I love the little ‘sock’ the new Watch comes in.
I love the little ‘sock’ the new Watch comes in.
It’s a bit delayed (sorry), but episode 11 of Upload has been … Uploaded! This week I talk briefly about Shortcuts, Apple goodies and Nintendo’s online service: itunes.apple.com/gb/podcas… / andynicolaides.com/podcast
if you have any comments about rhe show, please let me know via firstname.lastname@example.org
Ultimately, the Shortcuts app is what automation should stand for: empowering people to think, build tools to solve problems, and control a computer however they want, whenever they want.
I couldn’t agree more with this closing statement from Federico’s fantastic iOS 12 review. Shortcuts in iOS 12 really is a game changer, and one that I’m all in on.
My favourite feature that Apple introduced us to at WWDC this year was, far and away, Shortcuts. I’ve not left the app since it was released to the public on Monday. Workflow never really clicked for me, so I had assumed Shortcuts would be the same. This time, however, I made a concerted effort to really dig in properly and I realised very quickly it’s far more intuitive than it seems at first.
I’ve been meaning to (threatening to) start doing a few more regular posts here to share some ideas that I’ve either created myself, or to highlight some creations I’ve found around the web. This, unfortunately, isn’t that …
I did, however, think it may be useful to share a couple of small tips I’ve found really help when you start trying to build some more complex Shortucts.
As you start to get more confident with Shortcuts, you’ll want to start building more and more complex flows. If you’ve seen, or tried to create, any of the popular morning routine type Shortcuts you’ll see what I mean. Something that really helps with this, however, is nesting your Shortcuts within each other.
Nesting involves creating a small component of your Shortcut as a standalone element, and then creating a master Shortcut that will pull in your seperate sub Shortcuts. An example of this can be seen here:
Each of the referenced Shortcuts are quite long, at times, but very managable as a single entity. When you add them into an overall master Shortcut, however, everything is far more managable.
I’ve the last few weeks I’ve accrued about 200ish Shortcuts, all with different colours and Glyphs. It’s a mess in there! When I have a few minutes in the evening I’m taking a few minutes to review these to tidy them up, colour code and update the glphys to something more logical.
Something that may also be useful, which I’m also doing, is for you to ‘tag’ your Shortcuts. If you add a ‘Comment’ step to your Shortcut and then add something like #Automation you can then search for grouped / similarly tagged Shortcuts via … another Shortcut.
Here’s a Shortcut that can search for your tags, once setup.
Watch this space for more Shortcuts related goodness soon!
Thoughtful #shotoniphone #portraitmode #blackandwhite #beach
Yes, okay, I’m extremely sad and I’m planning out some Shortcuts I plan to try making on Monday when iOS 12 and Shortcuts launch …
I’m really looking forward to getting my hands on the the Shortcuts app, finally, when iOS 12 launches on Monday. Automation on iOS is going to be pretty huge in the coming months, I would assume.
The latest episode of my podcast, Upload dug into this a little, at a very high level initially, if you’re interested in hearing a little more about what options you have already on this front.
I reference this in the podcast itself, but this series will likely work better as a blog post, ratherh than a podcast, so I will be doing some more detailed iOS Automation posts here over the comings weeks / months.
Currently reading: The Shining by Stephen King 📚
Well, another Apple event is upon us and, once again, Apple themselves are (sort of) the cause of their own leaks. The entire phone lineup names have been leaked. If ‘iPhone XR’, ‘iPhone XS’ and ‘iPhone XS Max’ are the best their marketing team could come up with, they really should be ashamed. Even Max vs Plus is an odd decision, given there is already a brand of ‘Plus’. Apple’s presentations can usually sell ice to eskimos, so it’ll be interesting to see how they spin it in a few hours.
Coffee always available at home ☕️
Ever since I switched to an iPad as my primary computer, some time in 2014 (with the Air 2), iOS has been getting more and more powerful. Some power apps such as Drafts, Launch Center Pro and Workflow have really cemented the OS as a bit of a powerhouse, in the right hands that is …
Over the last few months I’ve been building up a bit of an arsenal of powerful automations and tweaks, powered by the apps mentioned above, and some others that I will get to at a later date. It’s got me even more excited about a platform that I am already 100% behind and invested in. So much so that I wanted to start putting together some posts about the various setups and tweaks I have currently. I should take this opportunity to caveat that many of the actions and automations I’m going to discuss on this blog over the coming weeks have either been created by other (far smarter) people or are based on others code that I’ve since copied and modified. I will, of course, detail who created the originals or what site I may have found the inspiration from as I go along.
These posts will be broken down into the following areas:
This is, in all likelihood, the order they’ll be posted in as well so keep an eye out over the coming days for the Scriptable post and I hope you enjoy the series!
Finished reading: 11.22.63 by Stephen King 📚
In this weeks episode of my podcast, Upload, I take my new podcasting setup for a spin (with varying levels of success), discuss some Apple leaks and debut a new section of the podcast which will be sure to switch things up
My Micro Monday recommendation this week is @ChrisJWilson.
My Roomba got stuck on a bit of a door mat. I think we have a bit of time before robots take over the world … it’s a bit melodramatic as well …
Ultimate laziness achieved
What a sad sack this 🐶 is!
I’m not going to get concerned with listener counts on my little podcast 🎙️, because it’s a bit of fun / a hobby more than anything, but did give the stats on Podbean a little nose. This is about 232 more listens than I ever expected! Thanks for anyone that’s given some a try!
And this was a good night 😑
The first part of my new podcast setup arrived from Amazon yesterday. I hope all this stuff can still hook up to my iPad Pro, or this is all going to be a complete waste of time …
In this weeks episode I discuss some expectations for the upcoming Apple event in a week or two, and try to prepare myself mentally and physically to spend a shed load of money on shiny new toys I don’t need.
Please feel free to get in touch regarding any comments to this or any other show via email.
Thanks for listening!
I have a problem … it’s the most pointless and unimportant problem to have, but I have it non the less. My problem is homescreens. I go to great lengths, on occasion, to setup my iPhone X homescreen in a nice, colour coordinated way. I spend far too long on this, but the results are usually pretty decent.
The iPad, however, has always been another kettle of fish entirely! It’s near impossible to set up an iPad homescreen to be near, functional and also to work in portrait and landscape orientation. Usually, this is a page of work apps and then a page of play apps, along with a few folders when needed.
Since iOS 11, and the introduction of the new multitasking system, unless your app is in the dock, which can only hold a fixed amount of apps (which varies between iPad sizes) you have to return to the homescreen, scroll around, and then launch your app. This can be a huge pain and take you out of your workflow.
This is an example of what my homescreen used to look like on my iPad Pro 10.5”
I find this setup slow to navigate, distracting to look at and just impractical. After a bit of playing around, I came across my ideal setup. My iPad Pro now looks like this:
Firstly, this is obviously far cleaner and less distracting to the eye. I have my main multitasking apps in the dock, and then every other app sits in the folder at the far right. My navigation workflow is now much faster. If I need an app that’s not in my dock I no longer need to go back to the homescreen and then scroll / swipe through page after pages of cluttered screens to find what I want. I now just use the keyboard shortcut to return to the homescreen, another to launch Spotlight, type the name of the app I want (or even just the start of the name) move down to it (via the arrow keys) and select the app with enter to fire it up. My fingers never have to even leave the keyboard.
When I shared this on Twitter I received a bit of a push back. Firstly, I couldn’t care less. You do you, but anyone that disagrees with this should at least try it. If you still don’t like it, that’s fair enough. Horses for courses. Right now, how we, this is certainly the horse for this course!
A few weeks ago I receieved a pretty random sounding Twitter DM from someone claiming to be from the Wall Street Journal, saying she wanted to write a story and wanted some input from me. This seemed a bit off for me, but I looked at her profile and it appears she sent something similar to quite a few people.
The reporter was replying to a tweet I sent over 300 days ago, but I went along for the ride, assuming it was a random trolling, but it turns out it wasn’t!
The article went live in the Wall Street Journal Tech section this morning. Unless you’re a paying subscriber to the Wall Street Journal, you wont be able to read it, unfortuantely. I found a Workflow (that I wont link to here, but I’m sure you can find it) that can bypass the paywall so I could give it a read myself. It’s a very tongue in cheeky article, which was explained before, so I wont along with that premise. My small quote / inclusion in the article can be found in the attached image.