Here's a push for those new at Automator

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by slooksterPSV, Aug 1, 2005.

  1. slooksterPSV macrumors 68030

    slooksterPSV

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2004
    Location:
    Nowheresville
    #1
    OK, I'm going to teach you how to create a list of just MP3/any_other_music_format_file/etc.'s that you want using automator to search through your hard drive.
    1. Open Automator located in Applications on the Macintosh Hard Drive
    2. Click File->New
    3. Click Finder
    4. Drag and drop in order these commands:
    A Ask for Finder Items
    B Get Folder Contents
    C Filter Finder Items
    D New Text File
    ---NOTE: These are all located under Finder under Library->Applications Column
    5. Change type to Files
    ---Change location to wherever (even if its a share point, my music resides on a Windoze PC, so I got it from MUSIC (F) NOTE THE SHARE HAS TO BE MOUNTED TO CHOOSE A SHARE)
    ---Type in a prompt if you want to.
    ---Select allow multiple selection.
    6. In Get Folder Contents make sure Repeat for Each Sub Folder found, is checked.
    7. Next Filter Finder Items whose:
    ---Name Extension is mp3 (change the first box to Name Extension, type in mp3 in the second box) - click +
    ---Name Extension is file_extension_like_aiff_wma_etc - change that to whatever, or add more file types to search for
    8. New Text File - name it as Music.txt or whatever you want it to be named, save it anywhere, (like the desktop).
    9. Click Run
    10. Let it run, and Voila, you have an index of some music or whatever you filtered. change the extension, look for files and folders. Search for just exe's on a share, search for just txt files or whatever you want. Automator is awesome.

    Want another example? Sure why not:
    Remove New Text File with the x button in the corner, and add from iTunes, Add files to playlist - NOTE THIS WILL COPY EVERYTHING THAT YOU SEARCHED TO YOUR ITUNES MUSIC FOLDER - THIS IS ONLY RECOMMENDED IF YOU KNOW WHAT YOU ARE DOING!

    There are millions of combinations that you can do, with support for diff. apps. you can do so much more.
     
  2. pulsewidth947 macrumors 65816

    pulsewidth947

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2005
    Location:
    squarefrog.co.uk
    #2
    Great idea, thanks for that! Theres a lot of wasted potential with Automator.
     
  3. slooksterPSV thread starter macrumors 68030

    slooksterPSV

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2004
    Location:
    Nowheresville
    #3
    Actually, if anyone has a creation that they've made that they feel is really helpful, send it here.
     
  4. pulsewidth947 macrumors 65816

    pulsewidth947

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2005
    Location:
    squarefrog.co.uk
    #4
    Change case.

    Not incredibly difficult, but it just saved me hours of manual renaming. I love you Automator.

    1. Open Automator
    2. File > New
    3. click Automator > 'Ask for Confirmation'
    4. Label the confirmation action - Message - Change selected files? Explanation - This action will change the filename (including the extension) to lower case.
    5. Finder > Get Selected Finder Items
    6. Finder > Rename Finder Items (don't add the copy action)
    7. Under the Rename Folder Items, choose the following options: Change Case, Case: Lower, check include extension
    8. Thats it! Simply File > Save As Plug-In (for Finder)
    Now, next time you need to upload all your files to your *nix server select all your files and ctrl+click them. Choose Automator > Change Case and away you go :)

    I doubt anyone else will find this useful, but in case you do here you go!
     
  5. slooksterPSV thread starter macrumors 68030

    slooksterPSV

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2004
    Location:
    Nowheresville
    #5
    I need to use that one for the School's web page next year. I've told the students that they need to keep their pages as lowercase, cause its easier for browsers to find them. Like some won't load pages if the case isn't right ya know. That would be perfect! I had to manually do that with AppleScript last year.
     
  6. pulsewidth947 macrumors 65816

    pulsewidth947

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2005
    Location:
    squarefrog.co.uk
    #6
    Heh thats why I needed it :D. Simple yet effective.. but sadly one of the first things that I've wanted to make that has actually worked in Automator.
     
  7. slooksterPSV thread starter macrumors 68030

    slooksterPSV

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2004
    Location:
    Nowheresville
    #7
    Me: But slookster, aren't you a student yourself?

    Me2: Oh yeah, thats right, I guess because I'll be having the class do the work I want them to do, it makes me look like the teacher

    Me: Your a student who teaches your class, there you go.

    Me2: And its ok with my teacher too, he's actually having me Master the entire class.

    Me: Congrats!

    Me2: THank you, thank you.

    -- Sorry had to humor myself.
     
  8. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #8
    I guess I'm frustrated with Automator, because every time I think I think of something that it should be well-suited for, it doesn't seem capable of it.

    For instance, recently... I wanted to create compressed PDFs of a directory full of PPT files. This seems on the surface like something Automator should be very good at -- PDF creation is a system level feature, which is accessed in a completely standardized way. But there's no action to print files of all kinds, as far as I know, and the set of Powerpoint actions I've seen doesn't include one either. And finally, the Preview actions can manipulate the PDF but cannot go from PPT to PDF.

    And then PSE was completely incompatible with Automator, adding frustration.

    I guess eventually I'll find a use for it, but of all the Tiger features, so far, I'm excited but incredibly frustrated with Automator, and I haven't found any way to do anything useful to myself with it....
     
  9. hansen macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2004
    Location:
    Denmark
    #9
    Anyway I can add spotlight keywords to emails in Mail and use them in Automator?
     
  10. pulsewidth947 macrumors 65816

    pulsewidth947

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2005
    Location:
    squarefrog.co.uk
    #10
    I hear that. Its limitation is not supporting programs without third-party plugins. To combat that you CAN use AppleScript if you are confident enough, theres not a lot you can't accomplish with AppleScript.

    I managed to find lots of Automator plugins for Photoshop - maybe they'll work with Elements?

    You might want to look into printer droplets. I saw someone using one at work and they look like they could be worth mentioning. In theory I cant see why you cant modify them to print to pdf instead of paper. Then you could just drop your PPT's onto it and wait for the pdfs.. Unless it doesnt work like that :D
     
  11. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #11
    Thanks for the suggestions... the printer droplets do sound like a good idea.... I know that you used to be able, in some operating systems, to create an Acrobat printer and then drag files to it to make PDFs.... Maybe there's something like that.

    I think the reason PSE doesn't work is because it doesn't support AppleScript. The PS/CS Automator actions don't support PSE. *sigh* Well, considering how much of what I need that I can do with PSE, I think I can live... it's better than paying for PS/CS! :eek:
     

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