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Old 01-11-2011, 02:28 AM   #1
readbeam
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Try hosted calibre on ReadBeam.com

On readbeam.com I have cobbled together basically a hosted version of calibre.
This allows you to either request news-sources manually or have them sent to you on a schedule e.g: Get me the New York Times every morning at 6 and mail it automagically to my Kindle.

The site is currently neither beautiful nor comfortable. Please give it a spin and let me know what you think. Please be gentle when requesting many sources on a frequent schedule, this is quite computing intensive and may bog down or crash the system.

P.S. I chose to compile all the recipes on github.com, for all git users out there, this may be helpful.

P.P.S This is built on the hard work of Kovid and many recipe writers, I just added the plumbing. Thanks!

P.P.P.S I am especially interested on your views about all the copyright issues I may face here. My current understanding is - basically - that the manual fetch should be ok, because one person is manually requesting a copy of a site, like when you request a site with your browser and maybe have an adblocker installed.
I hope the subscription service is legal as well, because not I am serving the recipes, but you are. So my line of thought is: I am just offering a hosting platform with an API, you are programming it and doing something 'bad' (accessing e.g. the economist.com site, that is). So it's again you doing the scraping...

But I don't know, please let me know what you think. If there are compelling reasons I may lock down the site and just use it privately.

Thanks for your time,

Tom

X.S. For now it's mobi only, if there is enough demand, I will add epub support later.

Last edited by readbeam; 01-11-2011 at 03:11 AM. Reason: Omission
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Old 01-14-2011, 03:52 AM   #2
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Thanks for your feedback so far. On public demand I added epub to the output conversion, that enables all non-Kindleistas to fetch sources and subscribe to whatever you want to.
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Old 01-16-2011, 10:23 AM   #3
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Thanks! Just tried it and it's working fine...

I'd be interested in setting something like this up on my own server though. It'd take the strain off your own setup...

How difficult was it to set up?
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Old 01-16-2011, 01:49 PM   #4
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Hi readbeam,

I tested the manual mode and it worked fine. I also tried the subscription part, but I do not know enough about these servers to set up a proper rule. In particular I did not understand what the "command line" should look like. I think I understood that I need to copy the recipe as code to the "recipe part".

Pardon me my stupidity, but I have to ask: why is this necessary. Why can not I just click a "repeat pattern" and a recipe from the drop down list (as in manual) to get a subscription?

Could you please give just one working example how to put together a subscription?

I managed to write a Windows script for my PC to run a command-line calibre script to deliver me news feeds every morning (see this post). The trouble is, my PC is not very reliable, it does not wake up from hibernation every morning. This is why I am so interested in readbeam.com.

Thanxx, Mixx

Last edited by Mixx; 01-16-2011 at 01:58 PM.
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Old 01-19-2011, 04:49 PM   #5
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Thanks for setting up this site.. so far my subscriptions have been working great.

My only question is what time are the daily recipes run at? If its just after midnight, that might be too early to pick up the days news.
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Old 01-19-2011, 05:45 PM   #6
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My little complain is - I am from Europe and I am not sure what "morning" on your site actually means.

It would be good to add GMT (or any other time) specifically.

(I haven't tried the service yet)
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Old 01-21-2011, 05:36 AM   #7
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Thanks for creating this service - I'd just about given up looking for an online subscription service before I stumbled on readbeam

I've just got a quick question, I'm not sure if this is me or not, but the titles of the subscriptions include the date they were fetched (for instance 'The Straits Times [Tue, 18 Jan 2011]'). This has the effect that instead of placing previous issues into the 'Periodicals: Back Issues' folder on my Kindle, instead they begin to pile up on the homescreen - the kindle treating each like a different subscription.

I've tried copying the recipes I was using in calibre (which don't add a date to the title) into the readbeam subscription form, but this doesn't seem to make any difference?

(And seconding running - it would be an added bonus if they could get delivered at specified times for those of us in differing parts of the world )
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Old 12-09-2011, 12:30 PM   #8
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Thanks


EDIT:
it gives error like this when I try to login again:
"We're sorry, but something went wrong.
We've been notified about this issue and we'll take a look at it shortly."
is this a new bug or did you give up working on this site?

EDIT 2: Ok, fixed.

Last edited by thomass; 12-10-2011 at 12:01 AM.
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Old 12-12-2011, 04:55 AM   #9
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With the current release all the above requests have been handled.
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Old 12-13-2011, 02:49 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thomass
is there a way to determine when to run a recipe?
Sure, just select the timezone of the eDoc you want to convert. This usually is the place where the source is published. For West Coast Americas select "America West" and then select the schedule, like "Every morning" or "Thursday morning".
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Old 01-08-2012, 10:28 AM   #11
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question

Thanks for this unbelievable service! Is there any way to have the news fetched and emailed a few hours earlier? I have it set to America East - morning, which sends it around 10am EST, but I generally read the news a few hours before that, and many of the papers (e.g. New York Times) are published earlier in the morning.

Thanks so much!

EDIT: Don't worry about this, I changed it to Europe - every noon which should send at the time I want.

Last edited by sk1; 01-08-2012 at 11:20 AM.
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Old 01-08-2012, 02:16 PM   #12
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readbeam once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.readbeam once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.readbeam once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.readbeam once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.readbeam once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.readbeam once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.readbeam once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.readbeam once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.readbeam once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.readbeam once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.readbeam once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.
 
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sk1, great if this solves your problem! ReadBeam is currently completely swamped with new users so that I even had to suspend new user signups.
What this means is, every document run takes 4-7 hours depending on the weekday. So if you select "morning" this currently means somewhere around noon. Sorry for that!

I am contemplating switching to a freemium model where say the top 100 recipes are free (as long as the owner of the content does not object). Private recipes will only be available for paying users, I'll target something like 5 EUR/USD per month (for as many recipes as you fancy - within reason).
With that I can justify spending more time on ReadBeam and spend more on hardware and traffic.
But this change is probably a while off, due to time constraints on my side.
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Old 01-09-2012, 08:06 AM   #13
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I am delighted to find readbeam to automatically fetch the recipes for me as I have difficulty in getting my calibre does this job on my pc and I have no clue how to resolve it. I subscribed "Ming Pao - Hong Kong" and expected to receive it in my Kindle "Every Morning" "East Asia" time. However, I found that I only received yesterday's version rather than the current version. Even if I clicked on "Refresh" on the website in the morning and manually downloaded the mobi file, I still got an old copy. I found on the website that not until late afternoon or even evening my time (GMT +8) that the system fetched the current version. Any hints what I should do in order to get the current version in the morning?
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Old 01-09-2012, 08:10 AM   #14
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The reason is, conversion takes too long currently (as said above). So for now timing is way off.
I will fix that with a switch to a freemium model (some things free / some things paid). I don't see any other possibility to avoid having the next server swamped with users again without this. Sorry for the inconvenience.
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Old 01-09-2012, 02:00 PM   #15
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If it would work with Python 2.6, then 2.6 with Psyco may improve performance... Psyco has not been updated to support 2.7.
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