Three Tips for Smart Bagging

Hey, thanks for using BagTheWeb! We are continuously working to improve the site. During the past months, we worked on upgrading our site from low version development language to higher version one in order to improve performances. In the next few months we will release a big makeover to the user interface to make it cleaner and faster, and hopefully make everyone happy.

Recently more and more users ask us how to better using Bags for their purpose. Today we start sharing a series of Bagging tips with you.

Update Bag It bookmarklet

bagi it bookmarklet

The Bag It bookmarklet is a tool that makes it easy to add webpages and bags into your bags. Best of all, you can use it from anywhere on the web, not just on BagTheWeb.com.

If you have installed the Bag It bookmarklet onto your browser, it should work fine now. If you use Chrome browser and find the Bag It bookmarklet does not work. You may go the following page and re-install it.

http://www.bagtheweb.com/tool/welcome

Upgraded rich media embedding feature

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The rich media embedding feature has been upgraded to support more than 23 major sources. Check this demo bag to see the list:

http://www.bagtheweb.com/b/awJdD2

All you need to do is adding a link to a bag, and the video or photo will be recognized automatically and become embedded into the bag. You can also use the Bag It bookmarklet too.

Use Re-bagging for discovery

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You probably know we have already added a feature called Re-bagging.

The idea of Re-bagging is very simple. If you see a link item in any bag, just click the Rebag button below the link. Then you can add this link item to your bags. The following bag guides you in using this feature.

http://www.bagtheweb.com/b/DUfdrO

Join the Bagging community

One more thing. If you are on Google+, you are welcome to join our Bagging community on GOOGLE+.

Next week, we will share more useful bagging tips with you.

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Improved Hashtag function, Links page, Text-only mode, and Print button

Hey, the holiday season is around the corner! While you are busy putting up Christmas trees and shopping for gifts for family and friends, BagTheWeb is working on another update to provide you with an improved Hashtag function and three other new features. Here is a brief introduction of these cool things.

1. Improved Hashtag

The new hashtag feature is more powerful than the old one. Now it can (1) help you organize your bags, (2) help you explore other people’s bags, (3) make the whole system smarter.

– A new bag description field that allows hashtagging. You can add hashtags by editing the bag description field even before publishing your bags.

bag description hashtags

– Recommending bags with hashtags. If you are updating bags you created a while ago, you can recommend them to your followers with hashtags that describe the newest links you are adding. You can also use hashtags to recommend bags created by others.

– Commenting on bags with hashtags. The comment field also allows hashtags now. If you see a bag that do not have appropriate hashtags yet, you can add hashtags to it via the comment field. This way, you “push” this bag onto the public hashtag page and make it easier for other users to find.

– Filter by hashtags. Now you can see a “filter by hashtags” button on all users’ bagspace pages. You can click this button and choose a hashtag to filer bags users created and recommended. On your bagspace, the “filter by hashtags” button can be found on the All Bags page, Draft Bags page, Published Bags page, Private Bags page, Recommendations page, and Favorites page.

Filter by hashtags - BagTheWeb - 3

– Improved public hashtag page. A public hashtag page now has two new choices: (1) “tags that may be related” at the sidebar; (2) a personal hashtag section. If you click a hashtag from one user’s profile, you will see three sections: “by all”, “by this user”, and “by you”.

– Two groups of hashtags on profile page. We separate the hashtags you have used into two groups: (1) Hashtags used on your bags, and (2) Hashtags used on others’ bags.

2. Links page

The newly added Links page under your bagspace is a private page like Favorite page. Only you can see this page at your bagspace. The Links page displays all links you bagged under four categories: all, draft, published, and private.

Links page -BagTheWeb - 2

The Links page has two view modes. The default mode is Simple view which only displays Links’ titles and dates. The Expand view adds link’s description and shows the titles of bags where the link resides.

The Links page allows users to Export links as a HTML file. Also, users can search for links there.

3. Text-only mode

Even without signing in to our website, you can now see a text-only mode of a bag page.

see text mode

The text-only mode allows you to copy visual or HTML format of all links within a bag. Then you can paste these links to your blog, text file, email edit box or other files.

text-only mode - visual

4. Print button on a bag page

The Comment button at the right top corner of a bag page has been replaced by a Print button. Now you can print all links within a bag.

print button

If you want to make the world greener, you can use this button only when you have to do it. For example, if you build a bag for your trip, it’s still useful to have a paper copy of it in hand to view the information while you do not have web access.

OK, that’s our introduction. Even the new features seem useful, we still want to see how much you like them and thus are eager to hear your feedback.

You may want to check out the following bags to see screenshots.

(1). New feature: Filter by hashtags
http://bagtheweb.com/b/heY8XP

(2). Public hashtag page
http://bagtheweb.com/b/GMepay

(3). How to create hashtags on BagTheWeb?
http://bagtheweb.com/b/JuvbY0

(4). New feature: Links page
http://bagtheweb.com/b/CLtpvy

(5). New feature: Text-only mode
http://bagtheweb.com/b/URHQYv

(6). Print button on a bag page
http://bagtheweb.com/b/tRJypd

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

2011 is a wonderful year. Thanks to all of you for staying here with us through the year. We have received many warm thank-you messages from you and learned a lot from you. We are working together to make the web more useful for the world.

Multi-bagging bookmarklet and Quick-bagging box

As you may notice we just released several new features on BagTheWeb. We are pleased to introduce them to you and hope you will find them useful.

1. Multi-bagging bookmarklet
Many users suggested that we add a “multi-bagging” capability to the bookmarklet and we listened. Now it comes! You can add a webpage link to multiple bags at one time through the “bag it” bookmarklet.

Multi-bagging bookmarklet-1

2. Quick-bagging at personal homepage
Now if you sign into our site, you will see a “Quick-bagging” box above the bagstream section where you see upcoming bags from people you follow. Just paste a URL in the Quick-bagging box, click “bag it” button, then a webpage link is already in your bag(s).

The Quick-bagging box and the Multi-bagging bookmarklet use similar user interfaces. Also, multi-bagging capability is included in the quick-bagging process.

Quickbagging - BagTheWeb - Step 1

3. New personal homepage
We also modified the personal homepage by making the sidebar more useful, providing faster access to your bags and easier exploration of the bagging community.

amazing_social_bagging_experience

Together, these new features bring us a coordinated performance. We hope you will enjoy the improved bagging experience.

You may want to check out the following bags to see screenshots and tips.

1.Multi-bagging Bookmarklet
http://bagtheweb.com/b/DZfS84/

2.Quick-bagging at Personal Homepage
http://bagtheweb.com/b/Bbp0qP

3. New Personal Homepage
http://bagtheweb.com/b/SK3rqF

4. Amazing Social Bagging Experience
http://bagtheweb.com/b/H0fUPP

We are working on more features to improve the core bagging capability. We will appreciate it if you could give us your feedback and advice. You can leave comments on the above bags.

The redesigned site and added features

After a few weeks’ hard coding work, today we are presenting an updated site to you. We hope the new features and changes will make the site more useful. Here is a brief description.

1. Now you can follow baggers (bag creators)
This way you may see the bags they create and recommend all the time. You also can build bags to share interesting topics with your followers. With this function, it is easier to keep track of baggers you like and the bags they build, update, and recommend.

2. Registered users can recommend bags
Consider this function as BagTheBag’s tweets. By clicking the “recommend” button, you can share any bag you see with your followers, no matter you are the bag’s creators or not. Even you do not create bags, you still can find and share good bags by recommending them.

3. Rich media content links
Bags will automatically display rich media content, such as video and photos, originated from certain sites. What you need to do is just like before: adding URLs to a bag. Then, the videos or photos will be embedded. See this example. Right now, this function supports YouTube, Vemeo, and Flickr. We will add more sites to the supported list soon.

4. Plus, the site recognizes tweets
When a URL of the Twitter site is entered into a bag, its corresponding tweet will be displayed in its entirety including the tweet text and the twitterer’s image.

5. Unpublished / published feature
Users told us that they do not want their bags to be instantly public when they are still creating them. For that reason, we added one step for bag creation. Now a bag is considered “unpublished” until its creator clicks the “Publish it” button. However, unlike private bags, an unpublished bag is not private, for it can be seen if one has the right URL. You can use this “semi-private” feature to share a bag with your group, if you do not want the bag become fully public.

6. Now you can save your favorite bags
By clicking the star icon on the sidebar, you “favorite” the bag you are viewing. The favorited bag can be found in a dedicated section.

7. Embed a bag to your blog or sites
We add an “embed” tool so that you can embed a bag to your blog or website. It is useful to add a bag of related web links as references to your blog posts.

8. Your personalized home
We changed our homepage, for both before signed in and after signed in cases. After signed in, your personalized home is named “bagstream” that displays all bag items published and recommended by baggers you follow. It is an easy way to discovery interesting bags you may never encounter. Bagstream is a bag filter contributed by people you follow. You can control the flow by following and unfollowing them.

In the past few months since our site went online, some users recommended BagTheWeb as a good bookmarking tool. That was half right. BagTheWeb can help you collect and organize websites and pages. However, it does more than that. Essentially, BagTheWeb is a Web content curation tool. Users can create bags of different topics. With the Web’s information overloading situation, the need of content curation is becoming more imminent everyday. In a recent post, Robert Scoble extensively described the need and design for such a tool. You can read it here.

With the added social networking component, the BagTheWeb site will be able to connect both bags and users. The site will become a social “content network” of Web information. We are eager to hear your comments and suggestions so that we will make further improvements along the way.