Mac automation is a huge topic that can be overwhelming. It can seem like there’s so much to learn, and it can be hard to decide which software will work best for your business. That’s where our team comes in! We’re excited to offer our readers an exhaustive guide on how to automate everything with the best software for mac. From email forwarding and scheduling to file management and more, we have you covered!
What is Mac Automation?
There are many different Mac Automation programs that can help you automate your work and life. The most popular ones include Macrium, Automator, and Aperture. Each of these programs can help you manage a variety of tasks, from printing to file sharing.
How Does Mac Automation Work
Mac automation works by first creating a basic automation script that your computer can use to do the work for you. This script can be stored on your computer or on an external drive. When you want to use the automation script, all you need to do is enter the steps required and the computer will take care of the rest.
How to Automate Your Mac
To start using Macromedia’s Automator program, open it up on your screen and click on the plus sign (+) at the top left corner of the main window. Then select New Item from the list at the bottom of the screen. Type in a name for your new automation andclick on Add ( horizontaly ). After adding your new automation, click on OK . You’ll now see a list of items in your automation folder . Click on one of them to start working with it .
Best Automation Software for Mac
Keyboard Maestro: Automate everything
It should come as no surprise that Keyboard Maestro is at the top of this list of the best automation apps. On a Mac, Keyboard Maestro is unquestionably king of automation. It is jam-packed with automation features, I tell you. Using Keyboard Maestro, you can:
- controlling your clipboard (and add new clipboards)
- Automatically type
- You can move the mouse.
- On your computer, click buttons.
- Run the program
- Organize your folders and files.
- Make automations based on dates and times.
- You can change keyboard shortcuts for individual apps or for your entire Mac.
- And a lot more, too!
TextExpander: Spend less time writing
TextExpander is up next. Being a writer who uses text expansion all day, I’m a little biased when it comes to this one.
For those who are unaware, text expansion occurs when a short phrase is replaced by a longer phrase when you type it. For instance, you could type “TE” to have “TextExpander” replaced, or “BT” to have “Bluetooth,” or even “! “for your email,” please.
You could even use a really long phrase in place of these short ones. For instance, each of my articles follows a similar format (Heading, intro, subheadings, conclusion). I just type “, then. template outline” and it is immediately changed to one.
There are many apps for this purpose, but TextExpander is one of the best (technically, Keyboard Maestro can do this, too, but that goes for most of the apps in this list). It not only offers quick and simple text expansion but is also loaded with other automated features that increase its effectiveness.
Let’s take the example of having to fill out several fields simultaneously. For instance, when writing an email, you must include the recipient, subject, and email content. TextExpander will fill out all three of them for you by automatically moving from one field to the next.
This can be used to copy data, create templates, sign documents, fill out web forms, and much more. incredibly helpful for writers and a game-changer for data entry workers.
Hazel: Automatically organize your Mac folders
Hazel is the third best automation app on our list. Even though Hazel is a little less well-known than the first two apps mentioned, every fan of automation should use it.
Hazel concentrates on managing files and folders. You can set rules based on the date items were created, where they were created, what they are titled, file and folder sizes, and more, similarly to creating rules to manage your email inbox.
You can do things like moving, renaming, deleting, tagging, moving to subfolders, monitoring your Trash, and more with these triggers in place. Even essential features like Spotlight and Music are integrated with Hazel.
Technically, you could use Keyboard Maestro or the Automator app that comes with macOS to accomplish this. But in my experience, Hazel is much more powerful and user-friendly. It’s one of those instances where “the right tool for the job” applies.
The only thing I don’t like about Hazel is how expensive it is. It has a hefty price tag of $42 for an app that mainly performs one trick. In spite of this, there aren’t many things that perform the task Hazel can if you can use it.
Alfred: An automated upgrade for Spotlight
Alfred is a much more well-known component of the top automation apps. This is probably your first experience with automation apps if you haven’t heard of Alfred.
Spotlight’s replacement is Alfred. It functions similarly to Spotlight in that you can type into it to quickly find programs, files, and folders on your computer.
What it does differently, though, is greatly expand the functionality of Spotlight. Additionally, it adapts the search results to you by using learning algorithms. Thus, Alfred will begin to piece that together and enhance your suggestions if you type “Photos” for the Photos app rather than Photoshop or Photo Booth.
Alfred is essentially an automation tool that starts routines and actions based on keywords. You can access the history of your clipboard, launch a search engine-queried tab, create and use automated workflows, play your music with a mini-player, perform calculations, launch shell commands, and carry out Mac actions like logging out.
When you put it all together, Alfred truly lives up to its reputation as a fantastic personal assistant. There is no reason not to switch to Alfred in its default configuration right away since it is free.
You must purchase the “Powerpack” upgrade if you want advanced features like automated workflows and clipboard history. But at $30, it’s not outrageously expensive for an app you’ll probably use every day.
BetterTouchTool: Take gestures to the next level with one of the best automation apps
BetterTouchTool is another well-liked app on this list of the top automation apps. Like Alfred, it enhances a feature on your Mac (gestures) that is already excellent.
More specifically, BetterTouchTool enables you to modify and create new custom gestures. You can extend the capabilities of gestures by using them to move windows or launch specific programs. Additionally, you can increase the number of gadgets that can use gestures on your Mac, such as an iPhone or Siri remote.
However, BetterTouchTool also gives users the option to use gestures to start processes and procedures. Compared to some of the other automation apps on this list, these are quite simple. However, it’s pretty cool that you can activate these with gestures.
Combining BetterTouchTool with a program like Keyboard Maestro makes it even more effective. You can create routines with Keyboard Maestro and then link those routines to unique hotkeys. In any case, you can map a hotkey to a gesture using BetterTouchTool.
Therefore, you could program Keyboard Maestro to run a routine whenever you press Command + Option + Shift + ;, and then program BetterTouchTool to execute that hotkey combination with a three-finger swipe. Simply swipe now to execute that command.
You can customize the TouchBar on your MacBook Pro among many other things with this app. It’s challenging to convey it fully in a few paragraphs. You can purchase it separately for $21 or as part of Setapp for $10/month.
Shortcat: Leave your mouse behind
In terms of my preferred automation apps, Keyboard Maestro is at the top of the list, followed by Shortcat. Despite the fact that it may not always make sense, I frequently use this because I adore it.
With the help of Shortcat, you can now click on Mac buttons by entering their names. For instance, by starting Shortcat, typing “like,” and then pressing return, you can like a YouTube video in Safari. Similar to Spotlight but with UI elements on the screen
By doing this, you can work without ever touching the mouse. There are occasionally apps that don’t work with Shortcat because they depend on accessibility features to function, in which case you will inevitably need to drag and drop. However, it usually enables you to operate computer actions without having to use your hands.
This is especially helpful to me for two reasons. One, if you type quickly, doing things this way actually speeds up a lot of tasks. I’ll use Alfred to open an app, Shortcat to navigate to my desired location, and a hotkey to return to the original app. It takes a little longer, but it also saves a lot of time.
I like to move around and find interesting places to type from because I spend my days sitting at a computer, which is the second reason I find Shortcat to be so helpful. I’ll move my keyboard over and write while standing, sitting, in my bed, or at the bar. I can’t use my mouse while I’m doing this. But with Shortcat, I don’t require it.
TextSoap: Fix common spelling mistakes instantly
TextSoap is a very straightforward automation solution and may be the most straightforward suggestion on this list. It cleans up your text, as the name suggests. That’s it, then!
Seriously. It only checks for simple spelling errors, and it also gets rid of extra characters, double spaces, capitalization errors, and other things. Even better, you can tailor TextSoap to search for particular errors you’re prone to making.
In other words, it increases the functionality of the built-in autocorrect feature on your computer. useful for almost everyone! It costs $50, but you can reduce that price by purchasing a $10/month subscription to Setapp. Along with a few of the other apps on this list, TextSoap is included.
Keysmith: An easier “automate everything” solution
By including Keysmith on this list of the top automation apps, I slightly violate the rules. It defies the rules because Keyboard Maestro is so similar to it that mentioning both of them would be pointless.
However, these two apps only appear to be very different from one another. Keyboard Maestro is blatantly complicated. You’ll need to put in some time learning it, but it’s not impossible. The interface and design language of Keyboard Maestro, another older app, still function well despite its age.
In contrast, Keysmith is a much simpler, more recent app. With its white space and streamlined UI elements, it appears as though it could run on an iPad or an iMac equally well.
Keysmith is also much easier to use than Keyboard Maestro. In comparison to Keyboard Maestro, a powerful RPA app, it is more like IFTTT.
It merits a spot on this list in my opinion because of these factors. Even though I view that location as a Keyboard Maestro substitute. Keysmith offers a simpler, easier to use alternative for users who find Keyboard Maestro to be intimidating, unclear, or out of date.
Dropover: Keep up with files, images, and more as you navigate your Mac
Dropover is at the tail end of this list. I impulsively downloaded the Dropover app for my Mac, and I now use it on a daily basis
Simply put, Dropover is a tiny “shelf” that overlays the current app you’re using. Links, text, images, files, folders, and more can all be moved into this shelf.
You can move this shelf around your Mac. You can then navigate between apps, web pages, and other things after loading it up with bits and pieces. Drag the items from your shelf into the app or website you’re on when you’re ready to use them.
Simply move the mouse to create a shelf! Immediately after it appears, you can begin dragging objects onto it.
This is incredibly helpful for sharing files with others, moving items and files between apps, and more. For custom actions and observe folders, you can even import AppleScript and Automator scripts into Dropover. I frequently use it as a productivity and automation tool.
Magnet: Automatically resize and snap windows on your Mac desktop
Magnet is the last app on our list of the top automation tools. Since the moment I realized macOS doesn’t automatically snap windows for you in the desktop, Magnet has been installed on my Mac. I’ve become so used to it that I almost forget that it’s not a part of macOS.
Magnet is a background application that snaps windows into place for you when you move them, for those of you who don’t have it yet. You can easily fill the right side of the screen with windows by dragging them there. The cardinal directions, corners, and other elements on your screen can all be used in the same way.
Hotkeys can also be added to Magnet. With a few keystrokes on your keyboard, you can move windows around your screen in that manner. Magnet also recognizes window borders, allowing you to snap objects in specific locations. There is no display that can’t be Magnetized because it supports up to six screens, including vertical displays.
Another essential app, once you download it you won’t be able to live without it.
How to Use Mac Automation.
The first step in automating everything on your MacBook is to create a default settings file. This file will contain the defaults for all of your Mac’s activities. To do this, you’ll need to open up System Preferences and then click on the Automation tab. In the next section, you’ll find a list of all of the automations that your computer can run. You can choose to have these automations run automatically based on certain conditions (like when you open a new document), or you can set them to run only when specific tasks are completed (like when you make an email).
Automate the Activities of Your Calendar
Next, you’ll need to create an activity schedule for your calendar. In System Preferences, click on the Keyboard tab and then click on Add New Schedule… In the resulting window, enter a name for your schedule and then select How often should this task be done? The default option is every day, but you can change this to any time interval that you want.
Automate the Operations of Your Webcam
You next need to add an automation for your webcam. This automation will allow you to automate how often and under what conditions it will start recording video footage from your webcam. To do this, open up System Preferences and click on Security & Privacy > Camera > Recording & Streaming > Cameras… Under Recording Mode, select Time-based Recording from the drop-down box and then OK . Under Streaming Mode, select Airplay from the drop-down box and then OK . Click OK to add your new webcam automation into System Preferences.
Automate the Operations of Your Keyboard
To automate keyboard operations, first open up System Preferences andclick on Keyboard > General . On the left side of this screen, you’ll find a list of all of the keyboard shortcuts that Apple has made available for Mac OS X 10_13 Lion . You can press these keys or use arrows Keys 1-9 in order to activate or deactivate those keys accordingly!
Tips for Automating Your Mac.
When automating the default settings of your photos, it’s important to consider what kind of images you want to automation. For example, if you want to automate photos of people, then you would need to create a group photo album and name it something like “People”. Then, in your photo album’s settings, add a check box for “Automatically add people in photos” and tick the box.
Similarly, if you want to automate photos of places or things, then you might want to add a location object to your photo album and name it something like “Place”. In your photo album’s settings, add a check box for “Automatically add places in photos” and tick the box.
Automate the Operations of Your Documents
If you have an email account and want to automatically send reminders when new emails arrive, then you can Automate these notifications by adding a check box for “Recieve email reminders from this account” and ticking the box. Similarly, if you want to automatically open attachments when you receive emails, then set up an attachment automator rule by adding a checkbox for “Open attachments automatically when received” and ticking the box.
Automate the Operations of Your System
You can also automate system operations by setting up rules that handle things like turning on or off power outlets or turning on or off devices in your home or office. You can also automate system tasks by setting up rules that deal with specific items such as turning on lights or music at night or opening certain files Telus has created for its customers (like movies). Finally, there are some general-purpose automation rules that can be applied to any computer task by adding a checkbox for “Do this task automatically every time I start my computer” and ticking the box.
Automate the Operations of Your Settings
You can also automatize settings by adding a rule that says after midnight every day turn on my computer so I can access my work email while I sleep (by checking the boxes next to each term), turns off my smart screen at bedtime (checking theboxes next to each term), deletes all old pictures from my digital camera before taking new ones (checking the boxes next to each term), sets up security passwords (checking boxes next to each word) and more!
Automating your Mac can make life a lot easier. By automating the default settings of your Mac, you can streamline your workflow and improve efficiency. Additionally, using Mac Automation can help you automate the activities of your calendar, webcam, keyboard, and systemsettings. If you’re looking for ways to automate your Mac beyond the defaults, be sure to check out our other articles in this series.