Read Check out my year in Pocket! (Pocket App)

See how much I read in Pocket in 2019, including the most popular articles I saved and more.

Chris, you read a ton this year and made it into our top 5% of readers. That’s an impressive amount of knowledge gained.

You read 676K words in Pocket. Equal to 9 books.

Pocket badge that reads "Top Reader - Five Percent - 2019"

I bookmark a lot of things with Pocket, but I don’t feel like I use it a lot for reading. I’m surprised that I archived this many pieces.
Liked a tweet by Matt MaldreMatt Maldre (Twitter)
Read How to do PESOS from Pocket to Micropub by Jan-Lukas ElseJan-Lukas Else (jlelse.blog)
After thinking about it, I finally figured out how to PESOS from Pocket to my own site using IFTTT. The first step was to retrieve an IndieAuth access token using the tool Gimme a token. Then I created a IFTTT applet with the a new favorite item on Pocket as the trigger and a Webhook to execute. I f...
Following in Charlotte’s footsteps?
Replied to IFTTT Recipes for PESOS by Charlotte AllenCharlotte Allen (charlotteallen.info)
So, I spend a long time trying to set up PESOS for individual silos on IFTTT, specifically Facebook and Instagram, because they are terrible. I’ve got it currently set up to publish my initial post, but no back feed support yet. Also, this is going to wordpress, but it shouldn’t matter (in theor...
This is some brilliant work. Thanks for puzzling it all out.

I do have a few questions/clarifications though so as not to be confused since there are a few pieces you’ve left out.

For the IndieAuth token, which is created at /wp-admin/users.php?page=indieauth_user_token one only needs to give it a title and the “create” scope?

For the “then” portion that uses IFTTT.com’s Webhooks service are the following correct?

  • The URL is (when used with WordPress) of the form: https://example.com/wp-json/micropub/1.0/endpoint
  • The Method is: POST
  • The Content Type I’m guessing based on the Body field you’ve included is: application/x-www-form-urlencoded

For your Pocket example, it looks like you’re using the Post Kinds Plugin, so I’m guessing that you could have gotten away without the {{Excerpt}} and {{Title}} portions and just have sent the URL which Post Kinds picks up and parses to give you your context portion with a title and an excerpt anyway?

It looks like part of the trouble of this PESOS set up is that you’re too reliant in the long run of relying on Pocket (or other services) being around in the long term. If Pocket disappears, then really, so does most of your bookmark, which ideally should point to the canonical URL of the content you’re bookmarking. Of course perhaps IFTTT may not give you that URL in many cases. It looks to me like the URL you’re bookmarking would make a more appropriate syndication link URL.

For most of my bookmarks, likes, reads, etc. I use a plugin that scrapes my post and saves a copy of the contents of all the URLs on my page to the Internet Archive so that even in the event of a site death, a copy of the content is saved for me for a later date.

In any case, I do like this method if one can get it working. For some PESOS sources, I’ve used IFTTT before, though typically with RSS feeds if the silo provides them. Even then I’m often saving them directly to WordPress as drafts for later modification if the data that IFTTT is providing is less than ideal. Sometimes worse, using RSS doesn’t allow one to use Post Kinds URL field and parsing functionality the way your webhook method does.

Read PESOS for Pocket by Charlotte AllenCharlotte Allen (charlotteallen.info)
A few weeks ago, I made a post about how I got PESOS working for Facebook and Instagram using IFTTT. Now, I’ve gone ahead and done something similar with Pocket and IFTTT!
The code is similar to my linked post. As always, you’ll want to customize everything for your own needs, as well as add your own auth token.
A great way to leverage Micropub!
Read IFTTT Recipes for PESOS by Charlotte AllenCharlotte Allen (charlotteallen.info)
So, I spend a long time trying to set up PESOS for individual silos on IFTTT, specifically Facebook and Instagram, because they are terrible. I’ve got it currently set up to publish my initial post, but no back feed support yet. Also, this is going to wordpress, but it shouldn’t matter (in theor...
Read Outread Teaches Speed Reading with Pocket, Instapaper and Readability (Lifehacker)
iPhone: If you read a lot, it's probably a good idea to learn speed-reading. And the best way to learn is to go through your current backlog of things you want to read. So if you have a lot of articles saved in Pocket, Instapaper or Readability, you're in luck, because Outread will help you get through them and learn speed-reading in the process.
Read a post by Daniel Goldsmith (View from ASCRAEUS)

I wanted a simple self-hosted read-it-later service, something akin to Instapaper and Pocket, but without the overheads involved in running something like Wallabag.

Failing to find one, I wrote my own, and have just released it to the wilds.

It is very very simple, and uses Andres Rey’s php port of Mozilla’s Readability.js to grab pages for reading. There’s no interface to speak of, just a lightweight api with POST and a DELETE calls exposed. All files are saved as flat html, with a json index. No databases.

While writing it I’ve been prototyping it on my own site, and have been loving the experience. Its like the web, but the way it should be. If anyone else finds it useful, that’s a bonus.

👓 Chris Aldrich’s Year In Pocket

Read My Year in Pocket (Pocket App)
See how much I read in Pocket this year!
According to Pocket’s account I read 766,000 words or the equivalent of about 10 books. My most saved topics were current events, science, technology, health, and education.

The most popular things I apparently saved this year:

I’ll have to work at getting better to create my own end-of-year statistics since my own website has a better accounting of what I’ve actually read (it isn’t all public) and bookmarked. I do like that their service does some aggregate comparison of my data versus all the other user data (anonymized from my perspective).

Pocket also does a relatively good job of doing discovery of good things to read based on aggregate user data in terms of categories like “Best of” and “Popular”. They also give me weekly email updates of things I’ve bookmarked there as reminders to go back and read them, which I find a useful functionality which they haven’t over-gamified. Presently my own closest functionality to this is to be subscribed to the RSS feed of my own public bookmarks in a feed reader (which I find generally useful) as well as regularly checking on my private bookmarks on my websites’s back end (something as easy as clicking on a browser bookmark) and even looking at my “on this day” functionality to review over things from years past.

I’ll note that I currently rely more on Nuzzle for real-time discovery  on a daily basis however.

Greg McVerry might appreciate that they’re gamifying reading by presenting me with a badge.

As an aside while I’m thinking of it, it might be a cool thing if the IndieWeb wiki received webmentions, so that self-documentation I do on my own website automatically appeared on the appropriate linked pages either in a webmention section or perhaps the “See Also” section. If wikis did this generally, it would be a cool means of potentially building communities and fuelling discovery on the broader web. Imagine if adding to a wiki via Webmention were as easy as syndicating content to a site like IndieNews or IndieWeb.XYZ? It could also function as a useful method of archiving web content from original pages to places like the Internet Archive in a simple way, much like how I currently auto-archive my individual pages automatically on the day they’re published.

Home, 1837 N Harding Ave, Altadena, CA 91001, USA

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👓 How Firefox is using Pocket to try to build a better news feed than Facebook | The Verge

Read How Firefox is using Pocket to try to build a better news feed than Facebook by Casey Newton (The Verge)
Pocket CEO Nate Weiner on how local data processing is the future of personalized recommendations.
Nice to see people and companies iterating on new feed reader functionality–particularly ethical ones.
Replied to a tweet by Matt Reed (Twitter)
Wish Twitter would distinguish between "favorite" and "save for later." People could infer some pretty misleading things...
Intent on Twitter is often so muddled, this is the last thing some might worry about. (Yet it’s still a tremendous tool.) Pocket has browser extensions, and I know the one for Chrome has settings one can toggle an icon to appear on Twitter to allow bookmarking things to read for later directly within your Pocket account, which is generally a reasonable experience.

Pocket’s browser extension can add a much better “save to read for later” button to one’s Twitter feed.

I think the much stronger and better solution for one’s personal commonplace book is to simply add these intents to one’s own website and either favorite, bookmark, mark as read, repost, reply to, annotate, highlight, or just about “anything else” them there and syndicate the appropriate response to Twitter separately. (Examples: bookmarks and reads.) This makes it much more difficult to muddle the intent. It’ll also give you a much more highly searchable set of data that you can own on your own website.

Why wait around for Twitter or another social service to build the tools you want/need when it’s relatively easy to cobble them together for yourself on a variety of opensource platforms? While you’re at it, remove some of the other limitations like 280 characters as well…

According to Pocket, I’m still in their top 5% of their readers/users despite the fact that I cut way back on using it this past year in strong deference to using other feed readers including one built into my website.

Apparently I read 678, 617 words in their app this year which according to them is the equivalent of reading 14 books. To ballpark things I think I read 5 times as much in other apps. Now I don’t feel quite as bad about my poor Goodreads numbers.

👓 Building Digital Workflows by Aaron Davis

Read Building Digital Workflows by Aaron Davis (Read Write Respond)
Whether it is how we write or stay organised, technology is always adapting and evolving. Here are a few of the recent changes to my digital workflows.
An interesting philosophy of regularly changing workflows. I’ve done this for a long time, but never really given it a name.

There’s a nice tip about the Listen functionality in Pocket which I hadn’t yet heard about. I’m also curious how they’ve implemented highlighting and what I might do with it.

I suspect that if Aaron hasn’t come across Huffduffer as a tool yet (with a bookmarklet), he’ll appreciate it for both discovery as well as having his own audio feed to push to his mobile player.

Mozilla Acquires Pocket | The Mozilla Blog

Read Mozilla Acquires Pocket by Denelle Dixon-Thayer (The Mozilla Blog)
We are excited to announce that the Mozilla Corporation has completed the acquisition of Read It Later, Inc. the developers of Pocket.

Transitioning from Pocket to PressForward

I’ve recently been attempting to own all of my online bookmarks and online articles I’d like to read to replace services like Pocket and Instapaper. While I feel like I’m almost there using PressForward, there are still one or two rough edges.

One of them is creating a simple mobile workflow to take headlines from Twitter and get them into my reading queue. Previously I had used an IFTTT.com recipe to take things I “liked” in my Twitter stream to strip off URLs and put them into Pocket for reading later. In fact, very few of my thousands of likes in Twitter are traditional “likes” because I’m really using that functionality to indicate “I’d like to read the article linked to in this Tweet at a later date”. Somewhere in the past couple of months I’ve mused to at least one person on the PressForward team that it would be nice to have a simple indicator to send articles from Twitter to PressForward like this, but even if I were building it all by hand, this would be a bit further down the list of priorities. What to do in the erstwhile?

RSS has long been going out of fashion, particularly among the major social silos who want to keep you in their clutches, but it dawned on me to check to see if Pocket or Instapaper provide RSS feeds. Sure and gloriously enough, they do! In fact, Pocket has an unread feed, an archive feed, an all items feed (that includes both of the other two), and as a lovely additional touch, they’ve even got the ability to make feeds private. Instapaper has RSS feeds too, though they were a bit more hidden and took a right click/view source along with a manual completion of their base URL. The nice part is that one can take these RSS feeds and plug them straight into one’s PressForward RSS feed et voilà there they are on my own site! (From the viewpoint of PressForward, this is also very close to being able to nominate items directly from Twitter.) While this is more of a PESOS feed, the result is a no-brainer and provides a near real-time experience that’s more than adequate for my needs (at least until yet another silo goes down).

And as added bonuses, if I feel like using Pocket or Instapaper from time to time, I can do so without loss of data along the stream and the small handful of people with whom I interact on Pocket won’t notice the fact that I’ve disappeared.

For the millionth time, G-d bless RSS, a wonderful tool I use every single day.