Plucker Desktop for Offline Reading by David Whelan When is an RSS feed not an RSS feed? I had come to see them all as being similarly designed. But at least two sites have created an RSS table of contents, but once you click through, you are looking at a multi-page article. And most RSS applications don’t seem able to grab the content. So I revisited the Palm software world to see what was available. Imagine my surprise to see that Plucker was not only a very nice e-book reader but could handle my offline content as well!
The Plucker Desktop application installs on Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X. It enables you to select a URL or local file to synchronize. For Web pages, you can choose to spider multiple levels of a site, optionally grab images, and much more. I’m still trying to optimize this process – how many levels, etc. The first few times I ended up grabbing far more than I wanted.
The site I’m trying to grab is mobile.newsweek.com. When I grab it with Avantgo, I don’t get all of the paginated content (although I get some). Plucker is the first app that has gotten all of the content. I am using a filter to grab only content from the Newsweek mobile site:
which should grab the detail.jsp contents pages as well as the item.jsp sub pages (as well as the database calls … jsp?blahblahblah for each page).
Plucker desktop can be set to synchronize for multiple devices from one computer and can be scheduled to update the channels you set. This feature helps to get what can be a very slow channel download early in the morning, well before I am awake to sync up.