes be a bit strange, to me. Functional programming is not something I have much experience with, and I find it strange that something so popular can be so… esoteric.

  2. Firebase is weird. I’ve mostly worked with things like mysql and postgres. I don’t think it was too different, in the end, but at first it was difficult getting used to working with these type of datastores. But I think I got the hang of it.

Running on Fumes

Here’s how these things generally work with me. I create a new project, and I have to come up with a name. Ugh, names. Since I’m in a hurry to get started, I usually just name the thing something stupid, like Gascan, telling myself that later, I’ll come back with a really good name, this one is just temporary. That never happens. The hastily named project inevitably remains named the stupid thing. And so it was with this project.

This time, I chose the name “Bookmarks-a-lot”. Which is a marker from my childhood:

remember these?

Apparently they still exist as a wholly owned subsidiary of the Avery corporation.

Cheaper to print, I guess

So I patterned my branding after the old markers I remember.

When I was kid, we had Sharpies, and Marks-a-lots. Sharpies were for fine print, and Marks-a-lot were for, oh, say, filling in giant fields of color on a poster. They smelled. Good? Bad? That’s up to you.

The Future, Kevin?

This thing is very very simple. I have plans, though, because I’ve never really come across a bookmarking service that I really liked.

  1. Make a bookmarklet, to make it super easy to add bookmarks. This bookmarklet will also provide the screenshots (I think! Maybe this will be difficult. I don’t think I can do screenshots unless this app has a backend component.)

  2. A bunch of little small things, like adding pagination. Making it look better. General “improvements”.

  3. Taking advantage of Firebase’s email-based sign in. I really like this feature and I think it would be cool to try to implement.

  4. I want to be able to import and export bookmarks. Maybe I can use the Netscape bookmarks format.

So, yeah. A work in progress, like everything. Check it out!