Monday, 8 August 2011


(Disclaimer: I downloaded Lion yesterday; maybe there's an easier, way of doing this, and I just haven't seen it yet. Please let me know if there is!)

OS X Lion's Launchpad feature is groovy. Swipe 3 fingers and a thumb on your trackpad to view an overlay with all of your installed apps, then drag'n'drop to reorganise them, iOS-style.

Launchpad insists on showing all of your apps, but you can bury unwanted ones in folders, or use Andreas Ganske's Launchpad-Control preference pane to hide them

After I downloaded Lion, I spent way too much time tinkering with Launchpad, but then realised I wanted to store document folders in there as well.

Automator made it happen! How? Because Automator lets you make apps…so if you want a folder to appear in Launchpad, just make an app to open that folder.

It's easy:

1. Launch Automator, and choose Application as Document Type.

2. Choose 'Get Specified Finder Items'. Add your chosen folder, let's say Movies.

3. Choose 'Open Finder Items'. Leave it set to 'Open with: Default Application'

4. Now save the application - give it the same name as the target folder. You might want to create a special folder for your custom apps.

5. Use Get Info and copy paste to assign the same icon as the target folder.

6. Now use the Launchpad 3 finger + thumb gesture, and your folder shortcuts are right there with the apps! The entire bottom row in this screen shot are folder shortcuts.

It's fun. Time will tell if there's any point to it or not :-)

If you want to see more Automator stuff, watch my tutorial movie on


  1. Thank you!
    I've used Quicksilver but as Lauchpad is already there, I thought I give it a try... I use Mac in Finnish, so there are two names for same apps and folders... A finnish one I can see in finder and an English one I can use to trigger from Launchpad/Quicksilver. I've used to trigger for example Downloads by typing Dow... but I'd like it to be Lataukset as it shows up in Launchpad etc... So what I'm asking is if U know how to add triggers other than the app name?


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