Save Read Later to Pinboard from any app (Service)

I’ve been using Pinboard instead of Instapaper for a good while now to save all my read-it-later articles and links. It works great, especially in conjunction with Paperback, the (currently in closed beta) read-later service by Nick Wynja. Yesterday Nick suggested on ADN that some services to save to Pinboard from anywhere on Mac OS X would be helpful.

I agree, so I made ‘em.

Here are three services which allow you to save read-later links to Pinboard from most applications on your Mac. These just save a little time. Rather than loading a link up in your browser and then using the bookmarklet, you can do it almost instantaneously.

1. Save to Pinboard (link)

This service allows you to right click on links and save them to read later. It will work on rich text links, hyperlinks in documents, links in browsers, etc. It should work for any link you can right click and run services on: for example most of the links in Readkit.

2. Save to Pinboard (URL)

If all you have is a plain URL, fear not! Instead of showing the previous service, if you select a URL and right click the selected text this service will show up.

3. Save plain URL from clipboard to Pinboard

. In this case they usually have a “copy URL” option.

You’ll want to add a keyboard shortcut for this service (System Preferences > Keyboard > Keyboard Shortcuts > Services).

Then just copy the link to the clipboard, and invoke the service.

Installation instructions

  1. Download the 3 services and place them in the ~/Library/Services folder.

  2. Open each one in Automator (right click > Open With… > Open With Automator) and change the variable in the “Run Shell Script” action which holds the Pinboard authtoken to your own one. You can find and generate your authtoken by going to

  3. If you don’t have Growl installed, delete the last 2 actions in the workflow:

A couple of notes

It’s possible that this might not handle every link you throw at it. The services will alert you via Growl notification if it’s successful in saving. If you don’t see anything then either Pinboard is down, the link is too weird for the service to work out, or your internet isn’t working.

If a lot of people start using the services then I’ll probably update them with a few more features and complexity, and a bit simpler installation, but for now it’s more or less on you to figure out. Feel free to get in touch if you get stuck and I’ll see if I can help.