Multiple categories and other updates

The last few days have been spent on some good rearrangements. Most of them will not really show on the surface, but here are some of the changes you might have noticed:

  • It is now possible to put a spurled page in more than one category at once (press the “multiple” link in the Advanced spurling window).
  • I’ve been simplifying the setup process and putting more emphasis on that users also install the Spurl bar which seems to be a real hit with everybody that installs it.
  • The front page has been changed somewhat to try to better explain what is and does (only new/logged out users see that bit). As you know, Spurl is many things so all suggestions for a short and catching description of what is are welcomed!
  • The help and tips and tricks have been updated a bit, but there is more work to do there.


  1. Spurling a page, the multiple link took me by surprise, had to rush over and see if I’d beat the blog post 🙂 Very cool feature.

    Any chance of putting check boxes by the spurl’s and making it possible to move many at once? I’ve got about 1600 spurls that are uncategorized (from my import) that I’m trying to get sorted, and one at a time is killing me

  2. Allen: This will be made simpler. You are not the first to bash me for this 🙂

    I will most likely use the method you describe, but I’m looking into methods that could make it even easier.

    Estimated time of completion is next week.

  3. One feature would be great: The ability to edit previously saved links… especially the descriptions/comments.

    Also, what about subcatagories? If I save something under blogs/a and blogs/b, if i click blogs then the entries in a and b should also show up.. that would be a very nice feature.

    Spurl is looking great… is it going to remain free in the future?

  4. Been using spurl for only 10 minutes so far… but its brilliant! How can I modify the spurl bookmarklet so it goes directly into advanced? I usually add a description for each link, so I need to make a extra click. Also, how can I view the link comments in the sidebar?

    One extremely annoying feature of spurl is that for links already in the spurl database it ignores the comments I put in and displays whatever is stored in the database. Can i turn it off? I only want to see the comments which i add for each link, so its really annoying that the text i labriously enter in the comment field just disappears.

  5. The ability to edit previously saved links… especially the descriptions/comments.

    You can–open “My Spurls” in the spurl bar or go to “My Spurls” from the main spurl page ( — select a category. To the right of each spurl/link are a number of icons. The one that looks like a talk bubble gives you access to the comments/info you’ve entered, allowing you to edit it.

    Also, what about subcatagories?

    Yep, you’ve got subcategories too. If you select a category and enter text in the “new” field, that new category will be added as a subcategory of the selected cat. I’ve got some folders buried 3 or 4 levels deep.

    How can I modify the spurl bookmarklet so it goes directly into advanced?

    It -should- remember, and automatically open in the mode you last used. The only exception is that if you cancel/prematurely close it, it defaults back to basic. But, AFAIK, it should remember–it does on Moz/Firefox, any way.

    One extremely annoying feature of spurl is that for links already in the spurl database it ignores the comments I put in and displays whatever is stored in the database.

    Yes and no. The spurl has two comment areas–the top one, which is yours to edit again and again and the bottom one, which is the global/system description of the link. The bottom one is not editable once entered, but the top one (YOUR description) may be edited. The comments in the top field are most useful for searching–which is a driving force in spurl. Spurl EVERYTHING, and find it again later by running a quick search. A whole new spin on bookmarking.

    Can i turn it off?

    As far as I know, not presently.

  6. KO: Thanks for the kind words and your enthusiasm.

    Allen: Thanks for the great answersto KO’s questions. As I had already typed my answers I’ll post them anyway. They may add details in some places.

    Here are the answers:

    Subcategories: Subcategories are already supported. You create a subcategry by choosing a category in the drop down box (on the Advanced tab), and typing a name for the subcategory in the “(new)” input box behind it. You may have to reload the spurl bar to see the freshly created categories. There is a reload button at the top of the spurl bar to the right.

    Directly to advanced: The Spurl! window is supposed to remember your last choice. So if you used Advanced to Spurl the last entry, it should open on Advanced the next time around. If this is not working for you, please send me information about your browser type / version and operating system and I will have a look.

    Comments in the sidebar and editing information: This is probably not too intuative as it is now, but for more advanced features, I open that functionality in the main window (not the sidebar). To edit an entry or comment, click the (i)-document icon in front of the link. It will open your saved copy and information about the page, and you can change it by clicking the comment icon at the top.

    As for comments in the Sidebar, I’m trying to keep the sidebar interface as light and quick as possible and think that for one’s own spurls, seeing the comments was not necessary. The search option in the Spurl bar of course searches the comments as well. If you feel the comments are needed in the Spurl bar, please comment again.

    Description: I agree to your comment about the description, it is by no means ideal the way it is. It was supposed to be this way to give users some information about the site they’re spurling if there is any such information in the Spurl database, and the Comment was supposed to be the user’s personal note. The description is currently decided by the first person that bothers putting it in. Not ideal. I want the description to become some sort of a “consensus” from the people that have Spurled the page. So what I’ll do is probably to suggest a description but allow people to change it if they want. Gradually the description that has the most users submitting it will be seen as the “Consensus”. In the short term however this simply means that you will soon be able to edit the description, but Spurl will suggest a description if one exists. Sounds like a plan?

    And btw. as explained in a comment above, your comments are not lost. 🙂

    Free: In response to this, I added a section to the FAQ page on “Cost and Privacy”. The short answer is: YES – it is and will remain free.

  7. Wow, thanks for the detailed response. I’m really impressed with spurl.. it’s great! Once you get a ton of users though, won’t bandwidth/server costs be an issue? For me the main attraction of something like spurl or is the fact that my ‘bookmarks’ are always available anywhere – and also 10 years down the road.
    For example, here in Pakistan local isp’s go under all the time, and they’re hardly reliable in the first place, so services like gmail are a godsend, as they will be there for the long run.

    Is it possible to have a mini-installation of spurl on my server, as a backup? i.e that version only just connects to the spurl api at the spurl server and copies the bookmarks and cached copies.

    Subcategories: I imported my links into spurl – there I had subcatgories assigned as cat1/subcat1 cat1/subcat2. In spurl they show up as distict categories… It does seem to treat the backslash as a category sepeartor, as when I go to rename it only lets me change the part after the backslash.

  8. About donations, H–do you plan on supporting any non-pay pal means of donation? It’s a long story, but the short version is that I can’t use it presently (unless maybe I steal my wife’s account 🙂

    About the Spurl Bar being quick–as mentioned before, I can’t really use the my spurls part intuitively, as it takes OK’ing 3 or 4 JavaScript warnings (script takes too long to load) — would it solve my problem if the myspurls part of the spurl bar put all the uncategorized spurls in a UnCat folder/virtual folder rather than appending them all to the bottom of the list?

    (Times like these, I really wish I’d used a bookmark manager, previously, that used categorization rather than just searching a flat list)

  9. Allen:

    Donations:I’m not sure I want to hear the long version 🙂

    I’ve not planned other types of donation mechanisms for now – but I’ll look into it. Ideas?

    Spurl bar performance: Yes, I know. For users with thousands of spurls, this is a problem. It actually depends a bit on the speed of the computer in question, as big javascripts can put a lot of load on a machine.

    We are working on “real” solutions to this problem that will make the spurl bar equally light for everybody no matter how many spurls they’ve got. For now – in order to make the Spurl-bar usable for those that have a lot of spurls, we changed the functionality of “My spurls” so that it only shows the directory tree, not the pages themselves. To access the contents of a category: click the name of the folder.

    As I said before, this goes only for those of us that have a lot of spurls (the limit is actually 600). It’s not ideal, but works. I will post details when the “elegant” solution is ready.

    It will not matter if you move all the bottom spurls into a folder.

  10. My computer is fairly fast, but I dwarf the 600 spurl limit. The present solution, folders only, works much better for me. At least I can click the home button now without cringing, while I wait for the errors. I now have ready access to my folders, making the spurlbar all the more intuitive.

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