Push notifications solution for custom Twitter searches

I follow several Twitter accounts and like to be notified if they tweet something important with specific hashtags. None of the twitter desktop apps I’ve seen can push out notifications for a custom search. I’ve heard you can do it with Hootsuite if you pay their monthly subscription. I haven’t seen an iOS or Android app to do this either for free. There are several online services which start at about $9/month.

Old Solution

My workaround for Twitter search notifications has been to use an IFTTT applet to play watchdog on specific Twitter accounts and to watch for a certain hashtag then it would send me a text message via an SMS gateway. A Rube Goldberg type of set-up for notifications.

The cons to using IFTTT are:

  • IFTTT applets only perform actions every 15 minutes
  • The set-up can be buggy, I’ve had notifications sent to me hours late

New Solution

TwitPush is a new app in the iOS App Store so I can’t really blame myself for not using it before. It was originally released on January 20, 2017 and was updated on February 7, 2017. This is a good sign amongst so many apps that have been abandoned in the App Store. It looks like the developer is in/from Brazil as they have an app for public transportation, maybe they can do one for Hawaii County but maybe not in Portuguese.

TwitPush is very easy to set-up, is free (there’s an in-app purchase to get rid of ads when viewing your custom search logs) and it works great.

I set-up my custom search following a Twitter account and a specific hashtag and waited to see who would win the notification race between IFTTT and TwitPush. Upon every posting that fell under my custom search TwitPush sent me a notification within about a minute. Notifications were pushed to both my iPhone and my Pebble Time watch and it did this even with TwitPush running in the background on the iPhone.

Quake tweets by USGS
Quake tweets by USGS

If you’re a social media professional and need to get notifications from custom searches then get TwitPush. Let’s say you follow Hawaii 24/7 on Twitter and only want to get notifications when we tweet the hashtags #HItsunami or maybe #hiwx you can do that. Or maybe you follow DC and want a notification as soon as he tweets a BRAINBUSTER you can do it!

Get the app, make your life easier, pay the $0.99 to get the Pro ad-free version to encourage the developer on their great work. I don’t know how long this great app will work as Twitter sometimes cracks down on the usage of their API unless this app is somehow scraping feeds without the API.

If you’re an Android user and know of a good Android solution post something in the comments below and I’ll check it out and update this post.

Here are some screenshots below from the iOS AppStore.

SMS Notifications when Compressor 4 is done with batch processing

Apple’s Compressor 4 is a sloth of an app converting videos and it’s a hassle to perodically check to see when it’s done with its batch processing.

This tutorial will show you how to create an Apple Automator Workflow in which your computer will send you an email or an SMS notification when the job is done.

Note that Apple does have a ‘Send Email’ action in Compressor 4 when the batch is completed BUT it will email, as an attachment, the actual processed video file. Not a good idea to use that action unless you really want to send off a processed video file via email.

What you will need is the Automator Workflow I created, or you can create your own.

Download the workflow: CompressorSMSNotification.zip

Notification00
Automator workflow

Setting-up the workflow

  • Launch Automator and create a new workflow or double-click the one in the zip file
  • Click on Mail in the left window
  • Drag-n-Drop the ‘New Mail Message’ action into the right window
  • Drag-n-Drop the ‘Send Outgoing Messages’ action into the right window under the first action
  • Enter your email address if you’d like to be emailed when the batch is complete. Or use an SMS Gateway to have the notification sent to your cellphone. In the example above replace the 5555555555 with your phone number including the area code if you’re on AT&T. You can also choose which email address account will send the message.
  • Click on the Options tab of each action and set each to ‘Ignore this action’s input’ so it doesn’t send the actual video file to you as an attachment.
  • Hit the ‘Run’ button in the top right of the window as a test. You should recieve an email or sms as a result. If successful congratulations, you’ve created a proper workflow.
  • Go to File>Export to save your modified workflow to the folder of your choice
Notification01
Compressor 4.1.3 window

 

Notification02
Workflow location

In Compressor

  • Click on the clip in the bottom left window to select it, make sure the setting pane is open on the right, if it isn’t click the settings toggle in the upper right of the window.
  • Scroll down to the ‘Action’ setting.
  • Click on the ‘When done’ pop-up menu and choose ‘Run Automator Workflow’
  • Click on the ‘Choose…’ button and select the Notification Workflow you just configured.
  • Start your Batch.

When Compressor is done rendering your movie it will create a new email with the Apple Mail app and send it off to the email address you configured in the workflow. If the Mail app isn’t running the workflow will launch it and send the email.

I would suggest using a small movie as a test to make sure it works.

If you have any questions feel free to email me at baron@mediabaron.com or leave a comment below. If you’ve really found this useful and would like to toss some coin my way you can send bitcoins to my email address.

I hope you enjoy this tutorial. I could not find the answer myself to this problem so I figured it out on my own. I’ve also sent feedback to Apple asking them to put a notifications option in Compressor and Final Cut Pro X apps when renders are done via either email or iMessages.

Note that the ‘When done’ actions are nice in that you could have Compressor render your video and automatically post it to YouTube, Vimeo, etc. I haven’t tried that myself but I assume it works. I usually transfer my files to a second computer connected to the Internet to upload large video to YouTube so I can take my main laptop away from home and not have to do the upload.

Note: This post has been copied to a page under the ‘Software’ drop-down menu here for easy reference. There’s also a bonus hint on that page.