iOS Workflow Question

Just been looking at this problem myself. Have tried several work arounds, but nothing is entirely satisfactory.

I now just save any articles I want to file, that I find when mobile, and wish to organise in DTP, I send to Things3. When I return to my macOS machine I then work through the list and pdf/file/tag them.

Thanks for reviving this thread, @zenfrog. I still have not solved this problem. Currently, I’m adding things to Safari’s Reading List when I’m on iOS and then waiting until I get back to my Mac to send the functional pdfs to DevonThink. Unfortunately, DTTG is just not the workhorse that the Mac version is. On iOS, I use it for reference and marking up files, but rarely will I send things to DTTG if I’m on my iOS device.

Here’s what I would like to do: can I import my Reading List into DT? When I get busy, I can have several hundred articles in my Reading List. Ultimately, I want them saved as clean (no ads) pdfs with reference links intact in DT. But in the interim, I would settle for having the bookmarks or webarchives saved in DT so at least I could find the articles in a DT search.

  • Can DT import the Reading List from Safari?
  • I know it can import a watched folder from Instapaper. Would this be a better solution? It is critical that DT capture the source url. Would one need the paid version of Instapaper do do this? Would Pocket do it better?

This is not possible in DEVONthink To Go but…

If DEVONthink on the Mac has Full Disk Access enabled in System Preferences > Security & Privacy > Privacy, you can use File > Import > Bookmarks > Safari. This should contain the Reading List entries.

Note: This is not syncing with Safari, so if you edit the Bookmarks in DEVONthink, it has no effect on Safari’s Bookmarks.

Just for others’ possible interest.

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There is a free web service called PrintFriendly that does quite a good job at converting websites to PDFs in a streamlined format while preserving links — and even allowing you to select components to exclude.

I don’t think it preserved the original URL as part of the metadata but it includes it as a link at the top of the document.

I use it both on macOS and iOS (not least for consistency of the look of the archived articles).

You can check it out here:

Hope this helps.

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Thanks Tim. I’ve been using for this purpose. But, I’ve noticed some websites function better than others. I’ll definitely add PrintFriendly to my toolbox. I tested it and it works pretty well.

Been reading through this thread as I am also hoping figure out how to preserve links in PDF’s when saving from iOS.

I am new to DT on the Mac - I use iOS primarily. I don’t know exactly how scripts and automations work on the Mac just yet, but I was wondering if something like this was workflow was feasible:

  • to setup a local folder/text file on a mac that hazel and/or DEVONthink watches.
  • If a link is saved to this location (say via DropBox), it triggers an automation or script that saves those links to DEVONthink as PDF (regular or clutter free?)

Is that something that scripting is capable of in DT? Thanks!

Scripting can do a great many things, but how about smart rules?

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Performing the rule on moving (why?) and then moving the result to a different group seems a little bit unexpected :slight_smile:

Just covering the options for input into the watched group, including moving files from other locations in DEVONthink.
Also just targeting the one group to be specific in the smart rule to avoid unintentionally processing other files. That’s optional, of course, but a safe approach.

I’ve been following this thread, as well. I would love the ability to save links from iOS that end as PDFs on macOS (in the same robust way, eg - with original url).

Forgive me, @BLUEFROG, but I don’t quite see how this smart rule accomplishes this. Does it rely on one of the workflows mentioned above to input an image or PDF to process? I think I must be misunderstanding or missing a step; there’s a lot of info in this thread.

Thanks for any clarification.

Though you inspired me to test something. I think I have something that mostly works:

The Convert to PDF function in Smart Rules doesn’t seem to have the ‘clutter free’ option, nor does it add the url at the top, but it does create a PDF of the link saved from DT on iOS.

Am I missing something? Can anyone see how to make this better?

(This is my first Smart Rule in DT, so I’m not familiar with all the options. I’ve made Smart Rules in other programs, so generally understand them.)


I want to follow up on this–I want to do something similar (but converting bookmarks to formatted notes), but the Convert to Formatted Note creates a much uglier and cluttered result than is possible using the Sorter or the web clipper.

I’ve also looked at the AppleScript dictionary, but don’t see a way to do it clutter-free. Any ideas?