“ Tinyurl.com turns URLs in tiny URLs. Are you sick of posting URLs in emails only to have it break when sent causing the recipient to have to cut and paste it back together? TinyURL.com creates tiny URLs that will not break in email postings and never expires. „
For those of you who have never used this website and have no idea what it's all about, it's probably best described as a tool to make a long URL much shorter so that it takes up less characters and space.
Just to give an example of why you might want to use the site, I'll fill you in on why I've used it in the past. Now much neglected, I used to have a blog that I marketed on Twitter by putting the URLs of newly posted content in my tweets. As most of you will know, Twitter only allows 140 characters in each tweet and as the URLs for my posts weren't all that short, I was finding it difficult to fit the URL and a short blurb informing followers that a new post had been uploaded into the character limit. Fortunately, this very website could help me out in that respect.
The basic idea is this: in a prominent position on the homepage, you'll see a box that says 'Enter a long URL to make tiny'. All you have to do is copy and paste your URL and click the 'Create URL' button to the side of this box and it will give you a http://www.tinyurl.com/ URL followed by a seemingly random jumble of letters and numbers after the slash. Generally speaking, the character length of the new URL will be around 30 characters or less, which is much better if you're limited on space and characters (as I was on Twitter). It literally takes a minute or less to get the new URL so it's very quick and simple to do.
Although I don't use it for this purpose myself, I have known people to hide affiliate links using this site as the new URL won't give away any information about the site that visitors will be clicking on, so you won't be able to tell if it's an affiliate link (or indeed, what kind of link it is at all in most cases) until it's actually been clicked on and loaded.
URL`s are what you use to get around the web unless you are using a search engine. URL`s can be very long and sometimes you need to shorten them or you may even want to disguise them.
Here is a link to a post on my blog. As you can see it is quite long.
Now lets say I wanted to put this on twitter - it would be too long or I wanted to email it to someone -it is a bit of a nuisance this long even if you copy and paste it! Even to put it on Dooyoo I have had to separate many times due to the maximum world length of 80 characters!
Now you can shorten it very easily using Tinyurl. You type the URL into the box and either click make tinyurl or you can give it a custom name which is a pretty nice feature. Now I have made it into http://tinyurl.com/canonixusreview which suits the URL. This is much shorter and can be used in emails and social networking sites.
You could even use this feature to hide affiliate and referral links and just get it to say join - instead of ---refmember--- e.t.c
The site does not have the best design and is a little messy but it is easy to use and has some nice features so makes up for it. Apparently there are other sites like this and I will try them out and write a review of them and compare them!
Overall this is a pretty useful site that shortens URL`s and could be very useful but it does not have a bit of a bad design!
TinyURL is a website which facilitates the conversion of long hyperlinks into shorter hyperlinks. First launched in 2002, it has since grown in popularity and acceptance with the explosion of character restricted social networking and other web media.
I have been a TinyURL user for some time. I have found the service to be almost necessary when attempting to send links to friends in a confined area such as my MSN Messenger identity or Twitter update. When trying to show a map to a friend, for example, this often results in a long and cumbersome Internet address; Google Maps often have links which are at or exceed 80 characters. This proves troublesome when attempting to send this information through a micro blog or social networking service such as Twitter as I'm only left with a short amount of space to suggest what the map is meant to display. To counter this, TinyURL shortens these extensive links into much more manageable and character friendly addresses. What was once an 80 character missive often becomes a much shorter 26 or below character hyperlink which will redirect to the original, longer address. It goes without saying that this provides infinite usefulness as I'm left with a greater abundance of characters to submit a message alongside the link itself.
TinyURL provides the user with a simple and highly accessible interface. When first logging on to TinyURL.com, the user will be met with a prompt in the centre of the page which is headed by "Enter a long URL to make tiny". From here users enter their longer link and click "Make TinyURL" to create a new redirection link. This new link will then be displayed and becomes immediately active after its creation. TinyURL claims that created links through their service will never expire and so far I have found this to be true. I have had several links active for six months and beyond, and none of these have had any issue forwarding to the original link and content.
I find little to complain about when considering the service TinyURL provides. The interface could perhaps be described as bland and somewhat generic, but the service itself is fully functional and very useful. I would have no problem recommending TinyURL to those seeking to reduce the character strain a longer hyperlink may put on certain services.
TinyURL is a website that creates smaller, easier-to-remember URLs (or website addresses to the uninitiated).
It takes a URL such as:
and shortens it to a much smaller address:
This shortens the address from 86 characters to 26 characters. And now means that by typing in the shorter address, you'll be directed to the original one.
Okay... but why do we need shorter URLs? Well shorter URLs are useful for when you've only got a limited amount of space. 2 places I see them commonly used are in magazines and on Twitter. The shorter URLs also remove the problem of what to do if the URL won't all fit onto one line, as the problem of line breaks won't rear its ugly head.
So, apart from making a URL shorter, what can you do on tinyurl.com? Well, nothing. Other URL shorteners (such as bit.ly) also keep stats on how many people have visited your link - something that TinyURL does not.
Another negative is that the TinyURL website is hardly a thing of beauty - it looks like it's been designed by a blind chimp with one hand tied behind his back. I've seen vomit more appealing than tinyurl.com!
I use Twitter a lot (twitter.com/robclarkson), and with the limited amount of space available, URL shorteners are an invaluable tool. However, for me the biggest problem with TinyURL is also the most ironic - the basic web address is too long!
http://tinyurl.com/ is 19 characters to start with, whereas competitors such as http://bit.ly/ is 14 characters and http://ow.ly is only 13. Both of these sites also benefit from a much, much, much nicer design too!
Overall, TinyURL is a good service and a great idea, but in my opinion it's been bettered by the nicer-designed and more feature-packed opposition in bit.ly and ow.ly.
One of the places where I dispose of my unwanted nick-nacks is on Freecycle. Although most of it of little value to me I do like to give the potential "rescuer" at least an idea of what the item looks like so there can be no complaint that it wasn't what was expected. So, I post a photo on the Freecycle group photo page and include a link to it in my message.
Or, I did. Recently I posted an item and then went to the picture on Yahoo to copy the URL link for my message. I don't know what Yahoo has been doing but whereas previously the address was a manageable size, filling only about a third of the address box, now it disappeared off the end. Inserting it in a message would have taken up most of the message!
This doesn't seem to be just a problem with Yahoo. As more and more URLs are automatically generated by the web server software hosting the website, they seem to be getting longer and longer and more and more incomprehensible. Trying to copy them creates problems like not copying all of the address, the address being split across lines in your message and so on. All of these problems inevitably result in the address you have so thoughtfully provided being worse than useless.
Which is where TinyURL comes in.
Tiny URL is a website, a very simple website. It pretty much consists of a single page. The important bit is right in front of you when you visit. It's a grey window with a data entry box and the message "Enter a long URL to make tiny:". And that's exactly what you do. Copy the original address, remembering to make absolutely sure that you copy every single character, and then paste it in the box below the message. Then just click the "Make TinyURL!" button and in response you will get a very much smaller address in the form: http://tinyurl.com/nnnnnn where nnnnnn is a random set of numbers and letters. This is the substitute address you use in your message.
How does it work? Well, TinyURL maintains a database on it's website of the cross-reference of the true address you originally entered, to the substitute address it generated for you. So, when someone clicks on the TinyURL address, they are referred to the real address via the TinyURL website. This all takes place in the background, with out the user really being aware that this is what is happening.
The TinyURL database must be huge because they state at the top of their webpage that they get around 1 ½ Billion hits a month. Now, even if this is, as I suspect, an American Billion (really only one thousand million rather than the "real" Billion, the British Billion - one million million) that's still a hell of a lot of data. And they keep it "forever ", so the database is only going to grow.
So simple and even better than that, it's free! But, if cutting and pasting to make a TinyURL seems like a pain then there is an even better solution, if you are a Firefox user as I am. The ever helpful Firefox community has come up with a Firefox add-on that makes the job even easier. Go to the Tools > Add-ons and then click Get Add-ons. That will take you to the Firefox website where you can search for TinyURL Creator. When it's displayed, click Add to Firefox. Restart Firefox and you're ready to check out this new gizmo.
When you find a page whose address you want to copy, all you need to do is right-click anywhere on the page and in the pop-up context menu there will be an entry for "Create TinyURL for this page". It couldn't be simpler. You will then find that the gizmo has done all the work for you in the background. You get a little window up showing the generated TinyURL address and helpfully telling you that it has already been copied to the clipboard for you so you simply need to paste it where you want it. You can also save the address within the gizmo and "go to".
There may be a similar facility for MS IE. That I wouldn't know as I don't use it. If you do (Why????? Firefox is sooooooooo much better) then it may be worth your while researching.
TinyURL is a brilliant facility. How they make money out of it (if they do that is) I have no idea. Certainly they ask for donations but I don't know how many users do. I suppose there really isn't much cost involved with the site other than keeping the servers running. I doubt that they need to do much more development work. I can't see what else it would need!
Youre reading this on the Internet, so you must be connected. It therefore seems likely that youve experienced the following scenario:
Youve been clicking all over the Internet to find some information. Sending out e-mails to friends and strangers alike in hopes that youll get a reply. Then, finally one day, someone sends you an e-mail message with a link to some site that sounds like its exactly what youve been looking for. You move your cursor to the link and click. The browser opens up and lo and behold you see before you
The page cannot be displayed
And all because the URL you were sent, and clicked on was wrapped over more than one line. So now you have to go back to your e-mail message, find the bit thats missing from the URL, copy that and paste it into the address line of your browser.
Or worse yet, how about when you send a particularly long URL address to a friend? How many times have those friends written back to you that they couldnt open the page, even though you copied it directly from the site without changing anything? Lots, Im sure, and to resolve it, you end up writing a long description of what site it is, where to click and what to do to get to that page. Even then, your friend might never find what you were trying to show him.
And here on DooYoo! where the URLs in ops aren't clickable, well, those long strings of letters and numbers just slide all across the page and no one can copy and paste them into their browsers, now can they. And I've even gotten a message here once that DooYoo doesn't take "words" that are that long. Frustrating, isn't it?
Well actually its a bloody waste of time if you ask me, and annoying, as well! But you live with it, day in and day out because you think you have no choice. But that's because you havent learned about TinyURL.com. Well, ignorance isnt bliss and now is the time for me to educate you.
This has got to be the easiest thing there is to use. First of all, the site - just type in tinyurl.com in your browsers address line and hit enter. Youll find a simple blue & white page that touts things like Making long URLs postable. The whole idea is to take that long URL and make it into something short so you can send it to whomever you like. This site will do just that. Moreover, the new URL that they give you will never expire (even if the page you made it from does) and it will never get broken into pieces so that its unclickable.
The site will show you two ways to do this. The first is the most obvious. You copy the long URL from the address box of the page you want to send to someone, and then you come to this site, paste that into the box youll find right in the middle of the screen, and then click on the Make TinyURL button.
For instance, I checked Amazon.co.uk for the DVD of the movie Pirates of the Caribbean and got a very long URL, which DooYoo won't let me paste in here because its longer than 80 digits long. While I was there, I clicked on my link to tinyURL and that became: http://tinyurl.com/soaz
Isnt that cute? Furthermore, if youre using version 4 or higher of Internet Explorer, that little URL will automatically be pasted into your clipboard so you dont have to highlight and copy this address yourself, you can just go straight to the message or post that you want it in and paste it in. And what's more, these tiny URLs never expire so while I made that above URL in October 2003, it still takes me to the same place.
But you know what, if its a tad bit inconvenient for you to copy a long URL and then go to this web page and then paste it into the box and then hit the button, this site allows you to be even lazier than this. They have a Toolbar Button option, right there on the page. Just scroll down a bit on their page to the place that says Add TinyURL to your browsers toolbar and then do as youre told. That is, drag the link up to your toolbar and Bobs Your Uncle! The next time you want to copy a huge URL just click on the TinyURL button on your toolbar and the next thing you know, the address of the site you were at is quickly shrunken down to miniscule proportions (and, if youre browser is the right kind, the new URL is already in your clipboard).
Whats more, if you are into HTML and make lots of web pages with lots of long links, you can use this tool to shorten them for your code pages. If you do, you might want to put a link to TinyURL into your own web pages out of courtesy. And this site even makes that easy for you, by giving you the code to do just that. Arent they sweet? Hell, theyre absolutely adorable, the little darlings!
This is probably one of the most useful Internet tools Ive ever seen. And I bet youd be willing pay a few pounds a year for that service, wouldnt you? And I bet youre wondering how much this is going to cost you? Well, heres the really wonderful part - its TOTALLY FREE! Yes, finally someone has come up with something unbelievably useful that is practically essential and theyre not going to charge you even a penny for it. Pretty incredible, isnt it? But be not of despair, good friends - if you really like this tool, and are feeling generous, they do let you donate money to them, the sweethearts!
Bottom Line: there is absolutely nothing that anyone can say against this service - its totally perfect and deserves 10 stars, not just 5. So what are you waiting for? Go to http://tinyurl.com NOW and youll never have a broken URL, or a distorted review page again.
Thanks for reading!
Davida Chazan © October, 2003 for Ciao; updated February, 2006 for DooYoo
Sorry, there is no technical stuff this time - the only thing you need to know is their web page address which is http://tinyurl.com