Extract highlights of an article then save the link to the original source?

Hi everyone,
I wonder if DT3 can do it or I better find another tool for this particular job? I often read interesting articles in the web or News Explorer. Sometimes, I want to extract some interesting parts of the article to reference later, so not to scroll through a very long text. I want to extract my selections (non-contiguous (if possible), save that to DT with formatting, links ETC and save the link to a source text. How can I achieve that?

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What have you tried so far?

I have tried Clip to DevonThink safari extension but it saves the whole webpage. I also tried saving the page’s selection as a PDF then saving it and entering the URL manually but this breaks my flow.

Try “New formatted note” from the services menu if you’re using Safari browser and have text selected. That works ok here and adds the URL to the original source.

However, you can’t select non-contiguous text in Safari. Or at least I don’t know how.

Well, Readwise is designed to do exactly that. I don’t know that they really have any competitors at present though hopefully someone else will say if someone else is running a service.

Readwise can’t export to DT, but it does export to several apps that could be used to achieve what you want. For example it has an Obsidian plugin that downloads highlights automatically to markdown files. I have the vault indexed to my DT database, and I periodically import the markdown files into my database and file them to the right place (if you navigate by search you wouldn’t need to do this step).

The end result is basically what you’re after - I highlight what I read online, the highlights automatically end up in markdown files in my database along with source URL, author, date read (that bit’s customisable). Other than me manually moving my files around, there’s no “work” involved.

You are a hero. Works almost perfectly. It remains to be seen why I cannot assign CTRL+N hotkey to this action, but its outside of the scope of this forum. Thanks for your help.

I would recommend being more obscure in your hotkey choices, like using Option-Command-/ instead.


I am using “Devonthink 3: Take Formatted Note” - is that what you mean? It’s a great idea but I do not get the source link - any idea why?

Also why do some of the services appear only in Safari and not in Chrome? Can I add the others to Chrome somehow?

Try “New formatted note” from the services menu if you’re using Safari browser and have text selected. That works ok here and adds the URL to the original source.html.zip (2.2 KB)

I was translating literally from the German version. So, maybe it’s “Take” instead of “New” :wink:
When I tried it, the URL of the note is set to the URL of the website as shown in Safari.

The “sending” app announces what it can send. I guess, Chrome doesn’t want to send “RTF” nor HTML (which would result in a formatted note). And you can’t add that to the services menu: If the app can’t send RTF, there’s no point in adding “Take RTF note” to its services menu.

Having said that, Firefox seems to think that it can send everything. Which is bloody nonsense, but that’s how it is.


No, you can’t add it to Chrome. That’s not how services work.

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Look in the formatted note’s metadata (Tools->Get Info->Generic) for the URL.