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Friday Favorite: Dropzone


One of my favorite new tools is Dropzone from Aptonic Software. Cory mentioned it back in early beta, but it's come a long way since then. Dropzone lets you set up "destinations," and when you click its icon in the dock it pops up a HUD-style window with icons for each destination. You can drop files and text onto each icon, or have them launch apps and run scripts with a click. It comes with ready-made destinations for everything from Flickr uploading of dropped images to zipping and emailing a collection of dropped files. The beauty of Dropzone is that the average user can set up all of the destinations they would normally launch other apps for, but users in more advanced stages of geekery can construct their own destinations using the Ruby-based Dropzone API.

My personal Dropzone setup includes destinations for creating projects or opening files in TextMate, opening a folder in GitX, sending files to my Amazon S3 account (puts a publicly-accessible url in my clipboard), filing based on OpenMeta tags, mounting and unmounting FireWire drives, making quick Backpack reminders, and the list goes on. I've even got one that scans dropped text for "http://" links and creates a for me. Some of these scripts I've written, some were just a matter of customizing the existing destinations. Either way, I've got all of these capabilities no more than a click or drag away.

Creating your own destinations just requires a little Ruby-fu. "But I'm the farthest thing from a level 12 Ruby Mage," you say. Don't sweat it, let the community do it for you. Several scripts from my personal setup, along with a great selection of others, are available in the user-contributed actions section of the Aptonic Software website. Additionally, included actions like the application launcher allow full customization just by selecting the application to trigger.

Dropzone is available for a free trial, and can be had for $10US. Give it a try and see if it doesn't speed up your workflow. If you create any scripts you'd like to share, be sure to let the author know!

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