View Your Paperless Lists on the Web

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I've been using a list-making app called Paperless. Although I'm a big supporter of apps that use plain text files, Paperless stores its lists on Dropbox in XML. No biggie. I've already written scripts to import a list into Paperless and export a list from Paperless.

The developer includes a stylesheet in the XML files, so that if you open one up in the browser, it looks readable. All you have to do is open an XML file in your /Paperless Dropbox folder in a web browser. Unfortunately for me, I am at an office computer all day, and I do not have my Dropbox files sitting in my hard drive. So to view those XML files I would have to download them from Dropbox to my work computer hard drive and then open them in the browser.

To overcome this handicap, I have written a tool that will allow you to view any number of your Paperless lists online. All you have to do is make the lists you want to view shareable, and enter these URLs into a form. Shared Dropbox URLs are not easily discoverable, and if you really don't want someone to accidentally come upon one of your XML files, then don't make the URL public.

The script I developed generates each of your lists in an HTML table. The URLs are not uploaded to any server. The script just reads your XML files locally, so you can feel secure that the view of your lists that you see in the browser is not viewable by anyone else online. You can even just download the html file to your hard drive and use it locally (that is, open it from the hard drive into your browser).

To see how it works, visit the page, enter the following four Dropbox URLs into the input field, and then hit Publish. These are the four lists that come pre-installed when you download Paperless to your iOS device.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/1c3j4u1y7ajcwss/Today.xml,https://www.dropbox.com/s/9l46i1iojr6nc3t/Story%20Outline.xml,https://www.dropbox.com/s/ptj4f95md4fkkpd/Someday.xml,https://www.dropbox.com/s/fbp9iv7shwy5t0f/Groceries.xml

You should see four lists generated below the input form.

If you want to view your own lists, just get the shared Dropbox URL for each, and enter them as a comma-separated list.

This is version 1.0, and I will likely work on styling and generating more of a grid than having the lists stacked on top of each other.


Last built: Mon, May 12, 2014 at 8:52 AM

By Jeffrey Kishner, Friday, January 31, 2014 at 1:10 PM.