Or, why we made another link sharing service
Today, we’re very proud to announce the newest (and smallest) addition to the Makeshift family: Linkydink — a link-sharing tool for startup teams. You can go straight to the signup page, or read about why we made it.
Why link sharing matters
As a team we have tried numerous ways to share links with one another. When I first started at Makeshift, our team of 5 shared interesting links by emailing everyone on the team email account. Then I'd privately save the links to my Pinboard account.
Diving into Gmail to find the links again was problematic. And once Makeshift grew to a 10-person team, we decided to use a better tool for link sharing. It was time to bring some order into this previously chaotic space! We all signed up for trial of Inc. as it seemed to have all the useful features: you could leave comments on links, have different groups for different kinds of links, and you could subscribe to a daily email digest of the links in case you missed one or two during the day. Inc has a great set of polished tools like a Mac OSX app, browser extensions, bookmarklets, and integration with HipChat.
Just the links!
Despite its beauty and polish, there were elements of Inc. we found incredibly frustrating. For example, when you receive the daily email all the links take you to the Inc page, instead to the actual link destination. If you, like me and the people on our team, like reading stuff on the go, then you will be faced with a login page instead of the article. If you use long passwords as we do, it becomes a whole song and dance routine just to read some words. I use Sparrow which opens web view within the app and doesn’t persist logins, so every day I had to repeat the whole scenario. It was a tedious process to say the least.
The ability to add comments to links on Inc is great, but it means that clicking on a link within a list takes you to a separate page where the discussion happens. It takes yet another click or tap to get to the link's destination.
Scratch your own itches
After complaining for weeks about those little things we decided to build our own tool (as we do here at Makeshift). A tool that would be stripped down, simple, and do just one thing, but do it well. We created Linkydink, a link-sharing tool built with these two principles in mind:
- Just give me the links.
- Don't make me visit the website to do anything.
When you subscribe or contribute to a group like Makeshift or cat gifs you will receive a single daily email with all the new links (no notifications!) and the links take you straight to the content (no page hijacking! no iframes!) instead of fetching content and re-rendering it on a branded page (I’m looking at you, Kippt).
You can add links through a Chrome extension, via email or on the website. You can view them on the site, retrieve them by email or subscribe to your group’s RSS feed.
More: private links, and an increase in inputs and outputs (i/o!)
And we’re not done yet: we’re still thinking about new and convenient ways of adding and receiving links so that it fits in with your workflow. Once you have an account you should never have to visit Linkydink again, unless you want to... Linkydink is a utility, not a destination.
If you use something every day...
So far Linkydink has proved useful and intuitive, and most importantly, we use it every day, which is a key measure of success for the things we make.
It has just enough flexibility to cater to the different ways people like to work at Makeshift but it’s simple enough not to get in our way. We have more ideas on how to make it useful, so please feel free to vote on what you’d like to see in Linkydink on our Roadmap on Trello.
So what are you waiting for? Start sharing links on Linkydink.