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I have a very specific workflow that I can't find a simple solution for.

I want to be able to make a list of web pages to read offline. Not articles, whole web pages. And I want to keep them up-to-date.

I really want an app for iPad that does the following.

  1. Lets me enter a list of webpages and maintain that list.
  2. Hit a button in the app, and it'll update every page on that list and store a complete offline copy so I can pursue it while on the train.
  3. Still maintain links, so I can click on them (so, no PDFs or whatever).
  4. Optionally have the ability to set readable fonts.
  5. Even better, if there was a way to export this list and modify it on my computer, share it, manipulate it etc. (or if there were a web serivce with an API).

My personal use case is very simple. I have an Android phone (Samsung Galaxy S2) and an iPad (v1, wifi only, but I can use the tethering on my phone to get online). I'm a Wikipedia administrator, and there are a variety of public noticeboards for discussions of interest to administrators, like the administrators' noticeboard and the usually drama-filled administrators' noticeboard for incidents. I'd say there's probably about 10-20 pages I want. I'd rather like it if I could get either my iPad, wake up in the morning, push the "update" button, go brush my teeth and by the time I'm leaving for my commute, have all the pages up-to-date and readable on the train.

Answers you may suggest that are wrong up-front:

  • Instapaper/Readability/Read It Later: those are for saving things broadly like newspaper articles for later reading. They are optimized for extracting text. They are fantastic, but don't actually meet the use case.
  • Some combination of Evernote, Google Docs, AppleScript/Python/Ruby/Perl and sticky tape: I've got enough pain and broken software in my life already.
  • Anything involving RSS. Again, look at the links above. There are RSS feeds for individual changes to the page, but I'm interested in saving the whole page, not getting an RSS feed.

Basically what I'm looking for is an iOS version of what they referred to as an "offline browser" back in the early days of the web. Is there such a thing that doesn't suck?

share|improve this question
    
I originally asked this on SuperUser. Apparently, questions about iOS software are out of scope on a site that allows questions on "computer hardware and software". I also am interested in Android software that does the same thing - so I've asked on the Android Enthusiasts SE - android.stackexchange.com/questions/19135/… –  Tom Morris Feb 5 '12 at 19:01

1 Answer 1

up vote 3 down vote accepted

As always, "there's an app for that". Or a few:

  • Web offline seems closest to your scenario. $1.99 at this time.
  • Offline pages seems like a strong candidate, but pricier
  • Terra web browser is free and will let you save pages for offline reading, but it's a manual process.
share|improve this answer
    
Web Offline does the job perfectly. I have set up a list of pages, and can just hit 'cache' and it recaches that list of pages. Very handy. Thanks. –  Tom Morris Feb 6 '12 at 11:13
    
Does someone download the PDFs also and can soemone sync its directory to DropBox directly to have the offline-access over multiple devices? –  hhh Oct 19 '12 at 9:37

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