what kinds of things do you all use automator for?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by MUCKYFINGERS, Aug 30, 2005.

  1. MUCKYFINGERS macrumors 6502a

    MUCKYFINGERS

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2005
    Location:
    CA
    #1
    i've had my ibook for a month now and still don't really have any ideas on what to use it for. any suggestions or personal experiences?
     
  2. Jay42 macrumors 65816

    Jay42

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2005
    #2
    Yeah, I've never opened it actually, but I am curious. I understand what it does, and vaguely how to use it, but I can't think of any real world applications. Probably a lot of stuff having to do with photos.
     
  3. Applespider macrumors G4

    Applespider

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2004
    Location:
    looking through rose-tinted spectacles...
    #3
    I've got two workflows that find and copy files out of iTunes/iPhoto respectively and save them to my desktop without me having to open either application - makes it much easier if I want to tinker with the file in another application without wrecking the original.

    I've got a one to convert image files to different types and resize the image.

    I've got one for renaming several files more quickly as a Finder plug in. I've also got one that renames images and imports them straight into iPhoto which I use when importing images from my camera through Image Capture since it allows me to have filename like 'Birthday 001' etc rather than DSC23445.jpg

    And lastly, I've got one that iCal runs every morning at 8am and sends out a birthday message to anyone whose birthday it is that day.

    I've also set up a few temporary ones to pull down files from the web and save them in appropriate places or to remove strange characters from file names etc.
     
  4. mcmillan macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    #4
    I use it to quickly convert or resize pictures. Nothing else, I haven't really found any useful workflows.
     
  5. Heb1228 macrumors 68020

    Heb1228

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2004
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    #5
    Can you post the one you use for image renaming? Posting it in a zip file is the best way to do it on the forums.

    I started this same thread basically a few days ago... here it is...
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=145869
     
  6. PlaceofDis macrumors Core

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    #6
    Applespider, does the image resize one change actual dimensions of the picture, or do you mean file size? if it is either would you mind sharing?
     
  7. Mitthrawnuruodo Moderator emeritus

    Mitthrawnuruodo

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Location:
    Bergen, Norway
    #7
    Don't use it too much but I have a Zip & Mail Finder plugin, that lets me compress a number of files and attach the archive to a new mail message. Then I have one plugin that renames some ics files, which for some reason OS X insists on naming vcs, thus making iCal reject them, back to ics and add them to iCal.

    I also made a test that will open iTunes and start my favorite playlist (as an answer to a question here at MR), but I've never actually used that one. ;)
     
  8. decksnap macrumors 68040

    decksnap

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2003
    #8
    Same as Applespider- I use one finder plug-in to batch rename a selected group, batch add spotlight comments, and then add to iPhoto.

    I haven't built this one yet, but just glancing at the actions, I love the idea of taking a bunch of images and automatically generating a PDF contact sheet.

    Or even the 'combine PDF pages' action would probably be useful.
     
  9. decksnap macrumors 68040

    decksnap

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2003
    #9
    OK- I just tried the 'make contact sheet' thing and it's slick. I can see myself using that a lot.
     
  10. hyperpasta macrumors 6502a

    hyperpasta

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2005
    Location:
    New Jersey
    #10
    Automator was the big dissapointment in Tiger

    Automator is the one feature that didn't live up to the hype. It's slow and useful noly in special situations.
     
  11. TEG macrumors 604

    TEG

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2002
    Location:
    Langley, Washington
    #11
    I was creating a bunch of images in Appleworks for the Washington State Highways Wikipedia Project, and saving them as gif's through Preview. However thanks to preview's very poor Save Dialog (i.e. it does not remember the last place you saved), I used automator to save me time.

    I'd save the images in Documents, with the name being the route number, then run my automated task to add the "WA-" to the front and move them to a folder in the Pictures folder. It was nice.

    I'd like to see Automator be able to take arguements like a script for renaming. Because, I organize my Music Video Collection by song title, and when I get them they are Artist first. I'd like to have an automator task that switches the title and artist around the "-" and remove anything in "()". But alas I'm doing it by hand, because I don't feel like writing the script.

    TEG
     
  12. Heb1228 macrumors 68020

    Heb1228

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    Feb 3, 2004
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    #12
    Why don't you post it on here for others to try?
     
  13. Heb1228 macrumors 68020

    Heb1228

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2004
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    #13
    I think it can be very useful, when used properly. The program itself may not be that fast, but when you make plugins for different apps it can be very useful. I just think most people haven't realized how to use it yet.
     
  14. hayduke macrumors 65816

    hayduke

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2005
    Location:
    is a state of mind.
    #14
    As a launcher...

    I have very few application set to launch at login because I find it very frustrating to wait for things to launch when you are trouble shooting, rebooting, etc. I've written an Automator script that launches a specific set of applications. That way I can launch my work applications when I'm at work and my home applications if I'm at home. It's not a huge time saver, but launching a single "app" does streamline things.
     
  15. Lacero macrumors 604

    Lacero

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2005
    #15
    Automated batch downloading of pr0n. Trying to fill 250GB is no easy task.
     
  16. QCassidy352 macrumors G3

    QCassidy352

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2003
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #16
    rofl! I guess someone had to say it... :p
     
  17. Applespider macrumors G4

    Applespider

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2004
    Location:
    looking through rose-tinted spectacles...
    #17
    I'll post the image renaming mini-app later when I'm back at my Mac. It's stored as an app so that Image Capture can automatically act on it - ie download these images and then do x to them.

    The image resize does both - it changes the dimensions of the image and the file size although it doesn't get it quite so small as Photoshop does. Dimensions wise, I have it set to ask me what pixel size I want when it runs although you can set it up to have it a fixed size each time. It will run the pixel size along the largest edge.

    I can share that too - I'll write something up that will allow people to follow through what they're doing so that if people want to tweak them, they can rebuild them for what they want.
     
  18. snickelfritz macrumors 65816

    snickelfritz

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2003
    Location:
    Tucson AZ
    #18
    Here's set of Finder Plugins I use fairly often.
    The FTP plugin is particularly nice for quickly uploading files.
    [​IMG]
     
  19. decksnap macrumors 68040

    decksnap

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2003
    #19
    Because it's just one action, not a bunch of actions strung together. It's the 'make contact sheet' action under PDF, or preview, or whatever. (I'm not on that computer right now) I just saved it as a workflow and it is in my finder right-click menu now. (Still a little confused about this part though- where it saves and why, the difference of workflow/plug-in, etc.) I'm still kind of a newb at automator but so far I have nothing bad to say about it except it takes six bounces on a dual 2.3 to launch.
     
  20. ldurden macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2008
    #20
    hayduke how do you do this?

    I would like to do this same thing... I want to click one file and it open every app I use for the day at work and also put them in the appropriate Spaces I predefine (under Leopard).

    Thank you for your time in advanced.

    l.durden™ :apple:
     
  21. heatmiser macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2007
    #21
    Azureus downloads torrent files to my desktop. I couldn't find a way to have the program eat them afterward (the way Transmission does), so I wrote a script in Automator to delete torrent files after my confirmation. I need to tweak it some more (it pops up whenever non-torrents appear on the desktop as well), but it gets the job done without much hassle.
     
  22. Mydel macrumors 6502a

    Mydel

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2006
    Location:
    Sometimes here mostly there
    #22
    Yeah its one of those applications I dont really use. Its got potential but I've never had time to get into it. Frankly Im not sure if I was using it correctly. But I believe with time it will be more and more popular.
     
  23. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2005
    Location:
    5045 feet above sea level
    #23
    eh i dunno. this thread is over 2 years old and people still dont know how to use it really
     
  24. iSaint macrumors 603

    iSaint

    Joined:
    May 26, 2004
    Location:
    South Mississippi y'all, near the water!
    #24
    After being a Mac user for nearly four years, I finally opened Automator up to change dimensions of some photos. The idea is to create an ideal size for a digital photo frame. It was handy because it completed the task of changing 200 pics in a matter of minutes. It also helped by suggesting it add a workflow to make a copy of chosen pics before changing them.

    There are many other workflows set up in the program that are fun to check out.

    Hah! I missed that!
     
  25. DaveF macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2007
    Location:
    NoVA
    #25
    I wrote a Workflow to pre-process video files:

    * Copy MPG files from my digital camera
    * Convert them to H.264 with MPEG StreamClip
    * Import them into iMovie 08
     

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