I first looked at IFTTT – ‘If This, Then That’ when a fantastic plugin I used called ’LinkedIn Include’ – which pulled your articles (not your profile or stream) from LinkedIn onto your WordPress site – was eventually blocked by LinkedIn (hey –ho!).

I discovered that IFTTT is quite frankly – brilliant!

IFTTT has a bank of prepared ‘Recipes’ you can use, or you can make your own. A Recipe is a connection between products or Apps. Recipes come in two types: DO and IF. DO Recipes run on your device triggered by personalized button – you can do things like; trigger a call to get you out of a meeting (US only); email someone to let them know you are on your way home; turn up the heating for when you get home! IF Recipes run automatically in the background and are connections between Apps, If this (ie a Twitter action), then that (ie a Dropbox action).

I wanted to do more on Instagram, and I’m not a great self publicist, but I am working on a long-term project for myself I’ve called #treetwoproject so that seemed the perfect way for me to use IFTTT. So I take a picture of a wonderful Oak tree on my morning walk – which I will eventually present animating to show how the countryside in that snapshot changes. From Instagram I run three IFTTT ‘Recipes’, one posts the picture I have taken as a native Twitter image (everyone should do this), one sends the posted image to my Dropbox, the last puts it onto Pinterest (this one is a bit flaky).

OK – that’s good, but what else can it do?

Well, pretty much anything when you have two Apps that are connected to you!

For example in your home you can:

  • Talk to your iRobot Roomba – hoover the lounge please!
  • Turn off the heating
  • Turn on the lights
  • Wake up! Unmute your ringer in the morning

For work you can:

  • News – get alerts on trends, collect it, email it, send it to Slack …
  • Collect Tweets or blog posts from a particular user to a Google spreadsheet
  • Set up a Twitter search for key phrases like ‘I need a graphic designer’
  • Send an Instagram post as a native Tweet (my #treetwoproject)
  • Google Calendar appointments can be sent as text alerts
  • If you are following a particular hashtag, when it’s used, have that user added to a Twitter list
  • Send your WordPress posts to LinkedIn
  • Create scheduled and recurring Trello cards

It’s a bit like a little bit of AI in your life!