Shortcuts developer experience

2023-11-15 00:00

Over the last couple of years, but in particular the last year, I have tried very hard to do more with shortcuts as is. Without doing my own apps or remote scripts or going into Scriptable and similar to do things.

There are a few things that still drive me nuts about the entire experience of doing it.

  1. We still have no real code re-use, and running a sub-shortcut sucks. For a number of reasons: you can’t pass real data to it in an easy way, it is A LOT of setup on each side to make it work, and you end up with a stupid amount of shortcuts that makes everything a mess.
  2. Because of 1 you have to duplicate blocks all the time, and this takes way too much time. And fuss to make it work. Plus that most of the time you have to re-do all the variable references, and if you’re not on macOS you can’t really select a bunch of things and duplicate it.
  3. It is still really bad at keeping track of what variables should be reset or kept when you move things around. Leading to you having to re-do a lot of variables a lot
  4. Why can’t it persist the place I was picking actions from for a while?
  5. Why isn’t it built into every type of block to give it a name?
  6. It should be a context action to add comments above or below a block.

Made with ❤️ in Bergen, Norway by Eivind Hjertnes