New user impressions

Now, I’m new to this app, and to javascript. I honestly don’t know where to start. I know shortcuts, I know some python, I regularly write bash scripts… but no javascript.

All the example scripts are fine, and I can read them, but could I make one? No.

The online javascript help stuff seems aimed at web, which is fine - but saying ‘ignore this bit’ isn’t that helpful if you already know nothing. You’re trying to take on new information whilst not being clear on the tweaks that don’t apply.

What this app really needs is a little handholding for the neophyte… taking them through ‘Hello World’ and moving on to show all the commands available - with a laser-like focus on the specifics of this app.

Just a tuppence.


Agreed. I have yet to find a really good walkthrough of Javascript for automation — not just Mac JXA, but also javascript as you’d want to use it in shortcuts, Drafts or elsewhere. I’m sure I’m not the only one who’d be willing to pay something for this

I dunno — seems a lot to ask from a free app apparently produced by one guy.

In my experience, the way to learn how to use something new, like Scriptable and JavaScript, is to start with something you want to do and then figure out how to do it with the new thing. Google is your friend here.

If you can program in Python or bash scripts, you can program in any (procedural) language if you’re willing to consult the language’s documentation.

Having something useful for you to accomplish is compelling motivation to put in the effort to learn.

I installed Scriptable a few days ago because
I got tired of manually noting the temperature and humidity before and after my workout bike ride so I could manually average them to memorialize in my Strava feed. A First World problem for sure, but my time is my own. Now I can just run a script in Scriptable and paste into Strava.

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It need not be the same guy…

The trouble with javascript is that it just seems unwieldy to my brain and I cannot seem to get traction with it. I’ve avoided javascript when doing webpages back in the day, opting for server side things like perl/php etc, but with omniJS etc it is looking more important and… well, I cannot get a foothold, let alone see a path up the mountainside.

The syntax just seemed full of arbitrary long nouns and adjectives. To be able to google-fu, you need some semblance of what to go for, or lots of extra time.

The above is either something that will be recognised, or not, but it is my experience.

I hoped getting this app would help me past that stumbling block - wrongly.

So you’d like a Scriptable wiki?

The proof of the pudding is in the eating, but that could work nicely if there were pages devoted to tutorial as well as a dryer reference (and it is promoted in app)

It is at this point I expect “Here it is! Start here for tutorial 1”

At which point I think “but it still needs in-app promotion” and then say “Cheers!” :wink:

Personally I would prefer that Simon (the developer) focus his time as he’s been doing — to make the platform stable and powerful. But I agree there could be a lot of value for beginners in a Scriptable-specific tutorial, perhaps written by an enthusiastic user.

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I didn’t think the original post was asking Scriptable’s creator to do something specific. I read it as expressing the hope that someone would do this. That’s my hope, anyway. I’m pretty good with Python, and taught myself some PHP before that — and some Applesoft Basic and TUTOR before those — but JavaScript is proving harder, in part because so much of what’s out there is meant to teach its use within web pages.

Indeed. Who writes the thing is irrelevant.

I’d just want it laser-focussed and assuming zero prior JavaScript, but going through to a level where you have seen the commands available (even if they’ve not been drummed in…

…(and ideally, linked to really obviously from the app)