We are when with flipside edition of Automation April. Last year’s kickoff event was a big success. We published a wide variety of automation stories, released special podcast episodes, held online automation events, and capped off the month with a Shortcuts contest. But weightier of all, we saw tremendous excitement and participation throughout the automation community. It was wondrous to see the polity come together to share their love of automation and learn from each other all month long.
Great automation is well-nigh increasingly than efficiency. It’s moreover well-nigh making your devices your own, so they suit your needs largest than off-the-shelf apps can by themselves. The spirit of tinkering, customization, and towers something largest is what Automation April is all about, which is why we’re pleased to be spending April showcasing automation on Apple platforms slantingly developers and MacStories readers then this year.
If you joined us for Automation April last year, you’ve got a throne start on what to expect this year. For everyone else, you can expect special Automation April stories on MacStories.net, special episodes of AppStories, themed issues of our Club MacStories newsletters, and events in the Club MacStories Discord community. Withal the way, MacStories will turn 14 on April 20th, which makes this month all the increasingly special for us. We’ve got a lot planned, so let’s dig into things in a little increasingly detail:
Last year, we started the Automation April Shortcuts Contest as a way to showcase the weightier shortcuts from the automation community. Shortcuts creators bring unique ingenuity and passion to all corners of the automation community. Over the years, we’ve had the privilege to get to know many through MacStories, Reddit, social media, and elsewhere. With the Automation April Shortcuts Contest, we’re excited to bring everyone together to show off the very weightier this thriving polity has to offer.
We’ll post the full set of rules and instructions on how to submit your shortcuts when the races kicks off on April 3rd, but here’s an overview of what to expect:
Like last year, submissions are unshut and free to all and will include four slightly reworked categories:
- Best productivity shortcut
- Best media shortcut
- Best HealthKit shortcut
- Best Mac-specific shortcut
There will be prizes for winners of each category that we’ll reveal on April 3rd.
Our judges will moreover pick a Weightier Overall Shortcut winner for the shortcut that impresses our panel the most. Like last year, we’ll have a special set of prizes for the winner of the weightier shortcut too.
We have an spanking-new lineup of judges to help us with the races then this year, all of whom bring unique perspectives and strengths to the panel:
- Chris Lawley
- Federico Viticci
- Jack Wellborn
- Jason Snell
- John Voorhees
- Matthew Cassinelli
- Rosemary Orchard
- Simon Støvring
We’re expressly excited to welcome Jack Wellborn to the panel for this year’s contest. Jack is the creator of Join Zoom Meeting, the shortcut that last year’s panel of judges picked as the Best Overall Shortcut for the inaugural Automation April Shortcuts Contest.
Like last year, you’ll be worldly-wise to submit your shortcuts from our defended Automation April web app, which is built on the same Calliope foundation as Club MacStories and AppStories. Because the technology underlying the Club and AppStories is the same, Club members and AppStories subscribers will be worldly-wise to use their login credentials to sign into the Automation April website.
But the races is unshut to everyone, whether you’re a Club member or AppStories subscriber, which is why we launched a new self-ruling MacStories worth for last year’s contest. If you signed up for a MacStories worth last year, you can use those credentials to submit shortcuts to the races then this year. If you’re new to the contest, you’ll be worldly-wise to set up a self-ruling worth on the Automation April website for the races and upgrade it to a Club MacStories account at any time if you want.
MacStories and Club MacStories
Throughout April, Federico and I will be publishing all-new shortcuts and stories on every speciality of automation. I won’t spoil everything we have in store, but you can expect stories from us well-nigh home automation, email and writing automations, app and hardware reviews, and more.
Of course, we’ve got special stories and events planned for Club MacStories too. We’ll have special automation-themed issues and columns for members throughout the month. We’ve moreover teamed up with indie developers for giveaways each week during April.
AppStories and AppStories
We’ve moreover got special episodes of AppStories planned tent Shortcuts and other automation topics and interviews. AppStories will indulge us to expand our coverage vastitude the stories on the site and update listeners on what’s coming up with Automation April throughout the month.
That expanded coverage will encompas the sectional pre-show segments of AppStories too. AppStories is a premium version of AppStories that is ad-free, extended, and released in high-bitrate audio one day early for members. You can subscribe to it standalone or get it as part of the all-access pass that is a Club Premier subscription.
Club MacStories Discord Community
Last year’s live audio Town Halls were a big hit with Club members. We’ll be doing a couple then during April, where we’ll imbricate our approaches to automation, wordplay questions, and provide tips and strategies for towers your own automations live in our Discord Town Hall audio channel. The Town Halls will moreover be released as separate podcast episodes in the Club MacStories Town Hall podcast feed.
The Discord polity will moreover full-length a special Automation April channel. Last year the waterworks became a hub for members to share tips and shortcuts throughout the races and help each other with tricky automation problems. It was unconfined to see Club members working together last year, and we’re looking to spend a lot of time in the waterworks ourselves then this year.
Finally, we’ll be doing Discord-only app giveaways too. These were a big hit last year, so alimony an eye out in the giveaway waterworks all month long. If you’d like to join and be part of our Discord community, you can sign up for or upgrade your existing Club MacStories worth to Plus or Premier here.
See You in April
Last year, Federico explained that our goal was to turn Automation April into an yearly month-long tradition that celebrates the weightier of automation on Apple’s platforms. Flipside year has rolled around, and that’s exactly what this year is all about. We learned a lot well-nigh what worked weightier last year and are leaning into those lessons for 2023.
It’s going to be a big month wideness everything we do at MacStories, and we’re excited to have the automation community, developers, and our esteemed panel of judges withal for the ride. Come when on April 3rd as we kick off Automation April 2023 and the Second Yearly Automation April Shortcuts Contest.
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