An Introduction To Shortcuts On The Mac

The new Shortcuts app in macOS Monterey introduces a whole new world of power automation to the Mac. You can build Shortcuts from actions that control your Mac and apps. Apple includes a gallery of sample Shortcuts for you to use and learn from. Making your own is easy for those with some programming experience.

Comments: 20 Responses to “An Introduction To Shortcuts On The Mac”

    TimA
    1 year ago

    Unfortunate name as it is widely used for other prior functions, e.g. cheatsheets, System/Keyboard/Shortcuts.
    Besides sharing a link to a Shortcut and the gallery Apple provides, are there third party websites for Shortcuts people have made and that can be downloaded?

    nick
    1 year ago

    hey Gary, as I see from your example, the order doesn't seem to matter, but I would have guessed that Open Mail and Open Safari would have come before Quit All Apps except Mail and Safari.

    Razvan Mihai
    1 year ago

    Thanks again, Gary. Shortcuts promise to be a game-changer indeed. I was wondering if a shortcut created on Mac using Applescript would work on iPhone.

    I have an apple script that allows me to copy the deep link of an email and then paste it to wherever I want. I am aware there are alternatives to this on mac and iPad involving dragging and dropping, but I could not figure out a way to do that on iPhone.

    1 year ago

    Razvan: Nope. There is no AppleScript on the iPhone so that would be a Mac-only Shortcut.

    Razvan Mihai
    1 year ago

    What about Javascript or Swift. Apple website shows some examples on how to use javascript for shortcuts in connection with Safari actions. I wonder if we can use Javascript or Swift for tasks such as getting the deep link of an email. Thanks!

    1 year ago

    Razvan: Shortcuts lets you use JavaScript (not Swift though). You might be able to do it in JavaScript if you can figure out the deep link part. You'd just have to work at it and see.

    Kathy
    1 year ago

    Hi Gary, thanks for your amazing videos and tips. I tried using the self destructing clipboard shortcut but it doesn't seem to work...it's set at 6 min and I don't think I have to add anything to it other than just to run it. I'm sure I'm missing something. Thanks in advance

    Phyllis Steele
    1 year ago

    I followed your directions and did a simple close all apps shortcut and pinned it in the menu bar. Really nice. It would be one step easier if the shortcut alone could be pinned in the menu bar, so it would be a one step selection.

    Fred
    1 year ago

    I agree with TimA regarding the name Shortcuts, search Google for sample is a nightmare right now. I'll try to find a forum somewhere. It is a game changer. I wanted to love Applescripts but even for a programmer I found it not very friendly and code wouldn't always work consistently, but that's just my experience

    Roman Tirler
    1 year ago

    Hi Gary,
    Let me say, I liked yoyur intro to Shortcuts on macOS Monterey. I tried to run your shortcut 'New note with Date, however, the 'Append to Note' does not work in my case (fom web I can see I am not the only one with this problem). I get the following error message: 'Please pass a node to the the Append to Note action.' In my case: Append Provided Input to Note', Note is a not an a ction as in your case.
    I am running 12.1 beta.
    Any ideas?
    Thanks, Roman

    1 year ago

    Roman: Do you see a line from the Ask For action above to the Append action below? If you don't see a line, then select where the Provided Input should be in the Append action and use Clear to clear it. Then Control+click it and select Insert Magic Variable and then click on Provided Input between the two. This should re-establish the line.

    William Braun
    1 year ago

    Gary,

    I tried and like the Shortcut you showed us on "Split Screen 2 Apps" It works however occasionally I get a warning window that says: The "Split Screen 2 Apps" service could not be used." It gives me two options: "OK" or "Show Application ". I believe I followed your demo exactly, but wonder why this is happening. Any ideas?

    1 year ago

    William: Hard for me to say. Are the two apps the same? Are the windows in those apps showing the same things? Split View only works if the app supports it, and also if the content in the window can be resized to fit in that space.

    William braun
    1 year ago

    Gary - On the Split Screen 2 App Shortcut. What should the first blank in the "Receive" say? Should it say "NO?"

    I am using it for Apple Mail and Safari in this shortcut for split-screen sharing.

    1 year ago

    William: Not following you. I don't show it being used like that here. If you set it up as a Service, you wouldn't want it to receive anything.

    Lee Warner
    12 months ago

    I'm trying something very simple as my first shortcut. I want to open Terminal and then insert a set command such as the text string of "NetworkQuality" and hit return. I'm having difficulty discovering how to insert the text string. Can you offer any guidance please?

    12 months ago

    Lee: You can't control another app quite like that. Instead of opening Terminal at all, just use the Run Shell Script action in Shortcuts and do it right in Shortcuts.

    Chris Klemmer
    8 months ago

    Please provide more programming on creating macOS Shortcuts. After watching this video a few times I was able to write a simple script to convert many JPGs to PDFs, a huge time saver. It has been a long time since I have done coding and Shortcuts appears to have a lot more potential than I currently realize. Thanks.

    Reg Grayston
    4 months ago

    Hi Gary - great content as always. Quick question, is there a method to import this New Text File automator script into a shortcut in Monterey? I attempted this but get an error "The Automator workflow could not be imported because there was a problem with the action “New Text File”". Any thoughts? Thanks

    4 months ago

    Reg: Not sure what the issue could be, but you can always just create a Shortcut and then add an AppleScript action and paste the AppleScript right in (I'm assuming it is AppleScript, right?) Otherwise, try building what you want directly in Shortcuts.

Comments Closed.