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Wednesday, November 10, 2004, 09:00 am PT (12:00 pm ET)

Apple developing \'Automator\' Web site

Apple is reportedly developing a Web site to help promote its upcoming Automator workflow application.

Apple Computer is in the process of developing a resource Web site for its forthcoming "Automator" personal automation assistant, sources close to the computer company tell AppleInsider.

The new Web site is expected to be ready for operation in early 2005, about the same time the company plans to launch its next-generation Mac OS X Tiger operating system, which features the new Automator application.

Using Automator, users can create step-by-step "Workflow" scripts that draw upon a library of actions. Workflows can accomplish tasks ranging from filtering and renaming a batch of images to creating customized Mac OS X Finder actions.

Similar to Apple's iCal Web site, sources expect the Automator site to include helpful user tips and a section where users can submit or share their Automator creations.

Although the site has yet to debut, sources say it's slated to appear at www.apple.com/automator/.

Work on the initial release of Automator continues this month, as Apple refines the application and finalize its user interface. With the most recent builds of the application, the company has removed all script actions associated with its AppleWorks office suite, but provided no explanation.

Automator 1.0, along with Mac OS X 10.4 "Tiger," is set to debut in the first half of 2005, though unconfirmed reports have recently suggested Tiger could debut much earlier than previously anticipated.