Apple automation curriculum

Hi everyone.

I’m loving more and more my apple products however I feel I’m not taking a full advantage of them because I don’t understand and know how to do so automation tasks and use automation software (text expander, Keyboard Maestro, Hazel, Better Touch, Automator and Shortcuts).

I want to start my learning journey with apple script → automator → Shortcuts and finally how to use the other apps.

What do you suggest? What resources do you recommend?


I would start with Shortcuts. Apple has clearly indicated that is the future of Mac automation. And it is pretty easy to get started.

I would skip Automator. Reading the tea leaves it seems that Automator is not long for this world and that Shortcuts will replace Automator over time.

Apple Script is useful but it is not where I would start. But as it will likely be around for a good while yet it is worth learning.

Resources for Shortcuts include Take Control of Shortcuts by Rosemary Orchard, and Shortcuts for Mac Field Guide by David Sparks.

For AppleScript the choices are old and often somewhat out of date. AppleScript 1-2-3 by Sal Soghoian and Bill Cheeseman is oft recommended.

Good luck and have fun.


Thanks for this complete answer, I’ll start my journey then with shortcuts and exploring the resources you mention. I see myself in the future just developing shortcuts for friends to help them get stuff done easily!

I’ll report how my journey went :slight_smile:

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David’s Keyboard Maestro field guide is solid, too.

Shortcuts and Keyboard Maestro would be my vote for the two apps/systems to master first.


Thanks! I’ll start there :slight_smile:

Listen to the Automators podcast with @MacSparky and @RosemaryOrchard

There’s also a YouTube podcast called iOS today (with Mikak Sargent and Rosemary Orchard) that has a section called Shortcuts Corner. Honestly I skip to that part to see how they answer people’s Shortcut challenges and questions. I learn a lot from that.

There’s so much in Shortcuts that’s just hidden deep inside long presses and submenus, etc.


I’ll check it out, thank you.

Enjoy the journey, and remember it’s not a race. Automation can be a life long hobby.


Thanks! I’m trying to fit some time to do this in my everyday schedule.