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Frequently Anticipated Questions
Who is LinkHugger for?
LinkHugger is ideal for two people, like a couple, or, a small group, like a family or a tight-knit bunch of friends who enjoy sharing links. It should also be useful for journalists or researchers who work together in teams. That's because LinkHugger is designed with intimate sharing and user trust in mind. By contrast grand-scale public sharing is best accomplished through the usual services like Google Bookmarks or Delicio.us, or, social media like Facebook and Twitter.
It's also the perfect personal scratch-pad or stick-note system for just you. It's ideal for those times when you might want to store links for later but don't want the hassle of categorizing or thinking too much about them just yet. LinkHugger is perfect in either scenario.
Here are the typical use case scenarios:
You can read the developer's story behind LinkHugger to get the most complete sense of why it exists. It is really his personal tool which he happens to share with the public.
Is LinkHugger just a way to share a link with someone?
No. Unless you're doing it wrong. It's actually a way to build and share entire link lists. You might start out with just one link, true, but the real value comes from the ability to collect many links (using the bookmarklet) while you surf, thus rendering them available to yourself or someone else later via a unique link hug code. LinkHugger assumes that you'll eventually delete the links or store them long-term on another service, but gives you a fast place to put them in the meantime.
How do I start a LinkHugger list?
There are two ways. And the second way is the one recommended.
First, on the LinkHugger main page enter data into the "Create or add to a list" box to add to an existing list. If the list as designated by your chosen hug code did not previously exist, the new entry will create one and be the first link in the list.
You provide a friendly name, URL, and then a "hug" code which you completely make up and is the code you or your special someone will use to retrieve your list later. The code should be somewhat complex and nonsensical like "fuzzywug3" to effectively eliminate the possibility of someone using your code. Your code should be considered a password as it is the only thing restricting other people from reviewing your shared link collection. It can only be 10 characters or less and only contain letters or numbers.
Once you click SUBMIT you should receive a confirmation page that will tell you that your link has been added and also offer to let you look at your shared collection right then and there.
Of course, a better way to do all of this is to install the LinkHugger bookmarklet. This tool sits in your browser toolbar and allows you to collect web links with a single click while you browse the web. Much better.
How do I retrieve a LinkHugger link list
At the LinkHugger main menu enter a known hug code into the box that reads "View an existing link list". You will be shown the associated link list instantly. You have this code because you either know someone who shared it with you, or you created it yourself. If you enter an unused code (as of this update) you receive an empty list.
Once you have accessed your link list you should consider bookmarking the page and storing it in your toolbar. This will give you one-click access to that list. If you are part of a couple or a small group of friends you can more easily bounce in every now and again and see who's shared what. You will notice there is an "auto-refresh" option on the link list. Clicking that takes you to a version of the page that refreshes every few minutes so that you can leave it open in a browser tab and look over occasionally to see what's up without clicking anything.
Can I sort and categorize links in my link list?
Nope. Investing in the time to do that is contrary to the core values of LinkHugger which is to remain the easiest way to store and recollect links between 2 people. The bottom line is that if anyone wants these things there are far more established and polished services out there like Delicio.us or Google Bookmarks. LinkHugger is an interpersonal sharing and retrieval tool that strives to remain thin and airy in use. It is assumed that the links shared will be discarded or otherwise moved on by the user to another longer-term storage system of choice later. LinkHugger is a way to keep links without having to think about processing them. Don't think of LinkHugger as a destination for links; think of it as one part of a link transit system.
How do I permanently delete links from a link list?
When viewing a link list click "Just Delete" for the link you want deleted forever. This would be the case when you and your partner or friends are all done musing over them. This approach does not visit the link first so be sure you really want it gone when using it.
Why do I keep getting sent back to the main page?
LinkHugger doesn't have a lot of user-friendly error messages built-in. If you enter information that doesn't validate, such as a password larger than 10 characters for example, you will simply be kicked back to the main page. Although more user friendly error behavior is being rolled out over time, most errors in LinkHugger today result in this behavior. So, if it happens to you review your previous action and data.
What's to stop some random stranger from accessing my link list?
Your unique "hug code". Of course you need to make this code as silly and cryptic as possible so that the chances of someone accessing your list on a guess or by accident is reduced. Consider this code word a sort of "password" and do not share it with anyone you do not trust or who might otherwise distribute it outside of your control. For example, a good hug code is "ukd32134". A bad one is "mycode".
Don't get too freaked out by the lack of stronger authenticated access. Keeping out the overhead of such things is what keeps LinkHugger light and airy, and in any event authenticated access really isn't needed. The links shared should already be publicly available on the web or lead to the proper gate keeping controls if they are sensitive. That being said, LinkHugger is to facilitate the sharing of cat videos, not state secretes. Use accordingly.
As well, inherently, LinkHugger codes in no way lead to identifiable clues about who generated them at a user level. If someone should stumble across your link list for any reason they will just see a bunch of random links.
With respect to anyone else, as is true with any online service, the administrator or designated administrators may encounter and view anyone's links at any time. However, aside from the general data accumulated in web logs and counters, these persons will have no exceptional or specific knowledge of you or other users.
Can I broadcast my hug codes to everyone on the web?
Sure but this really isn't advisable. While it would seem the greatest thing in the world to build a link collection and then give everyone on reddit the hug code, you have to remember that everyone will then have access to the controls that allow links to be permanently deleted. LinkHugger is designed for the intimate sharing of links. If you want to share with the entire world you're better off doing so through shared link features of major bookmarking sites like Delicio.us, or social media outlets like Facebook or Twitter.
Update 1/17/12 - LinkHugger has introduced public URLs. This feature allows a list owner to designate his link list as publicly available via a separate "public" URL which is published on the static link list page. To take advantage, simply click "On" where it says "Public URL Active". The public URL can then be copied and distributed. This feature is in beta and an entry on this FAQ will be made shortly.
Who built this?
LinkHugger.com was built and released by Dave the Web Guy in 2012. Like all DWG projects LinkHugger.com is non-profit dependent, not too complicated as web site applications go, and exists mainly to address a personal problem.
Thank you!. If you would like to donate to support my hobby of building useful web sites and LinkHugger.com in particular I've set up a PayPal process for that. Just click the button to get started:
Copyright, David Pinero © 2011