The Accidental Systems Librarian, 2nd Edition

Software You May Need to Master: If This Then That (IFTTT)

I was looking for a way to automatically post my Delicious bookmarks to my blog and my friend John LeMasney asked me if I had tried IFTTT yet. IFTTT is a site that lets you program automated actions on the web!

IFTTT is a service that lets you create powerful connections with one simple statement:

If this, then that.

We call ‘this’ the Trigger, and ‘that’ the Action. Together, it is a Recipe.

IFTTT is pronounced like “Lift” without the “L.”

I can see a lot of great systems librarian uses for this tool as well. You can set it up to notify you based on RSS feeds or calendars or so many other things.

For example, if your library uses Google Apps for email and docs you might want to set up a IFFT that notifies you whenever a Google App changes status (like when Gmail is down) before your librarians start calling you to complain.

The full list of channels will probably give you plenty of ideas on how to make your systems life easier.

Creative Commons License

This work by Nicole C. Engard is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

About Nicole C. Engard

Nicole C. Engard is the Vice President of of Education at ByWater Solutions. Her interest in library technology started at the Jenkins Law Library in Philadelphia, where she worked as Web Manager. For her innovative uses of technology in libraries, Engard was named one of Library Journal’s Movers & Shakers in 2007. She keeps the library community up to date on web technologies via her website, “What I Learned Today…” ( She has been published in Computers in Libraries, ONLINE magazine, and Journal of Hospital Librarianship and written chapters for Thinking Outside the Book: Essays for Innovative Librarians and Writing and Publishing: The Librarian’s Handbook.

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