PDF to Image, or How I Stopped Hating Concur and Started Loving Shortcuts

February 16, 2020 by Gabe | [mmd] |

One of the worst parts of traveling for work is using Concur for expense report submission.1 The entire system is obtuse and slow. But the worst part is that receipts are not accepted as PDFs. They must be images. While this is insane to me, there’s no arguing with a monolith. So I made an iOS shortcut.

PDF to Photo

This is a dead simple shortcut. I select a PDF with the document picker. It then converts the PDF to images and stitches them together vertically. Finally, it saves the image to the photo library.

Here's a companion shortcut that works with PDFs through the iOS share sheet:

Share PDF

I think stuff like this is the sweet spot for Shortcuts. Every time I build something that is more than about 15 actions, I regret it or end up not using it. These tiny point-solutions are a fantastic way to get more value from iOS and fill some of the basic gaps in the system.

Concur is still terrible but at least now I can spend slightly less time using it.

  1. Hahaha. Just kidding. The worst part is everything about traveling for work. 

Older articles

  1. Plain Text Shortcut

    February 16, 2020 by Gabe | [mmd] |

    A few weeks ago I was trying to share a link I copied from the Safari sharing sheet on iOS. Every time I tried to paste the link in a web form the clipboard seemed empty.

    I made this really simple but incredibly useful shortcut to solve the problem. The ...

  2. Home Screen Shortcuts for Productivity

    December 18, 2018 by Gabe | [mmd] |

    I'm fully on the bandwagon of using home screen shortcuts on iOS. The Automators podcast had a nice discussion about the pros and cons. Coincidentally I've been using a folder on my dock for iPad to get to my most commonly used OmniFocus, DEVONthink, Day One, and Fantastical ...

  3. Clipboard Shortcuts with Siri

    November 01, 2018 by Gabe | [mmd] |

    While I'm frustrated by some of Shortcuts gaps, it has solved some long standing problems. I use apps like Drafts less because I can do basic clipboard transformations with Shortcuts, triggered by Siri. Here are a few the clipboard Shortcuts I use the most.

    Paste to Drafts

    This is ...

  4. A Siri Shortcut to Share as a Markdown File

    October 24, 2018 by Gabe | [mmd] |

    The Problem

    I'm a big fan of Drafts for iOS. It's a terrific writing environment and it can integrate with just about anything through URL schemes. But, URL schemes have a major limitation when I write long blocks of text. A URL can only support a finite number ...