Automatic is one of our favorite tech tools ever
Want to know what your “Check Engine” light means, or wish that your phone automatically tracked your mileage or tells you how to maximize gas mileage based on your very own driving habits? For around $100, one little gadget you plug into almost any car made after 1996, and no monthly fees, you’ve got Automatic, one of our favorite tech tools made in recent years.
They launched last year and are already knocking socks off of fans. Fast forward to today, and they’ve announced that the gadget can communicate digitally with automation app, IFTTT (if this, then that, the duct tape of the internet that makes technologies talk to each other automatically).
According to the Automatic blog, you can use the Bluetooth device to send messages, keep track of your travel, and keep tabs on your car’s health. Share recipes by existing IFTTT users illustrate the magic that this marriage presents. Genius, really!
Automatic’s new IFTTT channel offers the following triggers:
- Ignition turned on
- Ignition turned on in a specific area
- Ignition turned off
- Ignition turned off in a specific area
- Check engine light turned on
- Check engine light turned off
- Trip completed
Oh, the places you’ll go!
Now, you can make your car communicate automatically without ever touching your smartphone. Set it up to text your spouse when you’re on the way home, or to log all of your trips on a Google Spreadsheet or send it to Evernote, or post to Yammer that you’ve left work, or email a report to your mechanic at the exact moment your check engine light comes on.
The combinations are numerous, and can be serious (“Log all of my workouts to Google Calendar whenever I park at the gym”), silly (“Tweet ‘I’m on a boat’ when I take the Rio Vista car ferry”), hilarious (“Call my spouse immediately if I park in front of a Nevada brothel”) or even kind of sweet (“Congratulate myself over text message when I’ve made it to work”).