Browser bookmarks haven’t seem to have migrated since then, well, because bookmarks have become a thing in browsers. A large part of the reason so many browser tabs open is because bookmarks are an ineffective way of storing things we want to reference online.

Then the other day, I came across something that gave Bookmarks the performance and usability I had been waiting for all these years.

Enter BrainTool.

It should read: How to safely erase hard drives (HDDs) and solid state drives (SSDs)

BrainTool is a Google Chrome plugin that combines bookmarks and note taking and adds a set of tags to give you a new experience of storing web links for future reference.

At the core of the tool is a side panel that is basically a nested list of tags, and under each of them are links that you choose to save, along with some text. The side panel lets you move, edit, open, and delete entries, and it also lets you create a repository of places you quickly visit – and want to visit again – on the web.

All data is stored in Google Drive (a Google account is required), and the data is not sent anywhere else.

All this is between you and Google Drive.

The file, which is stored in plain text in Google Drive, can be edited, backed up or shared independently if you like. This is a nice touch. In an age when everything depends on third-party servers, it is a good idea that this project chooses to keep everything as part of your Google account.

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I have to be honest, for a project that looks new (version 0.5.1 has version number attached), that’s really cool. As with anything, it takes some getting used to (partly because we’re so used to opening a lot of tabs and asking why everything feels so slow), but it’s pretty cool, and so modern, that takes bookmarks. There are also videos that walk you through BrainTool, and I recommend watching them because it’s faster to learn this way than to play around with it (like I did).

I really like BrainTool. The simple interface may not be for everyone, but behind this simplicity there is a lot of power.