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Print to iPod touch/iPhone via FileMagnet and Automator iOS devices
A while back, this tip appeared, which I really appreciated a lot -- it made it possible for me to turn my mobile phone into a "digital paper." I use this hint daily for flight tickets, shopping lists, important emails, etc. on my mobile phone.

Recently I got an iPod Touch / iPhone. Today I also got the $6 program FileMagnet for my iPod Touch. This program allows me to do wireless transfer of files to my iPod Touch (or iPhone) and view files on my iPod Touch (or iPhone) -- amazing! This was just what I needed to turn the iPod touch into my digital paper. Alas, it involves a number of steps to get a print of a complicated webpage onto the iPod. Consider my electronic flight ticket that I've just bought: First I need to print this one as a PDF from the web page where it's generated, then I need to locate the PDF, then I have to drag-and-drop it into FileMagnet, and then wait for next sync with my iPhone. Finally, I have to delete the generated PDF on my Mac if I do not need this one. That's five steps.

Well, it can be automated easily. Simply make a custom Automator Workflow, which will be empty to start. Add Open Finder Items to the flow, and select FileMagnet as the application. Then save the workflow in /Library/PDF Services -- I called mine Print to iPod Touch.

Now you can print to to FileMagnet from any app using the PDF pop-up menu in the lower left of the Print dialog, and selecting Print to iPod Touch. The file is printed and transferred to FileMagnet where it waits for next sync. That's two steps, and at the same time, it works around the bugs that my iPod has showing complicated doc/ppt/xls files, as it's a PDF that's transferred. (There are no files to be deleted, as the "printed" item goes into /private/tmp, which the system empties once in a while...but if you wish, the original file can be located by clicking the magnifying glass next to the file name in FileMagnet.) You can print to other formats as well if you wish -- but PDF works really well for the iPod Touch/iPhone -- and it insures that the filename of the printed document makes sense without further scripting.

Perfect for my use -- and I think a lot of others can use this too, as this turns our iPods/iPhones into digital paper.
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Print to iPod touch/iPhone via FileMagnet and Automator | 6 comments | Create New Account
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Print to iPod/iPhone touch via FileMagnet and Automator
Authored by: pbeyersdorf on Oct 29, '08 08:01:44AM
You can also see this hint that uses a similar automator workflow in the PDF services to print directly over wifi (rather than waiting for a sync). It works with "air sharing" or other iPod Touch/iPhone software that mounts it as a drive over wifi.

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Print to iPod/iPhone touch via FileMagnet and Automator
Authored by: sune on Nov 01, '08 08:37:58AM

Had not seen the Air Sharing hint before now, but it would not have made much difference for my hint, since it was submitted in August ;-)

This app sounds nice. However, I assume that you must have a working connection between the Mac and the iPod/iPhone for it to work. This in turn requires the app to be running on the iPod/iPhone, I assume? If so, then the FileMagnet is smarter for this exact purpose - because here no active connection is required. Next time you start FileMagnet on the iPod/iPhone, it syncs with the Mac/PC having FileMagnet running.

But I'd like the ability to use the iPod/iPhone as a real drive w/o any software installed on the Mac.

Guess it could be made by printing to a folder on the Mac and then having this autosynced when the AirShared iPod/iPhone is available?

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Print to iPod/iPhone touch via FileMagnet and Automator
Authored by: chrisd on Oct 30, '08 04:03:13AM

Maybe I missed something but here's a much simpler way to do this.

Why don't you mail the PDF to yourself and read the PDF within the mail on the iPhone. (Of course, it implies that you have a mail account setup on your iPhone)

Here're the steps:
In the Print dialog , choose "Send the PDF document by Mail..." item in the PDF popup menu in the lower left.
That should bring a new mail window. Just type your own mail address, add a subject and send.
Wait until the mail comes in the iPhone. Voila...
No need to sync the iPhone.
No need for extra application.

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Print to iPod/iPhone touch via FileMagnet and Automator
Authored by: Mac Berry on Oct 31, '08 04:15:33AM

Well OK if that works for you, but with an IMAP account:

- I now have two copies on my desktop, one in sent and one in inbox, that I don't need. If I delete either, they get deleted on the iPhone too.

- To find a file I have to hunt through all my e-mail on the iPhone.

- I'm snookered if I want to keep the attachment longer than I keep e-mail on my iPhone.

- As you say, I have to enter an e-mail address.

So no, no-where near as useful or clean as the hint, which is extremely handy IMHO.

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Print to iPod/iPhone touch via FileMagnet and Automator
Authored by: sune on Nov 01, '08 08:42:26AM

Agree. However, you could ofcourse have a specific mail account just used for this purpose, I guess.

But you would have a limitation with your file size for most mail accounts. With FileMagnet I've transferred and viewed 1+ GB movies w/o problems.

And then I prefer to be able to do this without the requirement for a working internet connection for both Mac and iPod/iPhone (guess you could do something with the built-in Mac OS X mail-server, but I assume there still might be problems with IP addresses etc).

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Print to iPod touch/iPhone via FileMagnet and Automator
Authored by: trystero on Oct 30, '08 08:05:56AM

there are about a dozen file transfer/document viewer apps for the iphone that will work equally well with this hint. Since I already use dropcopy on the mac, that was the natural choice for me for the iPhone since it also lets me grab the clipboard from my mac, but the others are fine as well. Shop around!

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