I should probably spend some time talking about what the title of this post actually means. Given that this is the first post of this blog, some explanation as to what “early access” and “Feed Journaler” is probably called for. Hopefully, “now available” is relatively clear.
What Is Feed Journaler?
I might start by explaining what “Feed Journaler” actually is, and why it exists at all. I guess the simplest answer is that it’s a Mac app that automatically imports your blog post into your Day One journal. It does this by reading your blog’s RSS feed. You add a “feed configuration” within the app, which corresponds to the blog you want to import, and set the “Feed URL” to the URL of the RSS feed. You then type in the name of the journal that you want these blog posts to show up in, and add any tags that you want to set on the imported entry.
The app takes over from here: once every five minutes or so, Feed Journaler will poll your RSS feed, and imports any new entries into your configured Day One journal of choice. It will continue to do until you quit the app (you should be able to close the main window).
“So what?”, you might ask. “I can do this already with IFTTT or Zapier”.
Well, I thought so too. But I found the user experience somewhat lacking. For one thing, the imported journal entries were completely stripped of any formatting. No headers, no bold, no code-blocks. It was all just plain text. But probably even more unsatisfying was that the imported journal entries did not include any images. If you’re a blogger that likes to post photos, and want to keep these photos in your journal, maybe to get them printed and bound at the end of the year, it would be nice if those photos were included.
So that’s why Feed Journaler exists. It’s an app for importing your blog posts into Day One while preserving the formatting and including the images of the post. At least, that’s the idea.
Current Known Limitations
So what does early access mean? It basically means that the app is not quite ready for full release. It works (or at least it should), but there are several things that are not quite finished. For example:
- You’ll need to install the
dayone2command line tool manually. I’d eventually like to have this done automatically upon first launch, but I didn’t get the change to do so. There are instructions on how to do this.
- Only RSS feeds are supported at the moment. I’d like to add support for Atom and JSON feeds down the line, but it’s not quite there yet.
- Only the raw
descriptionelement of the feed item is supported. Any content within a
<content:encoded>element hasn’t been tested and may not work. Hopefully this shouldn’t be a problem for most blogging engines (I’ve tested Micro.blog, Blot.im and sites generated using Hugo) but if you run into trouble, please let me know.
- Posts with a number of images (greater than 10) may not be imported. This is because there’s a limit of 10 attachments that can be included in an imported journal entry. I haven’t worked out a nice way to handle this case, and I’m not sure what will happen to a blog post with more than 10 photos. Hopefully it should not import that entry (I’d prefer this over an entry imported with only half the photos) but this is something that I need to test.
- Dealing with errors need more testing. Hopefully the app should give you some indication that something didn’t work.
- Auto-update is not in place yet. I’d suggest checking in on this blog for news of further releases.
Along with the above, there are some rough edges that still need to be smoothed out, or bugs that need to be fixed. Hopefully there wouldn’t be many of them, but if you find some, please let me know.
Please Give It A Try
So that’s it. Please feel free to try it and let me know how you go. This is still early days so I’d suggest trying this with a test journal first. This is to just avoid any unpleasant surprises that may show up in your main journal. You can always move the imported journal entries into your main journal if you’d like to keep them.
I’d appreciate any feedback that you may have, which you can send by emailing ‘feedback’ at ‘feedjournaler.app’. If you’re on Micro.blog, you can hit me up there as well.
Thanks for your consideration. I hope it works for you :)