Pieces: A Bookmarking Tool for Developersby@anushka23g
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Pieces: A Bookmarking Tool for Developers

by AnushkaMay 16th, 2022
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Saving code solutions by using bookmarks in your browser is pretty painful when you want to find and revisit that solution later. An easy hack is to save snippets through the Pieces tool, which automatically attaches the source URL from where you grabbed the snippet. You can not only find the snippet easily later, but you can hop out to the page it came from to remind yourself about the broader context.

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I’m sure most of you search Google to find solutions for errors, from how to sort a list to a breadth-first binary tree traversal to how to establish a database connection.

And chances are you’re bookmarking a solution from some StackOverflow page, thinking it’s saved for the future.

But revisiting that solution in your bookmarks folder is suboptimal for a bunch of reasons:

  • Unstructured bookmark lists are hard to search, and you’ve no idea where to start looking for the solution.
  • If you’re OCD, maybe you spend a bunch of time organizing your bookmarks, but most of us don’t have time for that.
  • A bookmark provides minimal information unless you click through each link
  • Bookmarks save no context for your problem, which is often how you might want to search

Fear not — let’s look at a simple hack using the free Pieces tool that is much more effective at managing your saved links and solutions.

A much more effective way to save URLs and solutions

You might know Pieces as a snippet tool where you can save code and easily find it and reuse or reference it later. But one of the more interesting ways I use Pieces is through their Chrome plugin — which enables me to save code from any webpage in as little as a click.

The latest version of Pieces, though, added a killer new feature called Related Links that makes it far more useful as a home for your URLs. When you save a snippet from a web page using their plugin, Pieces automatically saves the URL of the page the snippet came from.

So when you need that snippet, you can search in Pieces using an exact or fuzzy match based on the snippet or the language, but you’ll also find a link to the URL that you originally got the snippet from, and THAT is incredibly helpful to refresh on the context around the snippet.

Saving a snippet from StackOverflow in Pieces with tags, description and Source URL

Let’s look at some examples in the wild…

Finding Shell Commands If you’ve ever tried bookmarking your shell commands, you know it’s much easier to just search for them again than to find them in your bookmarks list.

Here’s how you can find your shell commands quickly with Pieces.

Finding Shell Commands without Pieces:

  • Opening your bookmarks

  • Trying to remember what the page was

  • Scrolling through an endless list to search

  • Finally finding the link and navigating it

Finding Shell Commands with Pieces:

  • Searching for the saved snippet
  • Navigating to its related links

Saving Git Commands

Git commands are super handy. Maybe you’ve tried bookmarking commands to merge your local branch, fetch, rebase, and resolve conflicts for your ease, but forgot your way back.

If you’d saved those commands in Pieces, you can get right back to your page in no time using the Related Links feature.

Frontend Development

While working with CSS, you might get confused about when to use an inline, block or inline-block display for controlling the layout of an element. Scrolling through a never-ending list of bookmarks to find their correct usage on W3Schools is a nightmare, isn’t it? Rather, you can simply save it to Pieces and jump to the relevant pages to understand their use cases, directly from your snippets, find the right one and use them in no time.

Along with saving the links to pages, it also helps you save specific information about them. So if you’ve some code that you feel like revisiting, rather than bookmarking the page, try saving it with Pieces next time and you’ll save a lot more time looking for it later. It helps save all your important information organized, easily accessible, and get a ton of other amazing benefits to supercharge your developer workflow.

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