I’ve been working on multiple “free time” projects for a while, mostly updates to existing projects. The changelogs have gotten long enough that writing them up has been an imposing task. I have a doing update that turns it into a very capable time tracking/reporting tool, a major update to SearchLink that simplifies syntax and makes it even more flexible, big updates for Marked, and more little things than I can remember without consulting my “what was I doing” log. I figured I’d start the ball rolling with a simple one.

Bitlyize is a System Service that converts all links in the selected text to bit.ly links using an authenticated account. I’ve updated it in a few ways for version 1.5.

  • It generates Amazon affiliate links for any detected Amazon links
  • It does a smarter job of creating iTunes affiliate links
  • It functions better as a command line utility
  • It works as a library that can be included in other Ruby scripts
  • If it receives a single url that’s already shortened (with Bitly), it expands it to the original url

I’ll add a project for it soon and include documentation for the library API and command line options. For now, there are two Services available in the zip file below: Bitlyize, and Bitlyize to Clipboard. The former modifies selected text in place, the latter leaves the original text and puts the results in the clipboard (especially handy for quickly shortening a link in a URL field and pasting it into an email).

Some manual configuration is required. You need a bit.ly API key, and if you want automatic affiliate links, you’ll need to include information for iTunes and/or Amazon affiliate accounts. There’s support for custom Bitly domains as well. To edit, open the Service in Automator and look for the variables at the top of the Run Shell Script action. It’s not the most convenient configuration method, but Services don’t offer a lot of options.

I’m exploring Yosemite extensions right now, and I think this would make a decent one once I start creating them. It would make configuration and usage easier, I hope.

The source code is available here, and you can use it as a CLI or include it as a library (for what it’s worth). Documentation coming soon.

Bitlyize Service v2.0.0

An OS X Service for quickly creating bit.ly short urls

Published 04/30/14.

Updated 12/24/23. Changelog

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