Zapier? Make? IFTTT? Pipedream? Shortcuts? Oh my!

I’ve never had a sufficiently compelling reason to get into automation to invest the time I assume it would take to learn how. Of course, perhaps I’m just blissfully unaware of what I’m missing out on. The MacSparky Field Guides on the different flavors of Shortcuts may be the only ones I don’t have.

But now I think I do have a worthwhile use case…. If it can be done. I would like to automagically move or copy anything in a Notion database that has a Start or Due date within the next 7 days into TickTick.

I spent some while trying to create a Zap in Zapier and it can recognize the Notion database but that’s as much as I’ve been able to get it to do. From what I can tell, Make has never heard of Notion. I don’t know about IFTTT. Pipedream looks like it would require some sophisticated syntax and the only coding I’ve done was HTML and CSS for the web and Fortran for analyzing enzyme kinetics a half century ago.

If I were to invest the time necessary to learn how to use any of these my preference would be to learn how to use Shortcuts, with the idea that I would come across other uses as well. But is it even possible to accomplish what I’m trying to do with any of these utilities?

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Have you looked at this? Connect your Notion to TickTick integration in 2 minutes | Zapier

I don’t use either app so cannot troubleshoot for you. However I will say that I found (a couple of years ago) that the Zapier community are exceptionally helpful. I got stuck on a Trello integration and asked for help and someone wrote the entire zap for me, unprompted, on a Sunday morning (you can see I remain impressed by this, years later :joy:). If there’s one bit you cannot get to work, it’s worth asking.

I used IFTTT when they were much younger and less “corporate” than they are now, but I’ve found many apps push Zapier integrations more than IFTTT. I also found IFTTT’s tiresome drift to paywalling a lot of things very annoying.

Apple’s Shortcuts is sort of a “poorer cousin”. It can do some very fun stuff, but it’s hard to troubleshoot when something goes wrong, and it’s running on device. On the upside, lots of folks build random Shortcuts just to see what it can do, so you might find someone has already tried to do what you want if you look online.

My personal view is Shortcuts is often worth exploring, and it would be free. I think nowadays my first visit would be to Shortcuts, particularly if it’s something that I mostly administer on my iPad. (You need to have apps for the software you’re wanting to automate installed on your iOS device - just be aware of that!)

Shortcuts and Zapier I think are both good for learning about automations. They can both be very complex, but their interfaces are built with simplicity/beginners in mind.

Thank you for your thoughtful response @Pupsino. I’ve continued to tinker with Zapier and have made enough progress to be cautiously optimistic that it may be capable of doing what I want. That’s encouraging. Nevertheless, I remain curious about Shortcuts for the Mac and wonder if it could accomplish the same sort of thing. Or even Alfred, which I have. It’s supposed to be capable doing some automations.

Do Notion and Tick Tick both support shortcuts?

Alfred can do some complex stuff. I’ve not played with it much but it’s worth googling because the very few actions I’ve set up are either ones I downloaded that someone else made, or were where I followed step-by-step instructions someone had written. Alfred benefits from a lot of power users!

I was hoping that someone would chime in to understand which of these services is the most reasonable in terms of cost. As I understand from my short amount of reading, IFTTT has both started charging and has become less useful.

It’s only one datapoint but I’m happy with Tried most of the others in the past but is what has stuck.

Another option is the open source N8N which you can self-host at home for free. I haven’t done much with it, but I see it has Notion support and I found an article on integrating it with TickTick as well.