Established in late 2011, this relatively new service ‘Internet to work’ for you. The creators of IFTTT observed the digital world of the internet around them, and realised how they could make things simpler for a user to collect, share & collate information across social platforms with ease. The way that this is achieved is through “triggers and actions” chosen by the user. Much of what IFTTT achieves could be done through various APIs, but the level of integration offered, along with ease of use, is unprecedented.
Now, ask yourself a few simple questions:
- Do you use social networking tools in a daily basis (Facebook, Flickr, Twitter, Instagram or YouTube)?
- Do you find yourself uploading a photo or sharing same messages on twitter and facebook?
- Do you wish your instagram photos to be posted on tumblr or flickr automagically?
- Do you wish get something done when one of your email, favourite blog or social network site gets updated?
If any of the above you ever wanted to do then IFTTT will make the magic possible for you. Let us have a quick understanding of IFTTT and how it works.
Triggers and Actions
‘When something happens (this) then do something else (that).’
Triggers and actions all derive from the source of ‘channels’. In IFTTT’s case channels serve as the unique array of services, devices, and platforms that an internet user would use on a daily basis. For instance, RSS feeds, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Email, Dropbox, Stocks and Shares, Soundcloud & Evernote would all be examples of different channels.
By combining one channels trigger with another’s action, you can create internet ‘tasks’ that are carried out for you automatically. So for example if you take any photo with Instagram it will be posted straight to your dropbox – or perhaps all your tweets from twitter log themselves automatically into your Gmail calendar.
The combinations that can be created out of this ‘trigger and action’ concept are virtually endless. And what is the best feature, is that a user can peruse combinations which have been made by other users. These are called ‘recipes’.
On the IFTTT website there are countless recipes concerning how to connect channels on the internet together for different purposes. Here are some of the best loved:
Email Me ’10 Things to Know This Morning’
IFTTT links 10 things which you need to know what’s going on in the world straight to your inbox every morning. The facts are short and to the point and gives clickable links if it tickles your interest and you want to read more. Examples of the facts: ‘Apple has a plan to reinvent your earbuds’ ‘Facebook just moved into a big office in Seattle’ ‘Boxeee may have only sold 200,000 boxes’….
Dear Diary, a Running Log of Where I am
This recipe links any check-ins you use on your foursquare account with your Gmail calendar – which is handy if you want to look back over where you’ve been in the past. The fact that is automated is just complete bliss…why not!
Thanking People in Twitter when they mention You
If you feel the need to thank people that mention you in twitter than this recipe is ultimately for you. Send a friend or colleague personal ‘thank you’ message every time someone gives you a shout. Similar uses might be to automatically follow someone back every time they follow you or tweet @ you.
Autosave Instagram photos to Dropbox
This recipe will save all the photos to your dropbox when you post them to your instagram. Savvy?
In conclusion, IFTTT is a great concept which an increasing amount of web users are utilizing. You can even chain recipes together for added functionality. With so many channels to update statuses and store information, IFTTT makes things easy- an excellent service. Try it out, and see what you can come up with (we like having IFTTT phone us in the morning as a secondary alarm).