James Mayes

Blog – How do you track the links you share on Twitter?

In Social Media, Twitter, Twitter Tips on March 15, 2011 at 8:06 pm

If you’re a regular Twitter user, one of the things you share will be links.  Either links to things you think are great, links to things that are professionally useful, or links that you think your followers will appreciate. Thing is, we all know Twitter’s search capability isn’t great. We also know that the archives aren’t fabulous. If you want proof of this, try and find that original tweet of the plane landing on the Hudson. You’ve probably all seen it, and it’s captured in countless other posts – but finding the original tweet just isn’t easy.

Packrati.usHelp is at hand.  This time, it comes in the form of a website which needs some love and a seriously smart Perl programmer. Enter Packratius. Currently listed as beta (which means it mostly works, but occasionally chucks you a curve ball), it’s a neat little tool with one function in life: connect what you tweet with Delicious.

For those not familiar with Delicious (you should recognise the blue & white icon), it’s a site which exists simply for you to log and save links to pages you like. It’s been around some time, was acquired by Yahoo for $18m and is now reputedly about to change hands again, this time for $5m (yeah, Yahoo have a habit of doing that…)

DeliciousThe trouble is, you’re not going to go and post a link to Delicious every time you tweet it. The good news is, Packrati.us will. Go to their page, sign in with Twitter. You’ll then be asked to connect your Delicious account (or create one), which takes seconds (free, of course).


Any links tweeted from that point on (provided you use http or https in the link form) will be automatically picked up by “the rat” and saved to your Delicious account. Next time you want to find that oh so useful article you shared last month, go search your Delicious history.

Had it switched on with my Twitter account for about a week now. Firstly, I’m actually amazed at how much stuff I actually share – and secondly, seeing it all there and searchable fills me with certainty that some point soon, it’s going to save me a half hour of searching for something I really need!

EDIT: In my joy of finding a Delicious plug-in, I managed to completely overlook the fact that Packrati.us will also support Historious, InstaPaper, Pinboard and Diigo. Having taken a quick look through those, I’ll be investigating Diigo next….

  1. Nice tip, thanks for that James! Also, i use instapaper and love it. I have it connected to my twitterrific account on the iphone and its great for saving those links you just dont have time to read or if you dont want to keep favouriting every tweet until you can catch up, which is what i was doing. Once on instapaper i can scan through them on the train, even if i dont have an internet connection. Lovely!

  2. Very interesting James thanks. Signed up this morning.

  3. Great tip and works beautifully. A big improvement on the tool I currently use which downloads to excel and is so ‘clunky’.Thanks!

  4. Damn handy! Thanks very much.

  5. @Gareth – thanks for the instapaper tip – hadn’t considered the offline element, very handy.

    @everyone else – thanks for taking the time to leave a comment – always good to have confirmation that the things I write are useful to people!

  6. The Delicious relaunch is coming. You’ll need to re-activate credentials with the new owner (AVOS) if you want to keep using the service – details here: http://packratius.posterous.com/wrecking-ball-coming-rats-still-in-the-buildi

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