One of the unique traits of Workflow is its integration with native iPhone and iPad apps. By abstracting URL schemes from the process of building workflows that communicate with apps, the Workflow team has been able to offer actions to automate apps such as OmniFocus, Drafts, and Ulysses with support for text, images, and even documents.
Increasingly, however, iOS users who rely on their devices as their primary computers are leveraging web services for their daily tasks. And in the past few years, a different kind of automation – web automation – has complemented (if not replaced altogether) native automation to save time on the iPhone and iPad through web APIs.
The Workflow team knows this, and their latest integration is aimed at extending Workflow to any web service – even if it doesn't offer an iOS app or a native web action in Workflow. Today, Workflow is launching a new IFTTT integration to trigger web recipes.
By fusing workflow actions with the power of IFTTT's web API glue, IFTTT support in Workflow promises to take iOS automation further than it's ever been, drastically altering the scope of Workflow's capabilities.
Great change for those who want to populate their journal entries with content from the web: Day One has launched their IFTTT channel today, which will let you create all sorts of automated recipes such as saving Instagram pictures to a journal, emailing a new entry to yourself, or logging check-ins from a third-party service.
Much as Day One 2 was criticized for ditching iCloud and Dropbox in lieu of its own sync, integrations like this are always better when the developers can fully control the sync platform they're using. Thanks to Day One Sync and support for multiple journals, you can connect to IFTTT and set your recipes to save data into a dedicated journal separate from your main thoughts (something that bugged me a few years ago with a similar solution).
I've been playing around with the beta of Day One + IFTTT, and it works well. I have recipes to save liked tweets and YouTube videos to an 'Internet' journal, and I'm planning to build more soon. If you use Day One and IFTTT, this is a fantastic addition.
This is an interesting idea by IFTTT: a Spotify channel to create automated recipes for the music service so you can connect it to other apps. Triggers include new saved tracks and tracks added to a playlist (the same are available as actions). I haven't kept my Spotify account since switching to Apple Music, but this is the kind of integration that likely won't ever come to Apple's service, and it seems like you can create some pretty cool recipes with it. Worth checking out if you're a Spotify user and are into web automation.
I recently decided that I wanted to overhaul the way I deal with email pitches (new apps, hardware accessories, web services, etc.) and I set out to find a solution that would allow me to broadcast an email to my team without having to forward more emails.
- Most email pitches are sent to my personal email address, which teammates can’t access;
- I can’t stop developers and PR people from sending messages to my personal address;
- I go through email every day, and I carefully handpick what I would like to see covered on MacStories;
- I used to forward every email to individual members of our team, duplicating attachments and using conversations as a tracking system to remember who’s interested in covering what;
- Inboxes got overcrowded, I couldn’t easily keep track of pitches assigned to someone else, and everybody was unhappy.
For years, I envisioned a system that, with one tap, would allow me to put an email message in a folder and forget about it, while it would still be broadcasted to my team so that others could take it into consideration. After weeks of experiments, I chose to leverage web automation and two tools I already use for todo management and team communication: Todoist and Slack.
The solution I landed on is remarkably simple, but it took a while to get it just right and work around a few unexpected bugs.
Since their release in February, IFTTT's Do apps have become some of my most used utilities for one-tap commands triggered from my iPhone. Today, IFTTT is extending the Do line to the iPad, and, more importantly, they're bringing the power of web automation to Apple Watch.
Popular web automation service IFTTT unveiled three new iPhone apps today, aimed at allowing users to set up their own custom shortcuts for notes, the camera, and buttons to quickly trigger recipes. The three apps, called Do Note, Do Camera, and Do Button, abstract some of the functionality from the full IFTTT service for a lightweight experience with an easier setup for popular use cases. According to the IFTTT website, the main IFTTT app will be renamed “If”.
The other day, Federico asked about why people use web services such as IFTTT. I have a few of these that I use frequently, but the geekiest one is this: controlling my Mac with my car.
More specifically, when I turn my car’s ignition on or off in the parking lot at my office, Automatic triggers an IFTTT recipe, creating a text file in a special Dropbox folder which is monitored by launchd and runs a shell script depending on which file is created.
It sounds more complicated than it is. No, really.
Reported last week, IFTTT has raised $30 million in funding. In the NYT article covering the news, Mike Isaac included a mention of paid features coming soon to the service:
The company also plans to soon introduce its first revenue streams, and will offer a paid version of its product for users who want to connect different accounts to the service. A social media manager for a company, for example, could connect multiple Twitter accounts to IFTTT and set up recipes specific to each account.
IFTTT has become a service that I rely upon for tasks that would waste several minutes every day. I archive my tweets in Evernote, receive notifications in Launch Center Pro, and save my sleep and weight logs using IFTTT. Paid accounts have been on the roadmap for years now, and I hope that what they're planning will generate enough revenue to be sustainable. It'd be a sad geek world without IFTTT.
Earlier this week, web automation service IFTTT launched a new Instapaper channel that, unlike the old one, contains a variety of triggers to send items from Instapaper to other channels.
After my recent return to Instapaper (which I’ll write about…someday), I already had a Launch Center Pro action that used IFTTT to save articles to read later, but the new triggers intrigued me, so I decided to try out a couple of additional recipes.