You are all aware of how cumbersome some URLs can be. Well, since the advent of Twitter, with its 140 character limit to tweets, the bit.ly URL shortener can be a boon. The results look meaningless, but sometimes it can be useful: especially in Tweets. Here is an example. The following is a link to the page about my novel called SANDMAN: http://www.iankingsley.com/books/sandman/ and its shortened version is http://bit.ly/goVmA8. Take a much longer URL like the following link to my Amazon.co.uk page: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Sandman-Ian-Kingsley/dp/1907756752/ref=pd_rhf_p_t_1 and the tiny version is only http://amzn.to/fDQZVA.
OK, they're not the easiest things to type, and they are case-sensitive, but they have their uses.