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Bill Brown

A complicated man.

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I'm a fan of Instapaper the service and the iPhone app. Lately, though I have accumulated a queue of quite-long articles that I can't seem to decrease. I really want to read the content I save for later; this backlog feels qualitatively different from the substantial RSS backlog I've built up in Google Reader.

I got to thinking that it'd be handy to listen to my Instapaper items. I remembered the developer's blog entry touting his accessibility improvements and that got me to thinking: why not use VoiceOver? This seemed like the ideal use since the Instapaper-stored content is primarily textual and simplified.

Sure enough, it was easy and performed beautifully—enabling me to listen to an article or two while I did the dishes. Here's how to do it:

  1. Set up the triple-tap of the Home button to toggle VoiceOver.
    1. Go to Settings.
    2. Tap on "General."
    3. Scroll down and tap on "Accessibility."
    4. Scroll to bottom and tap on "Triple-click Home."
    5. Tap on "VoiceOver" and save your setting by going back.
  2. Open Instapaper and the article you want.
  3. Triple tap the Home button.
  4. Swipe downward on the screen with two fingers. This starts the actual reading.

The neat thing about this is that Instapaper automatically saves your place and syncs it with all devices, so resuming where you left off is easy.

[UPDATE (12/18/2012): Other options brought to my attention include Instapaper to Podcast, Voice Dream Reader, and Readomator. I still like my way best for the time being because it's free and uncomplicated.]