Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Automating 2014

At the beginning of the year, I saw a Facebook post from a friend that mentioned putting little pieces of paper in a jar with thoughts and memories for each day of the year.  At the end of 2014 you would take them out and read them for a look back at your year.

23 Reasons

I am not very interested in keeping little pieces of paper in a jar for a whole year so I thought about a different way of doing this project that was simpler and automated.  Enter Evernote (whose motto is Remember Everything) and IFTTT (If This Then That).

Since I tend to put random thoughts and events from my life on Facebook, I created IFTTT recipes that would  append a note to essentially create a Facebook history in Evernote.  Automatically.

If you have never used IFTTT you should give it a try.  It has connections to over a 100 services and it is easy to use.  All you do is create a recipe to get started:

IFTTT Screenshot

You can see in the above example that this particular recipe has triggered 29 times.  All I have to do is make the post in Facebook and it is automatically sent to Evernote without any further actions on my part.  I have a similar recipe for photo posts and for links that I share with friends.  It has worked quite nicely and I will end up with a complete summary for the year.

On a side note, Facebook has "Year in Review" but it filters based on Facebook's criteria and I wasn't satisfied with what I got for 2013.  I am interested in getting a complete list of all things that I posted. I have been happy with the results so far and look forward to looking back at 2014.

Photo Credit:  23 Reasons by Shawn McCullough used under Creative Commons