How to fake Finder Quick Actions on older Macs

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Finder quick actions
Who doesn't love the Finder?
Photo: Cult of Mac

MacOS Mojave and Catalina both have Finder Quick Actions. These are buttons that sit in the preview panel of any file, and let you perform quick actions of the selected file with one click. Actions vary depending on whether you’ve selected an image, a video, and so on. The defaults let you rotate images, crop video, and turn most other things into PDFs. You can also add your own Quick Actions, using Automator.

But what about Macs running macOS High Sierra or earlier? Can you add Quick Actions? The answer is yes, kinda.

How to add a Dark Mode toggle to the MacBook Pro’s Touch Bar

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The homemade Dark Mode button lets you toggle between Dark Mode and the MacBook Pro's regular appearance, right from your Touch Bar.
The homemade Dark Mode button.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

The Mac’s Dark Mode isn’t bad. It’s definitely a better view when quickly checking something on your Mac late in the evening. But unless you have it set to switch automatically, toggling Dark Mode on and off is a pain. So, with a shiny new MacBook Pro in front of me, I decided to put the Touch Bar to use.

Did you know you can add your own buttons to the Touch Bar? You can, and it’s totally rad.

How to automatically import new music into iTunes

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iTunes on Mac
Use an Automator workflow and never manually add media to iTunes again!
Photo: Apple

So, say you have a Dropbox folder that keeps your media files synced across all your machines. Wouldn’t it be super-convenient to have iTunes import music from the Dropbox folder automatically? Also, just double-clicking the media files to import them to iTunes doesn’t sound too much work at first, but, what if your files are scattered all over the disk? For instance, some of you might have organized your media files into different folders by artist name, or by download source.

Let’s see how you can harness the power of automation to automatically import music to iTunes on a Mac.

How to turn your Mac into an internet printer, and print from anywhere

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Epson Expression Home XP-430 multifunction printer
It's surprisingly easy to print a file remotely on a Mac.
Photo: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

Picture this scenario: You’ve multiple computers at your office and only one of them (which is a Mac) is connected to the printer. Every time you need to print a document stored on these “other” computers, you have to manually transfer the file to the Mac and start the printing process from there. Wouldn’t it be super-convenient if you could just send a document wirelessly and instantly initiate the process of printing files remotely?

Today, I’ll show you how to break apart from this hassle and easily print files remotely from any computer using a combination of Dropbox and Automator.

Let Alloy turn your frequent iPhone tasks into apps

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Alloy streamlines our frequent multi-step tasks into quick automated launchers.
Photo: Alloy

Alloy is the iPhone app that ultimately wants you to spend less time using your iPhone. It lets you create automated tasks and workflows that you can launch with one tap. The automations can upload a selfie to Twitter, convert currency, save your parking location, perform a saved search on Amazon and just about anything else if you’re willing to get creative

Recreate Everpix’s Flashback With Automator, Dropbox and iCal

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flashback

It seems like people really miss Everpix’s great Flashback feature. I have spent far too many hours over the past few days trying to find a way to replace it, but Thomas Verschoren went one better, and rolled his own Flashback. It relies on your photos being stored in Dropbox, and requires you to set an Automator action to run automatically every day using iCal, but it’s pretty simple as Thomas provides all the pieces for you.

How To Easily Change The File Type Of A Folder Full Of Images [OS X Tips]

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Batch Processing Pixelmator

One of the things we get a lot here at Cult of Mac, especially in our coverage of games, is folders full of promotional images. Now, for a variety of reasons, we often need to change the type of those images from, say, PNG to JPG files.

You can use Preview, of course, opening them all at once, and then selecting them all, then exporting them all to a new folder with a new image type. It’s workable, but it’s tedious.

Using Pixelmator, an affordable image editing program for the Mac, Automator (no relation), a scripting app bundled in Mac OS X, and Alfred, a pretty slick app launching application, you can make these changes much faster.

Here’s how.

Use Automator, ImageMagick And Shell Scripting To Easily Splice iPhone Screenshots And Other Pictures [How To]

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Today’s how-to will show you how to install the command-line picture-manipulation tool ImageMagick, and how to build an Automator system service using shell scripting. The Service will take any number of pictures and make one long photo that contains them all. It’s as if you laid them out in a row on a table, only without a table, and with a computer.

Amazingly, it’s all pretty easy.

Script Grabs Hi-Res Icons For Any iOS App You Like

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This post is a little “inside baseball,” as it’s about a new tool for grabbing high-res app icons direct from the command line (or using an app), and this is the kind of thing that is most useful to writers like me. Then again, it’s by Brett ‘I just built this’ Terpstra, the Hardest Working Man on the Internet™, and is plain ingenious, so lets take a look.