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With If This Then That (IFTTT), automation is the name of the game. The web-based service that allows users to create "recipes" that trigger events based on simple conditional statements has added three additional features that put control of the action squarely in your hands.
Much like existing recipes, the new apps are of the "do" type but instead of waiting for a condition to trigger an event, you get to manually trigger the events.
For starters, there's the "do button" - a virtual button that, when tapped, performs a digital action that might otherwise require multiple steps. For example, a simple tap could set your Nest thermostat to your preferred temperature or turn your connected lights on or off.
The "do camera" app can combine the function of your camera with an action of your choice. For example, you can snap a photo and it'll automatically be uploaded to the social network of your choice or sent via e-mail to a family member.
"Do note" is more or less a programmable notepad that lets you send a memo to yourself with the touch of a button or add something to an existing notebook in Evernote.
These are of course only crude suggestions. The beauty of IFTTT is that you can come up with all sorts of nifty applications and digital shortcuts to make your life easier. The service ties in with more than 170 different services including littleBits, SMS, and YouTube.