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Google Scholar alert digest

aggregate google scholar email alerts by paper

Simplifies scientific paper discovery by aggregating all unread emails under a Gmail label from the Google Scholar alerts, grouping papers by title and producing a report (Markdown/HTML/JSON).

How to use

To use this tool for generating a report on new papers from Google Scholar, do the following:

  1. Search on Google Scholar for a paper of an author
  2. Create an Alert (for citations, new or similar publications)
  3. Create a Gmail filter, moving all those emails under a dedicated Label
  4. Run this tool to get an aggregated report (in Markdown or HTML) of all the papers from the unread emails

For more details, please refer to the documentation.


Make sure you have a recent version of go. Then clone this repository:

git clone

Building a binary (optional)

Alternatively, you can try to build a scholar-alert-digest binary and put it under $GOPATH/bin with:

cd "$(mktemp -d)" && go mod init scholar-alert-digest  && go get

However this approach is known to yield errors and is not recommended.

Configure google cloud

Enable "Gmail API" Google Cloud Platform (GCP) project & download credentials.json following these steps.
That will guide you through creation of a new GCP project, enabling the Gmail API and geting "OAuth client ID" - authorization credentials for a desktop application that are needed in order to get access to your email messages at Gmail

After placing credentials.json in the project directory, you need to authenticate the application. You can do this by running

go run main.go

An link will be printed (and possibly opened in your browser). Follow the login instructions, selecting the google account you used for the previous step if you have multiple. You will get a warning that google has not verified the app; click Continue, and then Continue again.

Oh no! This site can't be reached! You'll get a "refused to connect" message. That is fine! Just go to the url bar and look for a section like this:


Copy the part following the = sign (importantly not including the trailing &scope) and paste it into the terminal. Now the app is authenticated. In the future you won't need to repeat this step


The CLI tool is used to generate one-time Markdown/HTML reports.

To find your specific label name:

go run main.go -labels

To generate the report, either pass the label name though CLI:

go run main.go -l '<your-label-name>'

Or export it as an env var:

export SAD_LABEL='<your-label-name>'
go run main.go


To output rendered HTML or JSON instead of the default Markdown, use

go run main.go -html
go run main.go -json

To mark all emails that were aggregated in the current report as read, use

go run main.go -mark

To include read emails in the separate section of the report, do

go run main.go -read

To only aggregate the email subjects do

go run main.go -subj | uniq -c | sort -dr

There is an optional more compact report template that may be useful for a large number of papers:

go run main.go -compact

To include authors in the paper details snippet, use

go run main.go -authors

To include references to original email into the report, do:

go run main.go -refs

Web Server

The Web UI exposes HTML report generation to multiple concurrent users.


It is possible to test it locally, without Gmail app configuration from below, by using emails from ./fixtures by running:

go run ./cmd/server -test


It does not support the same OAuth client credentials as CLI from credentials.json.

It requires:

  • To create a new credentials in your API project<NNN>
  • "Credentials" -> "Create credentials" -> "Web application" type
  • Add http://localhost/login/authorized value to Authorized redirect URIs field
  • Copy the Client ID and Client secret

Pass in the ID and the secret as env vars e.g by

export SAD_GOOGLE_ID='<client id>'
export SAD_GOOGLE_SECRET='<client secret>'

You do not need to pass the label name on the startup as it can be chosen at runtime at /labels.


The report generation is exposed through a web server that can be started with

go run ./cmd/server [-compact]

to spin up a server at http://localhost:8080

Start by visiting http://localhost:8080/login to get the user OAuth access token. Visit http://localhost:8080/labels to chose your label name.


Apache License, Version 2.0. See LICENSE