A Couple of Shortcut Tips

My favourite feature that Apple introduced us to at WWDC this year was, far and away, Shortcuts. I’ve not left the app since it was released to the public on Monday. Workflow never really clicked for me, so I had assumed Shortcuts would be the same. This time, however, I made a concerted effort to really dig in properly and I realised very quickly it’s far more intuitive than it seems at first.

I’ve been meaning to (threatening to) start doing a few more regular posts here to share some ideas that I’ve either created myself, or to highlight some creations I’ve found around the web. This, unfortunately, isn’t that …

I did, however, think it may be useful to share a couple of small tips I’ve found really help when you start trying to build some more complex Shortucts.

Nesting

As you start to get more confident with Shortcuts, you’ll want to start building more and more complex flows. If you’ve seen, or tried to create, any of the popular morning routine type Shortcuts you’ll see what I mean. Something that really helps with this, however, is nesting your Shortcuts within each other.

Nesting involves creating a small component of your Shortcut as a standalone element, and then creating a master Shortcut that will pull in your seperate sub Shortcuts. An example of this can be seen here:

Nested Shortcuts

Each of the referenced Shortcuts are quite long, at times, but very managable as a single entity. When you add them into an overall master Shortcut, however, everything is far more managable.

Tagging

I’ve the last few weeks I’ve accrued about 200ish Shortcuts, all with different colours and Glyphs. It’s a mess in there! When I have a few minutes in the evening I’m taking a few minutes to review these to tidy them up, colour code and update the glphys to something more logical.

Something that may also be useful, which I’m also doing, is for you to ‘tag’ your Shortcuts. If you add a ‘Comment’ step to your Shortcut and then add something like #Automation you can then search for grouped / similarly tagged Shortcuts via … another Shortcut.

Here’s a Shortcut that can search for your tags, once setup.

I found this tag searching Shortcut elsewhere, but I can’t recall where now to give credit unfortunately. I would imagine it was either from Matt or Viticci.

Watch this space for more Shortcuts related goodness soon!