Automating everything!

Updated April 3, 2018

For the past year or so, I have tried to automate as many items in my personal and work life as I could. Below is a short list of the products I am currently using.


  • Amazon Echo – I have a total of 3 throughout the house
  • Google Home
  • Google WiFi
  • Zapier – mostly to automate work tasks
  • Nest thermostat
  • Ring doorbell
  • Hue Lights – 6 lamps, 2 mantle lights and one strip
  • Harmony Hub – not only does this give me one remote that works with all my devices, but I can also use my voice to turn the devices on as well. 🙂
  • Logitech Circle – I currently have two, but not sure where to connect the second one
  • Wemo – was used to turn on my Christmas Tree lights, however, now it’s not currently used
  • Rachio – smart Irrigation controller (a side blog post is coming about this device).

If you have suggestions of other products I should try, please leave a comment.


Configure Your ShareFile Outlook Plug-in Account Wide Settings

Typically an admin will want to lock in ShareFile sharing settings for all their employees, specifically for those using the ShareFile Outlook Plug-in (OLP). Luckily, with the OLP you can do this, though historically you had to contact ShareFile’s support staff. However, not too long ago, ShareFile updated their ‘Admin’ section within the ShareFile Web Application to allow admins to configure their OLP without needing to contact support. To configure your OLP settings follow these simple steps:

  1. Log into your ShareFile account as an admin with the permission to ‘Modify account-wide policies’
  2. Navigate to the following pages:
    1. ‘Admin’
    2. ‘PowerTools’
  3. Click ‘Configure Outlook Plug-in’

From this modal you can configure important security settings such as whether or not recipients of files/emails sent through the OLP must log into ShareFile before consuming the share, how long the link is live for, how many downloads of the file before the share link will expire and even customize what the OLP banner looks like.

To make changes, select a specific tab on the left, find the section you wish to customize and make your change. Note, ‘Set as default’ is only the default for that option and the end-user can change the setting as they see fit within the OLP Options page from within Outlook. While on the other hand, ‘Prevent user changes’ will lock in the settings and prevent a user from changing them within the OLP Options page.

Right click a file to send with ShareFile Outlook Plug-in

It has come to my attention that many people do not know you can send a file using the ShareFile Outlook Plug-in but instead of starting in Outlook, you can simply right click the file from your desktop or from windows explorer.

To do this follow these simple steps:

  • Locate the file you want to send
  • Right click the file and select “Send to” followed by “Mail Recipient with ShareFile”
  • A new email message auto loads with the file attached using the ShareFile Outlook Plug-in
  • Finish the email (add who to send the file today, subject, body, etc.)
  • Send you finished email

Apple TV Aerial Screensaver for Mac

I came across this gem the other day from a colleage, Pete, and wanted to share with everyone:

As mentioned by John Coates, “Aerial is a Mac screen saver based on the new Apple TV screen saver that displays the aerial movies Apple shot over New York, San Francisco, Hawaii, China, etc.” To me the best part is that you can either have the screensaver stream the latest aerials or you can download them locally so they work offline. If you stream, the aerials are loaded directly from Apple meaning you are never out of date!