The Joy of Instapaper

I started using Instapaper after hearing Scott Hanselman explain its benefits during his talk about increasing personal productivity. The tool helps you read web articles on your own time schedule. I think you'd like it. I'd heard about Instapaper a while back, but didn't understand how handy it is until I saw it in use.

The Problem

There are many, many ways to find great things to read on the web. People are always linking to interesting articles on Twitter. Some sites, like Hacker News, aggregate the most interesting articles of the day on a certain topic. Everywhere you look there's intriguing content on the web, and the most interesting stuff is more than two paragraphs long.

However, the moment when you find a great new article isn't always the best time to read it. If you're checking Twitter in line at the grocery store, you probably don't have time to finish that four-page New York Times article. Or, if you're taking a quick five-minute break from work, you may not have time to power through the interesting-but-distracting article your friend emailed you about raising urban chickens. Eventually you could end up having 20 tabs of unfinished articles in your browser, all of which you think you'll read eventually, but will only end up confusing you.

The Solution - "Read It Later"

Instapaper is a simple tool that lets you mark interesting webpages, then come back and read them later on the device of your choice. You set it up by dragging the Instapaper's "Read Later" bookmarklet up to you bookmark toolbar.


When you're hunting around for great articles, just click "Read Later" and it's saved. Then, when it's convenient, you can return to the Instapaper website (or iPhone/iPad app ) and browse through your treasure trove of brain-enhancing blog posts. I end up getting a lot of Instapaper reading in at the end of the day in bed. TMI?

Here's what Instapaper looks like in action:


Instapaper Website


Instapaper iPhone App


Do you use Instapaper? Maybe some other great productivity-enhancing tool?

brain-enhancing blog posts.