Bardeen Basics

Getting started with Bardeen

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Welcome to Bardeen! 


In this tutorial, you will learn the fundamentals of Bardeen and how to get the most out of the tool.


But first, how is Bardeen different from every other automation tool? Bardeen allows you to participate in the automation! In other words, you can trigger automations manually (with a click), provide inputs, and even use the content from the currently opened page. 


The average person spends about 60% on our computers doing manual tasks. Let’s change that forever!


💡 Note: if you don’t have Bardeen installed, click here to get it.


Start with automations from the catalog

Bardeen is a browser extension and is always just a shortcut away. Try launching Bardeen by hitting Option + B (⌥ + B)!


When you launch Bardeen, you will see pre-built automations from our catalog. These automations are curated based on the page that you are currently on. 


For example, if you launch Bardeen from zoom.us/recording, you will see relevant Playbooks such as “Upload Zoom recording to Google Drive.” 



Go to the expanded view inside the extension window to explore more Playbooks from different categories and apps. 



The same automation catalog is on our website. It has additional details, templates to duplicate, use cases, and video tutorials. So check it out as well.



Build your own automation

By now, you should have gotten a feel for Bardeen and ran a few pre-built automation from our catalog. It’s time to build your own!


We put automations into two categories: Playbooks and Autobooks. 

Playbooks are the automations that you launch manually. And Autobooks are the automations that get triggered automatically when something happens — more about them in the next section.


Both Playbooks and Autobooks are created inside the Builder.


To open the Builder, click on the big “Create Playbook” button. A new window will open with the canvas and the sidebar with apps and actions. 


All automations are just a series of actions connected to each other. First, think about a manual workflow that you often do. Then, break it into individual steps.


For example, let's build a playbook that creates a Github issue and sends a Slack notification. The first action is to create a Github issue. Let's connect Github, and add action - “create a Github issue.”


Almost all actions need some inputs to run. You can’t create a task without a title. So, in this case, “title” is the required argument for that action.

Now, let’s think about what the task title should be. The title will be different every time we run this playbook. Select “ask me every time” to specify an argument every time you run your playbook. 


Let’s move on to the next action in this playbook – send a Slack message. We want to send a Slack message with the title and the link to the Github task that we’ve just created in the previous action.


To get data from previous actions, click on the input box and select the relevant action. 



Import a playbook from the catalog

Often, we need to create multiple variations of the same playbook. Take meeting reminders, for example. All reminders will have different contents but consist of the same action. One playbook will send an email about running late, another one about waiting in the meeting room, and one more reminding that the meeting begins in 15 minutes.


Instead of creating each playbook from scratch, you can import actions from an existing playbook. This will speed up the process of creating Playbooks drasticly. An excellent hack to save even more time!


Autobooks: triggered automations

We call automations with a trigger - Autobooks. You can turn any Playbook into an Autobook by adding a trigger in the beginning. 


Bardeen has two types of triggers: scheduled and when something happens. 


The scheduled trigger fires on a schedule. To configure this trigger, set the following variables: 

  • Starting date
  • Frequency
  • Day of the week
  • When to stop (never, on a date, after several runs)



Scheduled triggers are often used for repetitive tasks such as sending reports. Marketers may send screenshots of the Google Analytics dashboard to Slack. And salespeople may email a spreadsheet of their scheduled calls for the week to their supervisor. 



The second trigger type fires when something happens in your web apps. This allows your apps to talk to each other without you as the middleman.


Browse through the triggers for your favorite apps. 


And as always, the best way to start building Autobooks is to get inspiration from the pre-built ones from our catalog


Explore contextual actions

Contextual actions unlock the new possibilities for workflows to automate. They will help you do things faster and without any copy-pasting or shuffling tabs.


Here is a list of contextual actions to try:

  • Scrape data. Extracts data from any website.
  • Get data from tabs. Gets titles and URLs of your opened tabs.
  • Show a browser notification. Displays custom notifications.
  • Get page HTML. 
  • Click on an element.
  • Fill out a form.
  • Open tabs. Enables launching meeting links automatically.
  • Get current time.
  • Trigger: when you right-click on a specific website.
  • Trigger: when you open a specific website.


One great tool to help save you from copy-pasting is our Scraper. It allows you to extract data fields using a template from any website. 


For example, if you need to save LinkedIn profile data to your CRM, no need to copy-paste data manually. Just create a scraper template and link the data to your CRM. This playbook will do the job for you with a single click. 


Explore the scraper tutorial to learn more.


Playbook suggestions

The hardest part of workflow optimization is figuring out what to automate. 


This is where the majority of people fall into two categories. The first one doesn’t automate anything because they think it’s easier to “just do it” and move on. And the second group spends more time building automations than those automations will save them.


This is why we’ve built Playbook Suggestions. It will show you the right automation in the perfect moment!

Our suggestions use artificial intelligence to analyze the context, such as the currently opened tabs and your connected apps.


We’ve turned off Suggestions by default as we are still fine-tuning the algorithms. But you can turn on Suggestions in the dropdown menu and try it out.



We believe that intelligent algorithms should build automation based on your repetitive tasks, so you don’t have to think about it. Automations building automations is our equivalent of the von Neumann probe - the self-replicating machines. Reducing barriers to automating workflows is the key to making the world more productive.


FAQ

What apps do you integrate with?

Bardeen integrates with 30+ apps, and we add new integrations weekly. 


Here are just some of them:

Airtable, Notion, Google Sheets, Google Calendar, Google Drive, Dropbox, ClickUp, Jira, Github, Asana, Coda, Clearbit, Gmail, OpenAI, Pipedrive, Slack, Telegram, WhatsApp, Trello, Twitter, WebEx, Zoom, Google Docs.



We plan to expand the list of integrations starting Q2 of 2022 drastically. Do you want to integrate a particular app with Bardeen? Let us know!


Bardeen also supports HTTP GET and POST actions. Webhooks are also on our roadmap.


What happens to my Autobooks when my computer is off

When your computer is off, your triggered Playbooks (Autobooks) will not run until your computer is back online. 


When the computer is online again, Bardeen will check if any of your Autobooks were triggered. If the Autobooks were triggered, Bardeen will execute them right away.


Later this year, we will launch cloud automations, which will run Autobooks even if your computer is offline.


What is Bardeen Classic, and how do I get it? 

The first idea for Bardeen we had was a natural language for APIs. It had commands like “create a new Github ticket” or “get all my Google calendar events.”


But we soon realized that most non-engineers prefer building automations visually. Hence, Bardeen 2.0 and the version that you are seeing right now. 


Many of us still love the keyboard-friendly interface of the original Bardeen (we call it Classic now). To try it press Option ⌥ + O. 


How secure is Bardeen?

Very! We keep all of your data secure and follow security best practices. 


When you connect apps, your data stays in your browser’s storage and cache layers. Your data doesn’t touch our servers. 


No third-party extension or website can access information stored in your browser unless someone gets physical access to your computer. 


Every year, we work with an independent third-party security firm and get certified. 


We will NEVER sell or share any of your data with any third party. Visit our security page to learn more or get in touch for more information.

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Bardeen - One-click automations for your repetitive tasks | Product Hunt
Bardeen - One-click automations for your repetitive tasks | Product Hunt