Instapaper on IFTTT

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Today, we launched a brand new Instapaper Channel on IFTTT with new triggers and an enhanced Save Item action. Now you can set up Recipes that run every time you save an article, send to archive, move to a folder, like an article, or create a highlight! Additionally the “Save Item” action allows you to save directly to a folder, so you can easily organize articles saved from Instapaper Recipes.

Typically, using Instapaper with external tools requires a subscription, but IFTTT is so valuable to our users that we are waiving that requirement. Proper IFTTT integration is something that you’ve been asking for and, without further ado, here are some awesome recipes we’ve put together for you:

IFTTT Recipe: Save today's most dugg story to Instapaper connects digg to instapaper_full

IFTTT Recipe: Save any new, popular Technology article to Instapaper. connects the-new-york-times to instapaper_full

IFTTT Recipe: Send links from an Instapaper folder to a GroupMe group. connects instapaper_full to groupme

IFTTT Recipe: Send Instapaper likes to Buffer connects instapaper_full to buffer

IFTTT Recipe: Send a weekly digest of your Instapaper likes. connects instapaper_full to email-digest

IFTTT Recipe: Send Instapaper highlights to Evernote connects instapaper_full to evernote

You can view the full list of Recipes we’ve created here: https://ifttt.com/p/instapaper

As of today IFTTT and Instapaper have deprecated the old Instapaper Channel. If you have set up IFTTT Recipes using the old Instapaper Channel, you’ll have to replace those with Recipes for the new Channel. It’s a minor inconvenience, but the new triggers and ability to save directly to an Instapaper folder make the switch very worthwhile.

As always please let us know if you have any feedback in the comments, on Twitter @InstapaperHelp, or via email to support@help.instapaper.com

Thanks!

Instapaper Team

Save to Instapaper with Zapier

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We’re excited to share that Instapaper now integrates with Zapier, an app automation platform connecting over 300 apps. This means you now have even more options when saving articles to Instapaper, whether that’s automatically saving popular posts on Reddit or keeping better tabs on your favorite RSS feed.

Two noteworthy features of Zapier is its ability to automate multiple accounts of one app and to apply custom filters to your automation—for example, only add articles from The Next Web RSS feed if title contains “Microsoft” or “Windows”. And if you want to hook up more than one Twitter account to add even more favorited tweets to Instapaper, that can be done, too!

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Here are a few possibilities of Zapier’s Instapaper integration: 

To get started with Zapier, follow these steps:

  1. Sign up for a Zapier account;
  2. Connect your Instapaper account to Zapier (click here for a tutorial); and
  3. Check out a few of the pre-made Instapaper Zaps or start creating your own.

- Instapaper Team

Introducing Highlights

For the past few months we’ve been working hard on a feature a whole lot of you requested: highlights.  Today, we’re happy to announce that we’ve shipped text highlighting across all of our platforms — iOS, Android, and web!  Now you can just select some text and choose the “Highlight” option to save those great quotes you find while reading.

In true Instapaper fashion, your highlights are seamlessly synced across all of your devices. We’ve also added the option for you to post automatically your highlights to your linked accounts.  It’s disabled by default, but if you turn it on, you can do nifty things like automatically Tweet your highlights, or post them to a Tumblr blog, or drop them into Evernote.

We’re launching highlights as a freemium feature, which means non-subscribers get 5 free highlights per month. Instapaper subscribers, you get unlimited highlights!

Along with highlights, we’ve completely revamped the Instapaper website, incorporating the feedback you’ve provided us over the last few months. At long last, the Instapaper website is a fully-functional file system for managing, organizing, and acting on the articles and videos you see and save online.  

The overall look and feel of the website is much simpler, more intuitive, and more in line with our suite of mobile applications.  But the changes aren’t only cosmetic, we’ve also added a range of new features that users have been requesting:

* Drag-and-drop.  We know how much you loved having to reload the old Instapaper page with every click, but trust us — drag-and-drop is better.  Way better.

* Site-wide theming. Now the Instapaper website can be themed in White, Sepia, Dark, and a new theme we’re calling Storm, which very nicely fits somewhere between the Sepia and Dark modes.

* Multiselect editing for easier article management. No more clicking move, archive, or delete on each individual article, just select some articles and use the bulk “Move,” “Archive,” and “Delete” actions.

* Better folder organization and management. We’ve taken folders out of that inner column, and added them back into the main navigation as per your requests. We’ve also built the ability to add a folder directly from your list view, as well as drag & drop folders for easier organization.

* And, did we mention, highlights?

Last but not least, we had a new logo commissioned by Kris Sowersby under the direction of Justin Van Slembrouck. The new logo is Instapaper’s first “real logo”, whereas earlier versions were just our name typed in a serif font. There’s so much to say about the logo that Justin, Instapaper’s designer, is going to geek out about it in a separate post!

We hope you all really enjoy the new features and are digging the direction we’re taking Instapaper. If not, please let us know by emailing support@help.instapaper.com, Tweeting to @InstapaperHelp, or leaving a comment on the post. We always love hearing from you.

Thanks!
Instapaper Team

Instapaper, SSL, and You

So a funny thing happened on the way to this blog post. Last week, Instapaper enabled SSL by default. Great news, no? We pushed the change to production, drafted our blog post to announce the news, and then decided to wait a few days until we were sure everything was working as it should. And then, as if on cue, blam! The Heartbleed vulnerability was disclosed on Monday night. It required a bit of scrambling on our part, but nothing too painful.

Here’s what Instapaper users need to know about our Heartbleed fix, followed by an explanation of why and how we turned on SSL by default.

Heartbleed

As soon as Heartbleed came to light, we began taking all the necessary measures to close off any possible vulnerabilities.

On Monday evening, as soon as patches were available, we began patching all of our core systems. By Tuesday morning, our systems and our load balancer (which is operated by Amazon) had all been patched. Today, we have issued a new security certificate and invalidated all of the existing sessions to help ensure that our system stays secure. If you’re into reading certs, you’ll note that our new certificate has a Valid From date that indicates the day we originally purchased it, but the cert itself was replaced this morning.

We have no evidence that any user data was exposed by this vulnerability; however, for the sake of total safety, we are recommending that all users change their passwords.

SSL by Default

At Instapaper, we’re strongly committed to our users’ privacy and data security. In an effort to make Instapaper more secure, we’ve enabled SSL encryption by default for all requests on the service. Encrypting web requests by default makes it harder for others to identify users, and helps protect users who might not be aware that they are being observed. For our users, these changes should be unnoticeable — they will not affect your Instapaper experience and will automatically provide better privacy and data security.

To ensure backward compatibility for third-party applications, we will still allow public API requests over unencrypted HTTP. However, non-SSL API requests for third-party applications are discouraged as of today, and will not be supported as of June 1st, 2014. If you are a developer implementing an integration with Instapaper, we ask that you please take the necessary steps to enable SSL on all API requests prior to June 1st.

While all your requests to Instapaper will be encrypted, it’s important to note that some images and videos that appear inside of articles will still be retrieved via non-secure channels from the original provider. As a result, a hypothetical eavesdropper could potentially infer what content you’re viewing. If that’s a concern for you, some web browsers have settings that will disable the loading of non-SSL elements like images and videos.

For more information about SSL encryption, you can visit the following links:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transport_Layer_Security
https://publib.boulder.ibm.com/tividd/td/TRM/GC32-1323-00/en_US/HTML/admin231.htm

- JM Imbrescia
@thejohnmarc
jm@betaworks.com

Instapaper iOS 5.1.5

Instapaper iOS 5.1.5 launched today! The update contains several new features that have been high on users’ wish lists:

  • Instapaper Daily is now integrated into the “Browse” section. Instapaper Daily shows you the top article each day, giving you another (in this case, data-driven) way to find compelling articles to read.


  • Send to Kindle functionality.  This feature lets subscribers send their Read Later items to Kindle, directly from the Instapaper app. Before using this feature, you must register your Kindle email address with Instapaper.


  • AirPlay support. If you’re watching a long video you’ve saved to Instapaper (don’t forget, Instapaper is great for watching videos later), AirPlay lets you stream it to a bigger screen via, e.g., an Apple TV.


  • Back gestures with pagination enabled.  If you use pagination, you can now swipe left from the first page, or right from the last page, to return to your articles.

and… (wait for it…)

  • Auto-renewable subscriptions!

Implementing renewable subscriptions in the iOS version is an important advance for Instapaper. It’ll help us maintain our business and continue to evolve and improve Instapaper for all users. Above all, auto-renew removes a point of annoyance from the experience of our most active and loyal users.

Before purchasing the renewable subscription, you’ll need to agree to share some personal information, including name, email address, and ZIP code. As per our privacy policy, we promise that we will neither access nor store this additional information. It is simply a requirement of the auto-renewable subscription process, likely due to the feature being available first for magazine and newspaper publishers. So if you subscribe, please don’t be alarmed when you see it in the dialog box:



Also, auto-renewable subscriptions are managed directly through iTunes, and so you’ll have to return to iTunes to unsubscribe (not that you’d ever want to!). To unsubscribe you go to iOS Settings » iTunes » Apple ID » Manage button under Subscriptions setting.

Our next release will be the most ambitious Instapaper update since it was acquired by Betaworks. If you have any feature requests please let us know in the comments.  As always, thank you!

Best,
Brian

Instapaper Safari Extension

Safari users: Saving to Instapaper just got a whole lot better. Last December we rolled out a big update to Instapaper’s Chrome extension, and today we’re happy to announce we’ve brought those same great features to the Safari extension.

What’s new:

  • Shortcut:  A Ctrl+S keyboard shortcut to save the article you’re currently looking at.

  • Right-click:  Added “Instapaper” option to the right-click menu to save the current page, or any link on the current page.

  • Buttons:  Added “Save to Instapaper” buttons directly on Twitter, Reddit, and Hacker News. Alongside each Tweet, Reddit story, or Hacker News item, you’ll now find an inline Instapaper button.

  • Highlighting:  Enabled highlighting for article descriptions. Simply highlight a chunk of text, right-click it and choose “Instapaper” from the right-click menu, and your selection will be the Instapaper description for the article.

  • Toggle options:  The keyboard shortcut and inline saving options can be toggled by going to Safari  Perferences  Extensions  Instapaper

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What’s next on the roadmap for extensions?

  • Close tabs: The option to close a tab automatically after saving to Instapaper.

  • Save directly to folders: The option to save an article directly to an Instapaper folder, using your right-click menu.

  • Custom shortcuts: A customizable keyboard shortcut for saving an article.

If you have the Safari extension already installed you’ll still need to download and install the update manually, but from now on the Safari extension will update automatically whenever it needs to.

As always, let us know in the comments if you have any other feature requests!

Thanks,
Brian

brian@betaworks.com
@bthdonohue

Instapaper Weekly

Just before the holiday we quietly rolled out Instapaper Daily: a website that shows you the most popular article on Instapaper for any given day. Following the launch we added additional features to the Daily, such as keyboard shortcuts, and RSS feeds to each of the Daily pages.

Today, we’re proud to announce Instapaper Weekly: a Sunday-morning email digest of the most popular Instapaper articles from the past 7 days.

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Users who signed up for Instapaper in the past month will receive the Weekly automatically. If you registered before December 12th, you’ll have to manually opt-in to receive the Weekly. You can manage your settings for the Weekly Digest and Instapaper product updates in the Email Settings section to your profile.

The Weekly is Instapaper’s first real email product, and we have more exciting features we’ll be adding to it over the course of the next few months. Stay tuned!

Best,
Brian, @bthdonohue

Introducing Instapaper Daily

At Instapaper, we’re really into sorting the real-time stream of great reading content that flows through our servers. Today, we’re proud to announce our newest experiment - the Instapaper Daily, a retrospective lens that focuses on filtering and exploring quality content.

Instapaper Daily lets you read through a temporally organized collection of the most popular articles on Instapaper. This means you can discover the most popular article today or on each of the last 7 days, or jump to any date or month in 2013 and explore the biggest story on that day.


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Our first attempt to sort Instapaper’s nearly 400 thousand daily web links was through InstaRank, an algorithm that surfaces stories receiving widespread attention in the community.

But we noticed “popularity” is heavily dependent on whether an article is current — and then the content is lost during the next burst of incoming information. Because of this, we’ve spent time exploring the possibilities of filtering in new ways.  

In presenting Instapaper Daily, our aim was to retain the minimalist look, which is why we had Grant Custer (@GrantCuster), the man behind Instapaper’s website redesign, develop The Daily’s look. We realize people have varied interests in different categories of information, so Grant focused on easy category-based browsing and seven topical categories, like business, sports and health.

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In the future, all timelines will automatically update daily to provide you with one most popular article for each day. But in the meantime, feel free to disconnect from the content stream during the holidays. Just come back and check Instapaper Daily for the day’s most popular stories, articles you may have missed, or something entirely new.

suman | deb roy

data scientist, betaworks.

(@_RoySD)

Freebies from Instapaper

Instapaper is feeling a surge of holiday spirit this year.  From December 12th through the 19th, Instapaper for iOS will be free to download as part of Apple’s App of The Week program. We’re really excited to work with Apple to make Instapaper free for a limited time, making the app available to a wider audience of iOS users. 

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We’ve built a ton of improvements into Instapaper this year, including iPhoneiPad, and website redesigns, a rebuilt Android app, powerful sorting and filtering featuresInstaRank, better article parsing and video support, improved dark and sepia modes, and a Chrome extension, among many others. And, perhaps most excitingly, we launched Instapaper in 13 new languages: Japanese, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Korean, Spanish, Portuguese, German, French, Italian, Turkish, Russian, Dutch, and Polish. We’re thrilled that Apple is helping introduce the new, improved Instapaper to users worldwide.

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In addition to the App of the Week, we’re giving away a free 2-month Instapaper subscription to all new users through the end of the year. That means new users get instant access to subscriber-only features like search, third-party API integrations, and better “Send to Kindle” functionality.

We wish you all a happy and healthy holiday and new year!

- Instapaper Team, @instapaper

More love for Instapaper’s browser extension

The easiest, most useful way to get an article into Instapaper is using a browser extension.  If you use the Chrome browser, for example, you can install the Instapaper browser extension, and then all you have to do is click the “I” button whenever you’re looking at an article you’d like to read later in Instapaper.  

Easy, huh?  But wait: There’s more!

In our last Chrome extension blog post, we promised to roll out more features in the coming months.  Well, we just shipped the update!

Here’s what’s new:

  • Added “Save to Instapaper” to the right-click menu to save a page or a link. Now you can right-click on any link, and immediately save that link to Instapaper.
  • Created a keyboard shortcut to save the article you’re looking at.  In Mac OS X, the shortcut is Cmd+Shift+S. In Windows, it’s Ctrl+Shift+S.
  • Added “Save to Instapaper” buttons directly into Twitter, Reddit, Hacker News, and USV, when you go to one of those sites in your Chrome browser. Alongside each Tweet, Reddit story, Hacker News item, or USV post, you’ll now find an inline Instapaper button.
  • Built an Instapaper options page where can you toggle the keyboard shortcut and inline saving buttons for Twitter, Reddit, Hacker News, and USV. You can access this page by right clicking the Instapaper icon and selecting “Options”.
  • Enabled highlighting for article descriptions.  Simply highlight a key chunk of text, right-click it and choose “Save to Instapaper” from the right-click menu, and your selection will be the Instapaper description for the article.
  • If you’ve logged into Chrome using one of your Google accounts, the extension will sync your Instapaper preferences across all of your other logged-in Chrome browsers.

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Here’s what’s next on the roadmap for extensions:

  •  Bringing the Safari extension up to speed with the Chrome extension.
  • The option to close a tab automatically after saving to Instapaper.
  • The option to save an article directly to an Instapaper folder, using your right-click menu.
  • A customizable keyboard shortcut for saving an article.

The Chrome extension will auto-update, but if you haven’t downloaded it already you can grab it here. Let us know if you have any other feature requests in the comments!

Thanks,
Brian