Dropzone: Drag and Drop Productivity App for Mac

Update: Contest is over folks! Licenses have been sent with the exception of those who participated on Twitter. Here are the six winners:
  1. Rob (via Twitter)
  2. arjunphlox (via Twitter)
  3. Jonathan
  4. Dougg
  5. Gines
  6. rhett

You’ve just downloaded an application for your Mac. What do you do? You double click it and install it. Then, you move the app over to your Applications folder. Lastly, you move the DMG file to the Trash so it won’t clutter your desktop all afternoon.

With Dropzone, this is all done for you.

You have a wicked picture on your computer you want to share on Flickr. What do you do? You upload the image to Flickr of course. But once you’re there, there are numerous steps you must undergo: select the appropriate files, click upload, give it a name and a description, and you’re finally done.

With Dropzone, this is all done for you.

You want to zip a file and attach it to an email you are planning to send. What do you do? You zip the file, open up your email client, attach the zip file and write your email.

With Dropzone, this is all done for you.

I think you get my point.


Dropzone is a handy tool that acts as your sidekick that can handle the common tasks you perform on your computer in only a fraction of the time. With its intuitive drag and drop interface, Dropzone allows you to automate repetitive tasks with ease.

Dropzone sits on your dock like any other application on your Mac. For example, if you want to upload a file via FTP or print a document, just drag the file over to the Dropzone icon. A pop up menu will appear, displaying the various destination icons you’ve included. From there, drag the file over to the destination you want and Dropzone will do all the heavy lifting. A progress bar will show up immediately and before you know it, Dropzone is done. Here’s a demonstration:

Extend Dropzone

By default, Dropzone includes about ten destinations. If you want to add more, you can download more add-ons for free from the application’s website. Some of them include:

  • Dropbox – Share files via Dropbox by copying them to your Dropbox Public folder and putting the URL on the clipboard.
  • bit.ly – A dropped URL will be converted to a bit.ly URL.
  • Twitpic – Share photos on Twitpic.
  • Print – Drag and drop documents to print.
  • Desktop Picture – Dropped images will be set as the default desktopwallpaper.

Conclusion:

Dropzone core value lies in its ability to handle the repetitive steps behind a regular task for you. As a result, you’ll be saving a ton of time and be able to focus on the things that matter more.

However, there is something that I wasn’t so sure about. Most of the destinations are tasks I don’t perform on a regular basis. Dragging files to print seemed like a great idea at first, but then I realized that I always view the document in my text editor before printing it to make corrections and adjustments, usually within the same program. Uploading pictures to Flickr or Twitpic is another example. Nice to have, but since I don’t use those services with much frequency, it’s not so useful for me.

The FTP upload shortcut is also limited by the fact that it only uploads to a single predefined location on your web server. Usually when I upload files to my web server, there are multiple locations I want to target.

Despite these limited options, there’s hope with Dropzone. As I mentioned earlier, you can download add-ons to Dropzone to extend its functionality. These add-ons were contributed by users who utilized the Dropzone API. To the average user, that means nothing. Most people don’t know code, nor do they want to put the effort into learning how to create their own custom add-ons.

Currently, Dropzone is limited by one thing: its lack of destinations. However, Dropzone was launched only recently in July 2010. Hopefully, the coming months will lead to more add-ons to download. There’s a ton of promise behind this app. Right now, it feels like I’ve signed a contract with a 16 year-old baseball prospect; there are flashes of brilliance but the results aren’t showing up yet.

Notes:

The current version of Dropzone at the time of writing is 0.3.3. The app retails for $14, which you can purchase from the Aptonic website.

  • fellowweb

    Dropzone is great. Thanks for your article and nice blog!

    Here’s my tweet, too: http://twitter.com/fellowweb/status/22607953382

  • http://creativeculturemedia.com Jonathan Kratzke

    I would love to have this!

  • Rhett

    S’pose I should drop my name in the hat for Dropzone.

  • Dougg Johnson

    Dropzone Rocks! I love the trial version and would love to win this.

  • Gines

    How’s it going Tony? You know I don’t use a Mac but I know someone who could take advantage of Drop Zone. I’ll give it to him if I win.

    Have a good one.

  • thewriteway

    This thing is so functional and fast!
    YES PLEASE.

  • http://t2share.com t2share

    This thing is so functional and fast!
    YES PLEASE.

    • http://loneplacebo.com/about Tony Hue

      Yep! You should definitely try it out on your Mac!