- Amazon’s restrictions on the kindle only lets you export highlights and notes from books you’ve bought from Amazon. This leaves notes you’ve taken for any other documents trapped on your kindle. I like to download blog posts and other documents onto my kindle so I can read them away from my computer. So far it seems there’s no easy way to get these notes out of the kindle without connecting your kindle to your computer and going through the documents folder. Is it possible to get around the restriction without hacking the kindle?
- I needed a way to reference my highlights and notes for blog posts or for a future actions. Since I use trello for project management I wanted to see if it was possible to import all of my kindle notes to trello.
The Solution Part 1 – Exporting personal document notes out of your kindle
One workaround is to use the share function after highlighting the passage.
Normally highlights from books not purchased from Amazon are trapped on your kindle. The kindle will not upload to your Amazon profile.
However, using the “share” option for the quote instead of the “highlight” or “notes” option forces Amazon to upload the snippet to your “Recent Activities” page.
So first, you’ll want to link up your twitter account to your kindle. I set up a new private twitter account just for book notes because I didn’t want to flood my normal twitter account.
Now you can go and share your highlights. Then click the link from your tweet. From there you’ll want to click on the orange link with your profile’s name. This will take you to your main “Recent Activities” page which contains all your “shared” highlights.
The url for this page should be something like https://kindle.amazon.com/profile/Your-Nickname/YourIDNumber and all of your shared highlights (even from your own documents) will be stored there.
The Solution Part 2 – Importing your notes to trello
The semi-automated (copy paste) method
You can now copy and paste all your highlights straight from your kindle activity page into trello. I like to create a card/list in trello for each book I’m reading. As each highlight shows up on a separate line you can just paste the data straight into trello and each highlight will show up as a new item.
Use rss feeds and ifttt to automatically convert new highlights into trello cards.
Alternatively if you have a paid subscription to feedity then you can use ifttt to email any new highlights straight to your trello list.
You’ll need to create a rss feed of your kindle page if you want a truly “hands off” import of your notes and highlights to trello.
I found free services such as Page2Rss and the free version of feedity too limiting to work for this method.
Remember to change the “email to board” settings in your iftt recipe to post to the correct list every time you change books. Otherwise all your notes will be mixed together in one list. The email address for your boards are hidden in your board’s sidebar.
Pro tip: Set up your ifttt recipe to include #hashtags or @mentions before sending it to trello. Trello parses #hashtags as labels and @mentions as assignments to your team members.