Read-It-Later Services and Archiving - Help
June 28, 2014 9:59 PM   Subscribe

I have about 1500 articles "archived" on Instapaper. I thought it always retrieved the local cached copy from my app or Instapaper. However, whenever there is an internet connection on my iPad, it will attempt to get the article from the original URL and if it's not there, tell me it's not available. >>>details inside

However, if I shut-off WiFi, Instapaper will show me the "local" copy on the iPad. When using the web interface of Instapaper you have no access to a cached copy at all. At if you click on an article it "parses" the article from the original URL each and every time.

I found all of this out the hard way. I took my laptop to a group to show an article I had archived on Instapaper. Well, with the web interface of Instapaper you are out of luck if the original URL is gone. I was embarrassed and that was that. So, "archived" (if it's an article that is no longer at the original URL) depends on using the app only with WiFi OFF. Forget it with the web UI at Instapaper. This seems all too convoluted to me and I may be ready to switch read-it-later services.

What service is available that will allow me to always have access to the article I have "archived" - no matter what? In other words, one that is parsed into easy-to-read format and cached at the service site - even if the URL no longer exists for the original article.

Confusing, I know. But the Instapaper response to my problem was way more confusing. It makes no sense. If the original article is gone from a blog or whatever, I still want to know my article is saved and I can retrieve it any way I want to. By the way, I am a "subscriber" to Instapaper ($12 a year) and thought surely I was covered. Not so. That's just the way it is.

What service will give me what I need? Thoughts? Ideas? As always, in advance, thank you!

posted by Gerard Sorme to Computers & Internet (3 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
If you sign up for Pinboard, for around $10 (one-time fee), then subscribe to its archiving service ($25 yearly, the first year you only pay the difference between your sign-up fee and the $25), it'll download and store copies of everything you bookmark. You can automatically hook it up to bookmark stuff you save to Instapaper, so you don't even have to change your workflow.

These archived copies, I believe, would be copies of the original page (not the clean Instapaper version), but you could probably use the Instapaper Text bookmarklet to convert it into the clean version.
posted by brentajones at 10:17 PM on June 28, 2014 [3 favorites]

Pocket Premium does what you want:
posted by woodman at 10:46 PM on June 28, 2014

I use Evernote for this. I have the premium version but I don't believe you need it for web clippings (just to archive PDFs). There is a chrome extension, which I click and it will archive the whole page or just your selection and save it to whatever notebook. It is available on their server so it's always available even if the website itself goes away. It does also save the URL in case you want to see the live website, but what it saves is a copy of whatever you saw when you clipped it.

On my computer, I have the actual Evernote software, which syncs with the server and keeps a local cached copy so I can access everything even if I'm not online. There are also apps for all the different mobile devices and yes, you can tell them to sync with the server. But I think the search function might use internet connection...? I'm not sure, but anyway, there is definitely an archived copy on their server.

If you want the "minimalist" archived feel for articles, you can also use the "Evernote Clearly" extension. I don't always want it because it gets rid of the pictures and a lot of the things I save are about pictures or instructional or otherwise helpful with pictures.

(Caveat: Very occasionally, some sites need sign-ins, and Evernote has saved them weirdly, so I always check the thumbnail after it clips a site. It's happened about 3 times in the last 3 years I've used it, so I'm not too worried.)
posted by ethidda at 2:59 PM on June 30, 2014

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