If This Then That, My New Favorite Internet Service

First off, a brief Operation GIT report that I stayed on my calorie budget yesterday!  I am quite proud because I was totally ready to gnaw my arm off.  My appetite has gotten TOTALLY out of hand lately, so I am presently on the long trek of shrinking my stomach again.  Which means this week will suck and after that, we should be mostly good.


Now, I have gone off on rants before about why I think every blogger needs to have a subscribe by email option.  I’ve been argued with by bloggers who don’t want to do it (they’re wrong and they are losing out on potential audience who aren’t going to change their behavior just because the blogger wants more actual hits on their blog).  I’ve brow-beat others into adding one.  This is seriously a HUGE pet peeve of mine.  Because there are several blogs I’d like to subscribe to but they don’t offer the option and I’m just SOL because I’m not going to remember to go check every day for new content, if I even had time for that, which I don’t.

Oh, but over the weekend I discovered a glorious, WONDERFUL website.  IFTTT.com  (It stands for “If this, then that.”)  I found it when I went hunting (thank you Google) for something that would convert an RSS feed (which most people DO have, more because most blog themes seem to come preloaded with it) into email.  What IFTTT does is allow you to create what it calls “recipes” based on these If/Then statements, and it integrates with a whole metric crapton of familiar (and unfamiliar) web services.

So, I created three recipes that take the RSS feeds of blogs I wanted to subscribe to (e.g. If a new post hits the RSS feed at this address) and EMAIL IT TO ME (e.g. Then send an email to this address).  Simple.  Glorious.  EXACTLY WHAT I WANT.

I am still SOL on a couple of blogs that don’t even seem to have RSS subscription options, but this is big progress.

But seriously there is an endless variety of options. You can have stuff send you text messages, emails, automatically post stuff, notify you when there are new books added to the Amazon Top 100 Ebooks chart, send a text when there’s some new free music at iTunes.  There is a whole library of other people’s recipes you can use as well (it will obviously change settings on those to integrate with your accounts at these various other services).  All in all, even though I’m only using it for one thing so far, I say that this site is damned cool, an I’ll be interested in exploring other options in the future.


3 thoughts on “If This Then That, My New Favorite Internet Service

  1. OH, I am so with you on the blogs that don’t have the email subscribe. I’m glad you found a work-around solution for some of them, but I’m too busy for even that, so if someone happens to post on FB that one of those blogs has a good post, I go there, but I never check the RSS feed thingy. The thing is, most of the blogs I follow, if I like their subject, I click through to read online anyway because I read enough emails the way it is, plus I almost always want to see the comments to see if other people react the same way I did to what was written.

    (And I always wondered WHY some of the bigger blogs don’t have that…now I know why. Grr. It almost makes me want to read them less just to be contrary. LOL)

  2. I SO agree with you. I don’t have time to go check Google Reader every day, so I do miss out on some blogs I want to follow because they don’t have the email option.

    Now if you can only help me figure out how to subscribe to comments on Blogspot blogs. When I comment, I never know if I’m answered back (which is important to me) unless I just remember to go back. Sometimes there’s something you can click that LOOKS like you are subscribing, but it takes me to a place to save it on my computer. THIS is my biggest beef.

  3. I only subscribe to blogs with email feeds although I click through and read it on the original site. I also like to follow any comments I write so I do subscribe to the followup comments.

    IFTTT sounds interesting. I’m going to check it out.

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