Google Notebook

Google Notebook launched this week as the latest Google Labs project. Labs is basically what Google describes as a "playground" for "ideas that are not quite ready for prime time." I've been playing with Notebook for a couple of days, and while it's already a handy little tool in its current form, I can see why it's been launched as a Labs project - I'm sure they're still busy cooking up stuff to take it one step ahead of other similar services out there.

Notebook, as the name suggest, gives you a centralized scrapbook where you can aggregate bits and pieces of information from various different sources. Let's say you had to write a paper on a particular topic. You could create a notebook to save clippings as you do your research on the web, for example. If you were collaborating with a group of people, you could even share your notebook with them. It works by installing an add-on for Firefox or IE, so browser integration is great, and saving clips is simple. Since your notebooks are tied to your Google account, you can also access them anywhere you go.

So what could the Googlers have in store for us that made them release this initial version as a Labs project? Garrett Rogers discovered some tidbits in the code, and Marc Orchant briefly describes what could be coming in the future. As a Blogger user, the second possibility is most interesting to me. Here's why - as I skim through my RSS feeds in NewsGator Online daily, I save pieces of news and articles to my "Clippings" folder if I think I might want to blog about them. Now imagine if I could save interesting clips of info from various different sources (not just my RSS feeds) in a notebook that seamlessly integrated with Blogger. I bet that would make things a whole lot simpler!