DAY FOURTEEN - IFTTT Digital January

Welcome to Day Fourteen of Digital January. Today we're going to take a look at IFTTT (If This Then That). This is one of the smartest tools you'll ever see - it has the power to connect several tools together and allow them to work with each other to save time and effort.

If you've got a moment and you're enjoying Digital January - and lots of people are, according to our statistics - why not give us some feedback on our Padlet (and see Day Three for an introduction to Padlet).

What does it do?

One of the benefits of technology is that it can save us time and IFTTT has been designed to do just that. IFTTT links up the different tools and services that we use regularly and helps to create new experiences. For example, you can link up services like Box, Facebook and Instagram so that any new photos posted on Facebook or Instagram automatically save to Box. This is one example, but there are hundreds of combinations of commonly-used apps which can be connected to each other and made to perform simple functions depending on logical conditions.

Users can do this by creating an applet or using an existing applet that’s been shared by other users of IFTTT.

When would you use it?

Hundreds of applets have been created for IFTTT that do a whole myriad of things such as;

  • Automatically save all of your Tweets into a Google Document (like a Word document but stored on the Web)
  • Have online articles that you Like or Star on reading apps like Pocket or Medium (more on both those apps coming soon!) automatically filed to some other app such as Evernote,
  • Automatically send you a text message when you wake up to tell you if your Weather app says that rain is forecast in your location that day.
  • Share useful articles and information to several places without manually having to share to multiple sites or people.
  • Manage and monitor some of your home appliances that might be connected to the Internet of Things and also link with personal fitness devices.
  • Add songs from YouTube videos to a Spotify playlist.

You can hook up hundreds of apps to work with each other - all the major apps you'll have heard of are there - and the combinations of apps interacting with each other under logical conditions or rules make it one of the most exciting tools on the Web.

For a glimpse into a science-fiction world where you can control things in your home remotely, take a look at this video (13 minutes);

How do you access it?

You can access IFTTT here - and it's free!

You can also access it as an App for Android and Apple smart devices.

Where can you get help to use it?

There's a good introductory video here (23 minutes);

What Digital Literacy skills will Spark help you to develop?

The University of Dundee has a Digital Literacies Framework which sets out what sort of digital skills you should have, whether you're a student or a staff member. It's unlikely you'll have all the skills contained in the Framework (yet!), but this project can help you get started in developing some new ones. To see the Framework click here and click on Digital Literacies Framework at Dundee University to download a copy.

Using a digital tool such as IFTTT to organise your time is an aspect of DIMENSION 1 - Understand and engage in Digital practices as outlined in the Framework.



Created with images by Aih. - "ThRainbowRaider." • pcambraf - "Diversion"

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