Greg Morris

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    Shortcuts To Use With

    Several people still point to my older post on how I post to my blog using automation. Unfortunately, some of these Shortcuts no longer work or can be done better, so I decided to update them. Here’s all the Shortcuts I use to publish and use to help you automate your life. Post Search

    I love linking my posts together and making sure I reference and expand on previous thoughts. The easiest way to do this is to search on for the old posts, and you can do this with one tap.

    Grab the Shortcut here, and change the text to your account ID number found by doing a post search and getting the numbers after /posts/and before ?q.

    Image Upload

    For those that include images in your posts and want to upload them beforehand, they usually lean on Mimi uploader. An excellent third-party app that helps you do this with one image or full albums of them. However, this Shortcut will do all that for you if you do not need the graphical front end.

    Grab it here and place your app token in the top text box. Once run, this will ask you to select the images you want to upload and then ask of the alt text of them. Once done, you will have the Markdown syntax for all of your images copied to your clipboard.

    Post To Microblog

    This basic Shortcut forms the backbone of other ones I have built for my posting style. However, it comes in very useful if you want to post from apps that don’t support publishing to So, you can turn your simple text editor of choice into a publishing app by sharing the text to this Shortcut.

    Life Update

    For the last few weeks, I’ve been using this updated version instead of my Shortcut with all the updates of my life. Mine is a pretty boring one, but the Shortcut has allowed me to post things effortlessly.

    Grab it here

    I made this modular this time so that other Shortcuts I made can be used. This makes both making the Shortcut and understand what is going on easier. You will need the image upload shortcut, the post to shortcut and the status Shortcut shown above.

    Once saved to my Homescreen I can post a feeting status or a more permanent post to I use this multiple times a day to share micro posts and some of my photography.

    Shortcut: Find Mastodon User On

    I still can’t decide where I want to put my time. Do I follow mastodon users on or follow users on Mastodon? At the minute I’m doing both, and thankfully it’s straightforward to find any ActivityPub users on Even easier with the handy Shortcut!

    Grab it here

    All you have to do is find the user’s account and run the Shortcut. You need to highlight the user’s account address in Safari and share the webpage to the Shortcut. This is especially handy for people with a complicated instance address. If this isn’t possible, just type (or paste) in the handle when asked.

    The Shortcut will then convert the address to the correct format and search From there you can follow the account easily, just make sure you’re signed in. All of your accounts in one place, like magic. That’s interoperability for you!


    Undoubtedly, the biggest thing I was looking forward to with the macOS Monterey update was Shortcuts. It promises to be the final piece in automating the Apple universe. Admittedly, it is a bit hit-and-miss, feeling as if it’s still in beta, but most things work well. My favourite part is pinning Shortcuts to the menu bar, and this is my favourite one.

    In creating this Shortcut, I took inspiration from Gabrizio Rinaldi’s version that I found via The Birchtree Bark Newsletter. However, I wasn’t happy with just starting the screensaver. This is fine if you are working from home, but I work in an office and regulations dictate my workstation must be locked when I am not at it. This took a bit of work as older versions made for Automator no longer work, but step forward some simple Apple script to save the day.

    Grab it

    This small shortcut will quit all apps, put the volume down to 0 (no one wants to hear your Mac pinging when you’re at home) and also lock your Mac. You can leave some apps running if you need to by customising the first step in the Shortcut. All you need to do is click on ‘choose’ and select any apps you want to keep running.

    You will need to give Shortcuts permission to run scripts. Also make sure this is pinned to the menu bar as if you try to run it from within Shortcuts the last part will not work as the app has been killed halfway through!

    You are welcome to add in other automations on the end of this, like Gabrizio did, such as switching off HomeKit enabled lights or putting the heating up a bit for when you get home. I debated playing a sound clip to signal me clocking out, but I might use this a few times a day so I didn’t want to annoy myself! It would be great to see what you do, so let me know.

    Update: Slight tweek to make sure the whole script can run.

    Shortcut: Things Attachments Using Bear

    I’ve made no secret that I have been crying out for the ability to add attachment to Things 3. I love the app but this is the only thing that is keeping me using Todoistfor work related reminders. I have tried loads of different options and work arounds, been helped out along the way, but could never find something good enough. This isn’t perfect but the best way is to use Bear to add files as attachments to Things.

    Bear has a great implementation of file attachments to notes, you can clip pretty much anything you wish. The app will then show file links inline, allowing for other notes and attachments to be placed as desired. Thanks to the developers love of URL schemes you can then link to the note from Things. You can do all this manually but you came here for the Workflow!

    2018 05 15 workflow things attachments 1Download the Workflow

    This can be run from the today widget, provides the file picker, and once you’ve decided on your attachment it gets to work. The file name will be used for a note in Bear, and of course an item in Things with a link back to the note.

    Despite the need for a work around it actually allows you to clip a few attachments and also make notes alongside for a pretty great experience. I have my fingers crossed for Cultured Code to add in attachments, but they seem adverse to adopting the feature.

    Check out some of my other Workflows I have shared over time, these are steadily increasing as I find and make more. If you need any help or want to try and achieve something with Workflow head over to the subreddit and ask away.

    Shortcut: Bear And Things For Ideas

    This is becoming a bit of a regular occurrence, I’m on a roll creating Workflows to make my writing easier. This latest one uses my new todo app Things and my favourite notes app Bear to make sure I catch all the ideas I have for blog posts.

    Thats not to say it can’t be used for other things, reminders that you need to add a lot of text in. An idea you need to expand on later, whatever it is this Workflow will make sure you don’t forget about it.

    2018 03 13 workflow idea screenshots 1Download the Workflow.

    Once you’ve downloaded the Workflow obviously you will need Bear Notes app. If you’re unsure on what it is and if it’s worthwhile check out my review first. Unless you want to sync between devices or export in PDF the app is completely free. Don’t forget to grant access to Bear in Workflow before you try and run it!

    The Workflow will ask you for a title for your idea, and then for any extra notes you want to add. Once these are added it will create a new Bear note with your idea title and notes, then create a new Things todo with the same title. In the Things item there will be a link to the Bear note and also a reminder set for this evening.

    You can of course remove the reminder but I find it really handy to set one for later on so I can flesh out the idea further and most importantly I don’t forget about it!

    The Workflow takes full advantage of the new automation and URL scheme added into the 3.4 update. For extra customisation you can edit the URL at the bottom with all sorts of extras. For hints and tips how to do this check out the link builder on the Things support page.