Movie Tracking with Shortcuts and Data Jar

I like to keep track of movies I’d like to watch and movies I’ve watched. I know it’s not very useful information, but it’s pretty easy to track using Shortcuts, and it helps me select movies to watch whenever I feel like it.

In this post, I’ll explain my movie tracking setup which is built on Shortcuts, Toolbox Pro and Data Jar (which is still in beta), with the help of Scriptable.

Toolbox Pro is a very nice app that just provides powerful actions for Shortcuts. It has a large amount of actions, some of them you need an in-app purchase for, but the ones we’ll be needing today are all free.

Data Jar is an incredible Shortcuts data store. It’s like a permanent dictionary that lives outside of Shortcuts, but can be very easily accessed and manipulated using Shortcuts.

The setup consists of 3 main Shortcuts, linked here, and explained below:

All the data is stored locally in Data Jar, automatically gathered and displayed using Toolbox Pro’s actions in Shortcuts.

Here’s how it all works:

Sliding Tily

Today, I’m launching my first app to the App Store. It’s a little game called Sliding Tily, or just Tily for short.

This game is a sliding tile puzzle game with a small number of levels, and a few search algorithms that can solve each level with varying levels of efficiency, including:

The goal of the game is to move the main tile (colored in red) to the rightmost bottom position, in the lowest number of moves.

Sliding Tily Screenshots

The whole game is open source and you can check out the source code here.

I know it’s not a huge game, it started out as a university project, but I thought it would be fun to release to the App Store, alongside the code implementing some common search algorithms in a way that’s generelizable to other state space search problems, which may be helpful to someone learning those algorithms.

You can check it out here. I hope you enjoy it!

My Setup

I’m hoping to publish here more often than I have since I started this blog, so in this post I’m going to try to explain how I do things in general. I don’t have the most interesting setup, I just think it’s worth sharing for future reference because I always feel I can understand why people ask for specific features or complain about different technology issues if I know how they use the stuff they use, software and hardware.

🔗 Unpaid shortcut redux

A few days ago, Dr. Drang wrote a post on his website explaining a Shortcut he put together to sum up the total of sent invoices. It‘s a cool idea, the Shortcut utilized several regular expressions to figure out the invoiced amount from the title of a reminder which included multiple bits of information, formatted in a specific way. After reading the post I thought the shortcut could be simplified by using a cool feature of the Magic Variable system in Shortcut, and the “Format Number” action.