Reader is Dead

A collection of tools to help with the Google Reader shutdown

Installation and Requirements

All tools are written in Python and have been tested with Python 2.7 on Mac OS X 10.8. To install them, download either the .zip or .tar archive. Expand the archive, and then open the resulting directory in your terminal. Command lines to invoke specific tools are listed below.

On Windows, it's a bit more complicated:

  1. You'll probably need to download Python 2.7 first.
  2. Make sure that Python is in your PATH.
  3. Shift right-click the folder that you got when you expanded the .zip, and choose "Open command window here".
  4. Once you have a command-line, you can run the same scripts that are mentioned below, but add a .bat extension to the script name (e.g. bin\zombie_reader.bat instead of bin/zombie_reader).

zombie_reader

Using Google Reader's reanimated corpse to browse archived data.

Takes an archive generated by reader_archive and provides a browsing UI for it. The browsing UI is using a saved copy of Reader's JavaScript and CSS, thus it should behave almost exactly like Reader.

To use it:

bin/zombie_reader ~/Downloads/reader_archive

http://localhost:8074/ will then load in your browser (you can also open it manually). You will see the familiar Reader interface. All subscriptions, folders and tags should be clickable. The "Home" page has been repurposed to display some stats about your archive as well as links to archived data that cannot be reached through the normal Reader interface (mainly sharing-related data).

Here's a demo of the tool browsing around an account:

item_lookup

Look up an item in an archived Google Reader account.

Takes an archive generated by reader_archive and provides a command-line UI for examining items within it.

To use it:

bin/item_lookup --archive_directory=~/Downloads/reader_archive 0306277b9d275db1

The tool will then list all of the streams that the item appears in, the item body, and any comments made on that item. You can provide multiple item IDs (as additional command line arguments).

reader_browser

Still under development

Browse an archived Google Reader account.

Takes an archive generated by reader_archive and provides a browsing UI for it.

To use it:

bin/reader_browser ~/Downloads/reader_archive

Then load http://localhost:8071/ in your web browser (the script will attempt to do automatically) to see the contents of the archive.

Archived Tools

Now that Google Reader has been shut down, some of the initial tools (focused on getting the data out) are no longer useful. They were: