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is.gd Shortens URLs Your Way [groovyReview]

Groovy Internet Tools, Tricks, Tips, News, Tutorials, How-To, Questions, Community, and Answers

With the wave of Twitter and mass mobile messaging, the number of characters in a message has become valuable real estate.  So much so that many URL shortening web companies have appeared and taken on the job of saving you precious text characters.  Personally, my favorite URL shortener which I’ve been using for a long time is is.gd.

 

First off you might ask: What is a URL shortener? Or more specifically what is is.gd?

is.gd is a service that shortens URLs such as web addresses. This is useful in many circumstances (see below) e.g. in email clients that break long URLs.

For example, you can turn

“http://maps.google.co.uk/mapsf=q&hl=en&geocode=&q=louth&ie=UTF8&z=12&
iwloc=addr&om=1”

into :

“http://is.gd/1”

Our goal is to allow shortening URLs to the maximum extent technically possible.

 

URL shortening is nothing new; there are many contenders out there: tinyurl, bit.ly, su.pr, etc. Of course, they are all free, and with so many competitors it’s hard to figure out which one to use.  Below I’ll cover a quick (2 step) tutorial on how to use a URL shortening website, and then we’ll talk about the groovy personalization feature that makes is.gd unique.

 

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How To Shorten Your URL Using The Basic is.gd Website

 

1. In your internet browser, Visit is.gd and then Paste your URL into the text box and Click Compress That Address!

is.gd url shortener screenshot - enter your original URL

 

2. Your URL is now shortened!  Now all you need to do is Copy the short URL, in this example “http://is.gd/6EFIb” and then Paste it to wherever you needed a shorter URL.

is.gd url shortener screenshot - copy the new short url

 

Personalize Your Short URLS With is.gd

Other URL shortening services offer you the ability to reserve a static short URL.  This static URL is then permanently dedicated to the one site where you link it.

Example: http://bit.ly/groovyPost will always go to http://www.groovypost.com/ FOREVER.

The problem you encounter with this is that if someone took your URL, you’re short out of luck.  This scenario has caused many people to go to sites like bit.ly and start thinking of/reserving every possible short URL word they foresee needing.

With is.gd you don’t need to worry about reserving any URLs.  It simply gives you a very short number to begin with, and then you can add whatever you like to the end and change it quickly at any time.

For example:  at the end of your is.gd short URL simply add a “ / “ (forward slash) and then whatever additional text you want after that.

is.gd url shortener screenshot - customize all of your short urls to the same name if you want

Everything you type after the / is ignored by is.gd.  This format is useful if you’re looking to include your name or brand in the short URL.  Or you can have a brief description attached to the short URL.  You can make as many short URLs with the same “/name” as you want.  Overall it’s very groovy, and lately, the groovyPost team has been using it for all of our URL shortening needs.

 

Don’t like manually shortening your URL?  There is a Firefox plug-in for is.gd!  Check out the official list of third party support at http://is.gd/instructions.php.

Questions, Comments?  We’d love to hear about your “short” experiences in the comments below or in the groovyPost community!

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One Response to is.gd Shortens URLs Your Way [groovyReview]

  1. shockersh January 23, 2010 at 4:17 pm #

    is.gd is my fav. simple, easy and it works.

    You can also grab a bookmark off the is.gd page and use it to create short URL’s for pages your on also. That’s what I use for IE

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