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  1 - Why Hazel?

Video Description

Hazel is an automation tool for the Mac that, with a little training, gives mere mortals god-like automation powers.

Video Transcription

Hi, everybody.

It's David Sparks.

And I'm here to share with you my latest screencast about one of my very favorite Mac apps called Hazel. So why should we make a screencast about Hazel?

Well, the reason is because I hate repetition. And I've always hated repetition.

We've got these Macs that have way more power than it took to send a man to the moon on our desks. They can run billions of operations per second. 

And yet as users, we're still sitting around, typing in names of files and moving things to folders. The computer should be smart enough to do that for us.

And with Hazel, it can be. My dislike of repetition goes back years. In fact, I originally learned AppleScript so I wouldn't have to do repeating tasks on my Mac. AppleScript is a special language that Apple designed to make it easier to make applications interact with each other and perform tasks on your Mac.

It's the automation language of the Mac.

But the problem is it's hard.

You've got to study it and read books. And even then, debugging it isn't always that great. The bottom line is people who don't want to bother to learn a programming language can't take advantage of it.

That's where Hazel comes in.

Hazel lets you take a file on your Mac and automatically rename the file. It can even look inside the file for the date and then add that date from inside the file to the name of the file. And when you're done, Hazel can take that file and automatically move it into a folder for you. So it's automatically saved.

But that's just the tip of the iceberg.

Hazel can also make it easier for you to save files so you can view them on your iPad.

Hazel can take music and save it automatically to iTunes, or it can take pictures on your Mac and automatically save them to photos. Using Hazel, I can turn on music when I get home or I can automatically put my computer to sleep.

You may not know it, but when you install a new application on your Mac, it often puts in obscure resource files that are kind of sprinkled throughout the system. Getting rid of those later is pretty difficult, but not with Hazel When you delete an application with Hazel, not only does it get rid of the application, but all those resource files, too. And later, if you put the application back, Hazel will restore the resource files as well. It's great.

Hazel also lets you manage your trash can so it doesn't get too big.

I am just barely joking when I say that if I sneeze, Hazel will deliver a box of tissue.

So to answer my original question, the reason you want Hazel in your life is because with Hazel, anybody can automate their Macs. You don't need to learn how to program. You don't need to read books.

By the end of this screencast, you're going to be a master at it And you're going to be automating things on your Mac you never knew were possible. Put simply, since Hazel came into my life, I now suck at AppleScript. And you can suck at AppleScript, too, because with Hazel, you won't need it.

So what are we waiting for? Let's go learn about Hazel.