I cannot keep my digital life organized. And since my digital life is pretty much my real life, that becomes a problem. My recipes are in one place, blog posts to read in another, to-watch-play-read in their own pockets, and so on. It’s ridiculous. I’ve tried a ton of services and some of them work really well, like ZipList for recipes. But having them on their own like that means I tend to forget about them. Others, like Pinterest, are fun but I can never find anything when I need it.
Enter Springpad. Springpad reminds me of an interesting mash-up of Evernote and Pinterest. You get the visual and web-based features of Pinterest, with the organization features of Evernote. You create notebooks and then add “springs” to those notebooks. Think Pinterest here, it feels like pinning things to a board. When you add springs though, you get more robust features. This is where the Evernote like functionality comes in. You can say what kind of link you have (product, recipe, movie, etc) and add tags to it.
Because you have tags and types, you can actually find what you’re looking for after you’ve added it. So if you know you had a drink recipe from a while back you don’t have to scroll through pages of posts to find it. You can just click on your tag. If you’re bad at tagging (like I can be) you can also search a specific notebook to see find what you’re looking for.
Springpad is also social. You can push springs to Facebook and twitter, and Springpad is trying to grown its own community. It doesn’t have to be social though, because you can have everything private if you want (unlike Pinterest where you’re limited to three private boards). But more importantly you can collaborate. Claire and I have a notebook full of stuff just for Pure Geekery. Story ideas, conventions we want to go to, products to review, things we need to get done. It’s all there.
There are some improvements that need to be made to Springpad. The iPad app wasn’t super intuitive to me, for example. And it’d be nice if I could set the site to open on my notebooks by default instead of my springs. I’d like an alert when someone adds to a notebook (for if Claire adds something I should see) but the only way to do that now is with RSS. But overall the functionality is solid.
If you’re still looking for a good way to keep all of your digital stuff organized, Springpad is definitely worth a try. I’m in the process of moving my stuff over there now and once I do it’ll be my primary organization location.
Springpad is available on iOS, Android, and Kindle. It runs in the browser, and has extensions for additional functionality for Chrome and Firefox.