Talk to the watch. And watch it tweet:

I have been using a service called IFTTT to automate a lot of processes – and I just figured out a new one:

I can send a tweet by speaking into my Apple Watch.

This may look like a lot of steps but you can do everything in 5-10 minutes:

To set up the process at IFTTT:

• Get your free account at
• Click on your name and select “Create” from the drop menu.
• Click “This.”
• Select “SMS.”
• Click “Send IFTTT any SMS.”
• Follow the instruction to get your SMS number from IFTTT.
• Click “Create trigger.”
• Click “That.”
• Select “Twitter.”
• Connect with your Twitter account.
• Click “Post a tweet” under “Choose an Action.”
• Leave “Message” in the “Tweet text” box.
• “Create Action” and save.

To set up your watch:

• Add the IFTTT SMS number to your iPhone address book.
• Add new new IFTTT address entry to “Friends” from inside the Apple Watch app.
• Set the Messages preference inside the Apple Watch app to “Audio Messages: Always Dictation.”

To execute:

• Press the side button on the Apple Watch.
• Select IFTTT from friends.
• Press the text bubble icon.
• Press the microphone icon.
• Speak into the watch.
• View the text.
• Press “Send.”

This may sound like a lot of commands, but it’s very intuitive and takes just a few seconds.

Save the recipe:

IFTTT Recipe: Send a tweet by speaking to your Apple Watch connects sms to twitter


• I can say “period” or “question mark” to punctuate, but I’m having no luck with the “@-sign.”
• I can’t seem to backspace either.
• I can’t attach links.
• And I can only guess if I am close to the 140-character limit.


I also use IFTTT to trigger several kinds of public and private alerts when I get an email with specific titles or contents. Another “awesome recipe” posts my Instagram photos to Twitter, rather than just posting the image URL.

Stop the Violence! ..with solutions-oriented reporting:

I am very pleased to announce that I am now scheduled to teach a course this spring in the Journalism Department at Temple University, bringing together my interests in both reporting and violence prevention:

Course title:

Addressing violence through solutions-oriented reporting

Course description:

Solutions journalism is rigorous and compelling reporting about responses to social problems, using the best available evidence while examining the whole picture — the problem and the response.

This course will introduce students to strategies for addressing violence in the news by reporting examples of people working toward solutions, how they do so and the impact of their efforts.

Students will report on violence reduction initiatives with the intent of informing and empowering news communities to pursue meaningful change. Priority registration begins this Wednesday, October 28th.

Students: Register for J3800.001 in Spring 2016: We will meet on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 2-3:20 p.m. in Tuttleman 400AB.

Download the course flyer.


This course will embrace the practices of the Solutions Journalism Network, which has previously led a presentation and workshop at the Center for Public Interest Journalism, which I manage at Temple.

Just last month, I had the great fortune to attend “Reducing and Preventing Violence: Strengthening Reporting About What Works,” a symposium presented by The Center on Media, Crime and Justice at John Jay College of Criminal Justice — in conjunction with the Solutions Journalism Network.

I began practicing solutions journalism directly while managing the Gun Crisis Reporting Project from 2012 through 2014 and I presented on that topic during the “Covering Guns” workshop last spring in Phoenix, organized by the Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma, where I am a past fellow.

The Gun Crisis project was heavily inspired by Dart’s 2011 workshop at WHYY in Philadelphia: “Getting it Right: Reporting on Youth Violence.” I also spoke during Dart’s 2013 symposium at Columbia University: “Sandy Hook and Beyond.”

Temple Journalism presented my first opportunity to create a course — on Journalism and Psychological Trauma – which I taught in 2008 and 2009. I also created course on Peace Journalism, which I taught at for two years Swarthmore College, while I was the Journalist in Residence for War News Radio.

Photo at top of page: Homicide memorial, Camden, NJ, 2012. Photo by Jim MacMillan

#SeeForever: Check out the view from the One World Observatory

The One World Observatory at One World Trade Center prompts visitors to share their photos on social media using the #SeeForever hashtag. Here are a few of my photos from a recent visit:

One World Trade Center:

A photo posted by Jim MacMillan (@jimmacmillan) on

Looking uptown from One World Trade this afternoon: A photo posted by Jim MacMillan (@jimmacmillan) on

One more from the observatory at One World Trade yesterday:

A photo posted by Jim MacMillan (@jimmacmillan) on

Three views of Philadelphia City Hall in one day

Evening in Philly, part two:

A photo posted by Jim MacMillan (@jimmacmillan) on

Evening in Philadelphia:

A photo posted by Jim MacMillan (@jimmacmillan) on

Later that same night in Philadelphia:

A photo posted by Jim MacMillan (@jimmacmillan) on