Use Diigo for Bookmarking and Organizing Online Research

Diigo is a social bookmarking site that I use for auto-blogging, but it was launched as a tool to organize online research.

For the past few weeks, I’ve been posting semi-daily “resource roundup” articles here on the blog. These posts sprung from my news article-surfing and Twitter network, but I got the idea to test out using Diigo as an automated blogging tool from a post over at Free Technology for Teachers, which in turn got material from Cool Cat Teacher.

As cool as that functionality is, Diigo’s research roots means there’s a lot more possibility for usefulness, especially for educators and learners. From the site:

Pronounced as Dee’go, it is an abbreviation for “Digest of Internet Information, Groups and Other stuff.” You see, we especially like the “Other stuff” part, which gives us an open mandate to relentlessly innovate and provide better and better value to our users.

Its annotation features allow users to save webpages (research for that tricky term paper, for example) with the users’ own highlights and notes saved as well. As icing on that web-app cake, the sites saved in your Diigo library are searchable, too. This means that I can save all my research, organize those saved sites under a list, include tags under lists and create a nice little organization hierarchy of bookmarks.  Your site titles, URLs and personal annotations are all searchable, which helps you quickly find stuff later.

Diigo is saving a point-in-time cache of the bookmarked site. This means that, when you retrieve the link through your Diigo library, you’re seeing it as it was saved, not as it exists now (if the content on the URL has changed). That’s not a feature of all bookmarking tools, but it has a lot of benefit for educational/research use.

Watch this tutorial from diigobuzz for a complete how-to on Diigo’s many uses.

Its collaboration tools allow for invite-only or group link-sharing, which would be great for classroom use. (They call groups knowledge repositories.)

A related bookmarking tool, I’ve been a big fan of Pocket for a long time (like more than a year! that’s forever in Internet Time) for its unobtrusive browser extension and clean-looking, durable iPhone app. But I use Pocket only for transferring things to read from my browser to my mobile device. It got a major functionality upgrade at the end of last year and now includes better tagging and the ability to playback videos. Still, I like Diigo’s education-focused approach and find myself using it for research-y uses and Pocket for reading for pleasure. I’m happy with this different tools for different goals approach. The core concept of Diigo, Pocket and a whole host of other bookmarking applications is the same (I think of Diigo as being the simpler, web-based and free approach to Evernote), but whatever tool sharpens your personal saw, as it were.

To get started with Diigo, sign up for a free account and then pick your desired bookmarking method; you can save with a bookmarklet (button in your bookmarks bar), a browser add-on or even save-by-email or save-by-Tweet. You can then access your library via your mobile or desktop browser or through an app.

Free & Cool Tools for Note-Taking & Saving Stuff

Diigo: Available as a browser extension and bookmarklet for Chrome, Firefox, IE; app available for iOS (iPad or iPhone) and Android

Pocket: Available as browser extension for Chrome; app available for iPad, iPhone and Android

Featured image from How Can I Find It.


Alex is online course support technician at IDS, working to support all online, hybrid and LMS-enhanced instructors and students in using Blackboard and several media servers. She's also the administrator for the MCC Blogs network. You can reach her at

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Posted in Blog, Free & Cool, IDS Tech Academy
2 comments on “Use Diigo for Bookmarking and Organizing Online Research
  1. […] Extra bonus tip: Once you’ve completed a lot of research (be it for a Serious Term paper or for recipes to try), you’ll likely want to save all the info you gather. For quick saving, I like the free & cool tool Diigo. […]

  2. […] Extra bonus tip: Once you’ve completed a lot of research (be it for a Serious Term paper or for recipes to try), you’ll likely want to save all the info you gather. For quick saving, I like the free & cool tool Diigo. […]

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