If you want your Dropbox account to do more than simply store your files, the new web tool Dropbox Automator might be worth your while. Once you link up your Dropbox account, you can specify folders and have specific actions performed on files once they are added to those folders. For example, just upload a photograph to a designated location and Dropbox Automator can upload it to Flickr or Facebook, complete with pre-designated tags. Or it can make a PDF out of a word document, ZIP it up, and email it to a specific email account. It's very similar in many ways to "If This Then That," a service focused on automatic social network behaviors (like automatically sending Tweets when you upload photos to Facebook, for example).
The service was built by WappWolf, who already offers a website for batch uploading or editing of documents and photos — Dropbox Automator improves on it by always monitoring your folders for changes rather than the one-time processing offered on the WappWolf site. Unfortunately, you'll need to be patient if you want to use Dropbox Automator. In some quick testing we did, photo uploading to Facebook and Flickr was successful, but took around 20 minutes. The same delay occurred when it tried to convert a Word document to a PDF and ZIP the new file — and the ZIP file was never able to be successfully uncompressed on our Mac. Right now, the service isn't exactly the easiest or quickest solution, but there's a lot of potential here for Dropbox addicts. It's entirely free as well, so there's nothing to lose by giving a shot.