Time-lapse Calculator App with Apple Shortcuts

My name is Chris and in this video I will
show you how to build a Time-lapse Calculator
with the Apple Shortcuts App.
Before we get started.
Let’s take a look what the final app will
look like.
We will have an app icon like this on our
home screen to start the time-lapse shortcut directly.
When you open the app it will ask you for
the start and end time to calculate the total
duration of the event.
Then it will ask you for the desired duration
of the resulting clip.
And also how many Frames per Second you want
in the final clip.
At the end it will show you how many photos
you will have to take and the shooting interval.
With this information you can adjust the time-lapse
settings in your camera.
O.k. now let me show you how you can build
this time-lapse calculator on your own.
First you will need the Shortcuts App from
With iOS 13 it comes as one of the apple default
With older iOS versions you have to download
the app for free from the App Store.
When you start the app you will see this screen.
Let’s create a new shortcut.
A shortcut consists of a series of actions.
So let’s add our first action.
If you know already the name of the action
you can search for it directly or you can
browse the categories to find an action you
Let’s select the category for Scripting.
And here we scroll down all the way until
we reach Notifications.
Let’s select “Ask for Input”.
So as the first input we will ask for the
“Start time”.
Then we click on “Show More” and change
the Input Type from “Text” to “Date and Time”.
O.k. now let’s collapse the “Show More”
Then we add a second “Ask for Input” Action
to get the end time of our event.
Again we select “Date and Time” as the
Input Type.
Next we have to calculate the time between
these two dates.
Therefore we search for the Calendar action
called “Get Time Between Dates”.
O.k. now let’s change the field where it
says “Current Date” to our “Start time”.
First we delete “Current date” and then
we click on this little magic wand icon which
will allow us to select a Magic Variable.
Now we select the first label below “Start
time” where it says “Provided Input”.
I like to rename my variables to improve the
readability of my shortcut.
So let’s first click on “Provided Input”
and then “Rename”.
Let’s call this variable “startTime”.
And then we do the same for the end time.
Therefore let’s click on the second label
called “Provided Input”.
First let’s delete it and select the magic
wand icon again to select the second magic
variable called “Provided Input”.
This we will rename to “endTime”.
The third parameter in this action we will
leave at “Minutes”, because we want to
show this in our final results.
But for the time-lapse calculation we will
need the duration also in seconds so let’s
calculate it.
Therefore we search the action called “Calculate”.
It shows already “Time between dates”
which is the result of the previous action.
You can see that there is this little grey
connection line between the actions which
means that it will take the result from the
previous action and feed it into this action.
But for better readability of our script let’s
rename it to “durationInMinutes”.
And then we multiply it by 60 to get the duration
in seconds.
Next let’s ask for Input again.
This time we want to know the desired clip
length in seconds.
The input type should be number.
Then we ask for
the desired frames per second and select again
number as input type.
O.k. now we have everything complete to make
the final calculations.
So let’s add another calculate action.
First we select the magic variable from the
clip length and rename it to “clipLengthInSeconds”.
Then we multiply it with the frames per second
to know how many photos we will have to shoot
in total.
Now that we have the total number of photos
we can calculate the shooting interval.
For this we take the durationInSeconds and
divide it by the total number of photos.
As a final step we will round the number of
the shooting interval to make it more readable
in the results.
At the end we will present the results with
the “Show alert” action where we can combine
our variables with text.
The title of our alert message will be “Time-lapse
And in the body of the alert message we will
show the results.
So first we type “Total time” and then
we use the magic wand to select our variable
with the durationInMinutes.
And then we repeat the process for the other
values that we want to present in the results.
And that’s how it should look like at the
Before saving let’s double check our shortcut.
We ask for the start and end time with the
input type “Date and Time”.
Then we calculate the duration.
Then we ask for the clip length and the frames
per second with the input type number.
And finally we make the calculation and present
the results.
Looks good to me.
Now we can press on “Next” in the upper
right corner.
Here we give our Shortcut a name and select
an icon.
If we press on these three dots we can add
the shortcut to our Home Screen.
And that’s it.
If you made it this far in my video and found
this video helpful leave me a like.
For more videos like this subscribe and I
see you in the next one.
Bye, bye.

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