Martin Ström

Push notifications for Things Touch (iPhone/iOS) using Prowl

While waiting for Things Touch to officially support push notifications I hacked my own solution based on Prowl and my own Ruby library for Things, things-rb.


  1. I’ve setup Dropbox to share my Things database betweeen my laptop and a computer at home which is always online.

  2. Buy and install Prowl on your iOS device.

  3. On the home computer/server, install things-rb:

    $ (sudo) gem update --system # if you're on an older RubyGems version
    $ (sudo) gem install things-rb

  4. ..and the prowl gem to talk to the Prowl API

    $ (sudo) gem install prowl

  5. Save this file somewhere (like ~/bin/prowl_things.rb)

  6. Setup a cronjob to run the script as often as you’d like. Mine runs every weekday at 8:45 am.

    45 8 * * 1-5 /usr/bin/ruby /Users/me/bin/prowl_things.rb

A better Mail-to-Things-ToDo script

Until now I’ve been creating todos in Things from Mail messages in OS X using the quick entry built into Things and the “autofill” feature. But I didn’t like that it, by default, created the todos in Things’ Inbox and that I had to manually select text in the mail message to get it as notes (which is important when using Things on your iPhone/iPad when the link back to the mail message doesn’t work).

Instead here’s an AppleScript which will take the selected message(s) and automatically create one task for each email in the “Next” focus in Things. It will then archive the mail messages and show a Growl notification. The todos in Things will get tagged with the “Reply” tag (which in my setup is a subtag of “Email”).

The script is a modified version of the one found here. I also put the script in an Automator action like described in the article so you can assign a shortcut key to it without including third party software.

CSS is in progress