To maximize online reading, I use several services to find great articles, to stay organized, to save articles for later reading, and to annotate while reading online. I’ll briefly explain the services I use below.
Zite– This is my new favorite! Zite allows users to create a personalized online magazine. After creating an account, users enter their interests and Zite combs the internet for blog posts and articles matching those interests. My Zite interests include blended learning, BYOD, classroom, classroom 2.0, Evernote, leadership, personal development, principal, teachers as technology trailblazers, and 12 other keywords. When I read an article, I can favorite it, share it, and I can also subscribe to other keywords.
Instapaper– Instapaper is how I save articles to read later. When I see a post on Twitter, Facebook, or anywhere else, I save it to Instapaper (using the toolbar extension). When I have time to read, I open Instapaper and have a list of posts I saved for later reading. I’ve used Instapaper for a while now and I love it!
Delicious– Delicious is new for me. It’s a lot like Instapaper but has some great social media functions built in. In addition to saving articles to read later, other users can subscribe to my Delicious channel and I can subscribe to other users. This is a great way to let others find the good stuff! Click here to check out my Delicious page.
IFTTT– If This, Then That is a pretty awesome service that finds resources for me and sends them my way based on a recipe I set up. For example, one of my recipes is “If I like a Twitter post, then send the post to my Delicious account.” So as I’m going through Twitter and come across something I really like, I’ll favorite it and the link is saved in Delicious. There are so many pre-made recipes on IFTTT that I just have gone through and picked the ones that might work for me. There are several that work with Evernote that are really helpful!
Clearly– I use the Evernote Clearly toolbar extension when I’m reading an article or blog post online because it clears out everything except for the text (no more ads, side links, flashing pop-ups, etc.) and it allows me to annotate directly on the article. Clearly links to my Evernote account, so when I highlight or make a note, the article and my annotations are automatically sent to my “Articles” notebook in Evernote. Click here to read more about how I use Evernote Clearly.
Lightly– This one is brand new for me, but I’ve already found it very beneficial when I’m reading on my iPhone or iPad. This app allows me to highlight key ideas while reading, and then the article is clipped (saved) directly to my “Articles” notebook in Evernote.
With so many articles and resources out there, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed, but these systems have really helped me manage my online reading. If you’re not already using a service similar to one of these, I suggest you give one of them a try.
If you are already using a service to manage your online reading, I’d love for you to post a suggestion below. I’m always looking for something new to try out.