9 LCP tricks you won’t find in Launch Center Pro
Lately I’ve been using Launch Center Pro’s list of officially supported apps as my go-to source of url schemes, however, there are some tricks unlisted, mostly because the devs responsible for the listed apps didn’t update their entries. This article will cover a few tricks I found in the past few months that you can put good use.
Viewing contexts, folders, perspectives and tasks from Omnifocus:
This one requires the Mac app to generate links for the section of Omnifocus you’d like to be pointed out from LCP. Nick Wynja published about this workflow more than 1 year ago, so you should definitely check it out. Here’s one of the tweets from Ken Case, Omni CEO, explaining the action, as quoted in Nick’s article.
Context, folder, and task URLs can be generated from the Mac client by selecting something and using Edit->Copy As Link.
This allows you to link straight to a context, such as @errands, to check on the go.
Fantastical supports more than natural language
Besides the x-callback support and the beautiful natural language input, Fantastical also has one of the most vast url schemes out there, supporting a myriad of parameters if you’re not willing to use the
fantastical2://parse?sentence= scheme. Each one of the parameters refers to one of the fields that would be filled by the interpretation of the natural language input. Straight from Fantastical docs:
The following parameters are also supported: title, location, url, notes, start, end, allDay (start/end require the format yyyy-MM-dd HH:mm, allDay can be 1 or 0). If you use the sentence parameter it will cause other parameters to be ignored.
How great can that be? In a previous article, I talked about a way to assign url actions to the url field in a Fantastical event. In the example, I use Clear and Ita, adding a link to the list of interest in the event.
More apps support the due date parameter
Perhaps due to the lack of a date picker1, most apps supporting a parameter to set due dates to tasks are absent from the LCP registered url schemes. Besides the aforementioned Fantastical, two other apps come to mind: Firetask and Things. Here is an excerpt from the previous, since Things still hasn’t published a documentation2:
The Firetask URL scheme always has the format firetask://addTask?subject=.... The subject parameter is mandatory, all other parameters are optional. The optional parameters include notes, due (ISO date: YYYY-MM-DD, e.g., "2013-02-20"), priority (Critical, High, Medium, Low, Trivial), project (project name), and category (category name).
Notice how all examples require the use of ISO dates in the YYYY-MM-DD scheme, luckily to us, that’s exactly how Drafts parses its
Cloudier has a bad ass url scheme and x-callback support
Cloudier, a client for the Cloud service to quickly share just about anything with tiny links. The article contains the whole documentation, which you can only reach through the app otherwise: tap and hold on the Settings button.
I wrote about this before. How awesome is its url scheme? It allows you to upload files from urls, like that PDF you found on the web. Oh, don’t forget the x-callback-url support.
2Do has a great url scheme now
2Do made its way from the iOS to the Mac and became one of the most robust task managers out there. They recently released a brand-new version of their desktop counterpart and, I gotta tell you, it looks gorgeous and packed with great features. You should definitely give it a spin.
The iOS app lacked a url scheme to add tasks until a few months ago. You can find the whole documentation in their website. Here’s the example extracted from the documentation to show how badass the scheme can be:
twodo:///add?task=[title]&forlist=[list name]¬e=[note]&priority=[0,1,2,3]&tags=[comma separated names]
Search your reminders and timers in Due
You know Due, I mentioned it many times in this blog and others did the same. That’s because after you get Due, there’s no need to bother searching any other app for reminders. It doesn’t get better than that3.
In version 1.9.5, Due released a new parameter to let you search through your inputs. Here’s how it looks like calling from LCP:
This action prompts you to input the query to search, install it here. It is extremely simple and useful, you should definitely check what Eric Pramono did with these.
Increment or decrement in Tally and bounce back
You probably grew suspicious when you checked for Tally, an app to count created by Greg Pierce, the guy behind Drafts, Terminology and x-callback-url, in LCP and found out it only supported launch.
The truth is that Tally supports x-callback and its url scheme allows you to increment or decrement from pre-made tallies. This is an example from its docs to add to a tally:
This action will add a count to a tally named Pushups. Install it here.
Compose items to Buffer
You know Buffer, it is the most used social client out there with the distinguishing feature of not being social at all. You can send quickly written posts and attach urls to your buffers with the following url action4:
This action prompts you to write the post and uses your clipboard to attach a link to it. Install it here.
Do several tricks with Textastic
I lost count on how many times Textastic saved me, fixing typos in articles or even messing up with my CSS stylesheet. In terms of actions, it shares similar parameters to Byword, allowing you to create new files; open, append to or replace the content of existing files.
I covered another trick to open the source code from a website in the app in a previous article. Did I mention it also has x-callback support? Check the docs here.
What we learned today is that you, as a user, should look for the app documentation, you’ll probably find at least one tweet about it. As a developer, rush to this link and update your url schemes to have them displayed at Launch Center Pro’s Action Composer. You already had the trouble to add the schemes, so you better spread the word.
That could be a nice kind of prompt, David. ↩
Christopher White has written an in-depth documentation of Things, in case you need to check that out. ↩
Although an update for iOS 7 design is welcome. ↩
Courtesy of Handle Open Url, sometimes it is quite accurate. ↩