Professional bookmarking

Today, a Nashville-based company, ConnectiveHealth, launched a professional bookmark organizing and sharing tool for physicians called “PeerClip.” Before leaving for San Francisco and the Health 2.0 conference where it was unveiled, ConnectiveHealth’s CEO (and my Nashvile/B2B publishing friend), Scott McQuigg, dropped by my office to demo PeerClip. As a bookmarking and conversational media junkie, I was immediately impressed with the functionality of the platform. More significantly, I was struck by how PeerClip uses features and approaches familiar to me (as a bookmarking fan) in a business-to-business, academic and professional context. (For an example of what I mean, check out the “Best of PeerClip” feed on the front of the site where the top link is to an article on the effect of homocysteine lowering on mortality and vascular disease in advanced chronic kidney disease and end-stage renal disease — not exactly the kind of item that bullet ups the Digg chart.)

Those who read this blog may know of my heavy use of bookmark-organizing and sharing services. Back in the early days of web browsing, I used my browser’s “bookmark” feature to store the URLs of web-pages I wanted to revisit. However, even with “folders” and mastering the art of organizing browser bookmarks, it became apparent to me several years ago that having bookmarks organized on the web was a much better approach, as it allows one to “share” with others what you discover. Since early 2005, I’ve used del.icio.us for such bookmark-sharing — on del.icio.us/rexblog, I’ve bookmarked nearly 1,400 articles and blog posts since January, 2005. At del.icio.us/smallbusiness, some others and I have bookmarked 4-5 posts and articles a day since May, 2005, and now have a collection of over 3,000 articles tagged in eight categories.

(For bookmarks I want to organize for personal reference, I use the Google application, Google Notebook. Also, I sync my browser bookmarks with my .Mac account as a backup.)

More recently, services like Stumbleupon.com have become, in essence, bookmark organizing services with a heavy focus on the “social networking” aspects of shared-bookmarks. By “sharing” bookmarks, some community wisdom emerges. While being perhaps the most simplistic form of knowledge-management imaginable, however, the mere act of saving a news=article can be of service to others — and serves as the foundation of such services as Digg.

As I’ve used these services, I’ve begun to wonder if they can also be applied in a professional or enterprise fashion — where the “wisdom” is limited to a “crowd” of individuals sharing the same employer or professional license. PeerClip — and I’m sure there are others in different fields — will answer that question.

Sidenote: It makes sense for such a service as PeerClip to be based in Nashville, the “Silicon Valley” of healthcare management companies. PeerClip’s parent company already provides an array of online services to hospitals and healthcare professionals nationwide.

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  • Steve NeSmith

    Very interesting!