42 Astoundingly Useful Scripts and Automations for the Macintosh

About Astounding Scripts

Because I can!

Jerry Stratton

Astounding@Goodreads—Wednesday, August 14th, 2019

If you use Goodreads, here’s the entry for 42 Astoundingly Useful Scripts and Automations for the Macintosh.

I find Goodreads very useful for keeping track of what I thought about the books I’ve read. In fact, one of the scripts that I cut from 42 Astoundingly Useful Scripts was one for searching my Goodreads backup. I download the backup once a week, and so have it available for off-line searching; this also allows for more specific searches that the Goodreads website doesn’t allow for.

Here’s an older version of that script.

I cut it because, while that is an older version, I had already covered it, and in addition it would have been the longest script in the book. Part of the point of these scripts is that they can be typed in without too much work (and in fact, it should be a lot easier to type them in accurately than it was to type in the BASIC programs from the BASIC books that inspired me).

That said, I may change my mind in a future sequel. Using Pythonista on the iPhone and iPad, that script is especially useful because I have access to my reviews quickly while on the road.

42 Astounding Scripts is live!—Friday, August 2nd, 2019
Astounding Scripts book cover

This is the ebook cover from Apple Books. It’s also available in print on Amazon and as an ebook on Smashwords.

Do you want to play music on your computer? Do you want to create ASCII art from your photographs? Play podcasts back faster, snapshot web pages, display upcoming birthdays on your Desktop? Do horribly ancient filenames drive you crazy? Would you like to replace their underscores with spaces and separate their mashed-together words to readable ones? Would you like to organize your favorite recipes?

There’s a script for all of that in 42 Astoundingly Useful Scripts and Automations for the Macintosh.

42 Astounding Scripts shows you how to take control of your Macintosh.

I’ve been reading a lot of books about computers from the late seventies and early eighties. I cut my programming teeth on books like Ken Tracton’s 57 Practical Programs & Games in BASIC and the various forms of 101 BASIC Computer Games*. Reading these books again, I began to feel, not nostalgic, but jealous. Jealous of the younger me who had these books to read. As far as I can tell they don’t exist now. I wanted to read a book that didn’t exist.

Sometimes if there’s a book you really want to read, you have to write it yourself. — Ann Patchett (New York Times, Writers On Writing, August 26, 2002)

So I went through the scripts I use on a weekly and even daily basis, as well as a few scripts I hadn’t written yet but wanted to, and put together the book I really wanted to read. This is a book I would want to buy if I hadn’t written it.

Some of the scripts are a few lines long; others are a few pages long. Every one of them is something I’ve found useful and fun.

Buy on Amazon (paperback)—Thursday, August 1st, 2019

If you have a Macintosh and you want to get your retro on, take a look at 42 Astoundingly Useful Scripts and Automations for the Macintosh. These modern scripts will help you work faster and more reliably, and inspire your own custom scripts for your own workflow.

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