Use Annotary for efficient online research

Bookmarks only tell you where information you want is generally located. Highlighting can show you exactly where the information is so you can access it immediately. Combine both so you can research topics online more efficiently.

Annotary user account with saved highlights. Screenshot by Nicole Cozma/CNET

The Internet is a valuable tool in today's research for papers and other projects. However, bookmarking endless Web pages is not the most efficient way to keep track of the information you need. Sure, it points you to the source where you found useful information, but you still have to go digging through the Web page to find it again.

Instead of adding to your endless bookmark collection, you should try using a service like Annotary. This service is dedicated to helping you do online research more efficiently, and it's free for individual users. If you want to collaborate with others, others plans are available for purchase. (They also have special perks for educators, so don't forget to check those out.)

Screenshot by Nicole Cozma/CNET

Start by signing up for an account at Annotary.com. After sign-up is completed, if you're using Chrome or Firefox, you'll see the download page for the Annotary extension/add-on. After installing this, you can get started with your research.

Screenshot by Nicole Cozma/CNET

Head to a Web page that contains information you want to save. Then, click the Annotary button on your Web browser's toolbar. Press the Save Page button in the pop-up window that appears. Finally, start highlighting on the Web page and it will be saved to your Annotary account.

Highlighting a clip from a blog on Harvard Business Review. Screenshot by Nicole Cozma/CNET

After you highlight a string of text, a small text window will pop up, allowing you to add your own notes for the highlight. If you mistakenly highlight the wrong words, just mouse over them and a small trash icon will appear for you to click and delete the highlights.

When you're ready to take a look at all of the information you've collected, just click the Home icon on the Annotary toolbar (from the extension) and your account will load. What you'll see is similar to the image at the top of this post. 

Which tools do you use for online research? Share them in the comments!

 

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