Shorten Those Links!

Long, complicated URLs are both hard to type and can get mangled by email programs. These services take long URLs and create short versions pointing to the same page -- for free.

Last October, I wrote about MakeAShorterLink, a service that takes a long URL and outputs a very short one that's easy to email, include in newsletters, or add to your own bookmarks or favorites list. While this is an excellent service, there are two others that are worthy of your attention.

Like MakeAShorterLink, SnipURL allows you to "snip" your long URLs into small, compact links for sharing and remembering. The cool thing about SnipURL is that they offer a free button that you can drag onto your browser that snips URLs with a click, rather than having to copy the URL, visit the site, and paste the URL into a form.

SnipURL also creates a list of all shortened URLs you've ever made, making them available for easy access in your "my snipURL" folder.

TinyURL is another service that also lets you add a "link shortener" to your browser.

All three of these services offer an easy and free way to shorten URLs. I wouldn't recommend using them to create permanently archived links, as they are all apparently smallish companies and may be subject to the vissicitudes of business challenges. But for everyday use, they're very useful services indeed for eliminating those pesky, awkward long URLs.




Make a Shorter Link
SearchDay, Oct. 29, 2001 takes long URLs and outputs a very short one that's easy to email, include in newsletters, or add to your own bookmarks or favorites list.

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About the author

Chris Sherman is a frequent contributor to several information industry journals. He's written several books, including The McGraw-Hill CD ROM Handbook and The Invisible Web: Uncovering Information Sources Search Engines Can't See, co-authored with Gary Price. Chris has written about search and search engines since 1994, when he developed online searching tutorials for several clients. From 1998 to 2001, he was's Web Search Guide.