Archive for the 'End user programming' Category

Convert movies on a Mac for iPhone

My digital camera takes nice movies as well as photos. The movies play just fine in QuickTime, but they aren’t in the right format for the iPhone. Fortunately, Apple’s Automator has the necessary commands to automate converting movies and importing them into iTunes. You can drop multiple movies or a folder of movies onto the app and they will all be converted and imported.

Here’s a screenshot of the Automator app:

To create the script, you drag and drop the two commands from the left side of Automator. If you’ve never used Automator, there’s a nice one-page tutorial at Mac 101: Automator

I use the 720p Setting to encode the movies, since that works well on the iPhone 4S. For older iPhones, you may want to use 480p.  I have the movies added to an iTunes playlist I named iPhone movies. (You create a playlist in iTunes by clicking the “+” in the lower left corner of iTunes. Then with your iPhone plugged in to your Mac, select your iPhone under Devices on the left side of iTunes, click the Movies button along the top of the iTunes window, and click the checkbox for your playlist in the Include Movies from Playlists area.)

Some useful web scripts

I have been working for the last two years on a program called CoScripter, which automates activities on the web. You create a script by turning on a recorder while you perform an activity, and you save the script to a public wiki where anyone can use it.

Scripts can be used both for activities that you repeat frequently, and for showing other people how to perform an activity.

Here are some of my favorite scripts for activities that I perform frequently:

Here are some of my favorite scripts for  others:

CoScripter is a free, open-source Firefox extension from IBM.