MacOS gives us many different tools to keep us productive. You may end up using your Mac very differently from others. In this article I will share few apps and ways that help me make the most of it. This is going to be an article series and I will start by sharing what is in my menu bar.
MacOS Menu bar
Menu bar sits at the top of the screen and it has two main sections, left and right. Left side shows your current application menus, and it can't be customised. However, all the remaining space on the right can be customised and used to install additional applications. Keep in mind that left side has higher priority and if needed, it will cover the right side. What you can see on the right side will depend on screen width and how many menus current application has.
These are the apps I have installed in the menu bar
Stats - macOS system monitor in your menu bar
I love Stats due to it's aesthetics and level of customization. It helps me keep an eye on CPU, Network and Battery levels. You can configure more metrics in case you need them. I use the Battery metric from Stats as it shows only the percentage vs the built in battery indicator which shows icon plus percentage and therefore taking double the space. You can use this guide to hide MacOS default battery indicator.
Itsycal is a tiny menu bar calendar. If you want, it will display your events as a companion to the Mac Calendar app.
Sometimes, every second counts, therefore I enable the seconds display on the Digital Clock menu bar. However, the built in date display takes too much space. This is where Itsycal comes in. You can configure to show Day, Date, Month and choose a dark/light theme in case you want your Date to stand out. On top of this, once clicked, it shows a calendar month view, which comes in handy when I need to quickly check the dates without opening a calendar app.
Horo is the timer app you need for your menu bar. It’s easy to use, fast, and gives you exactly what you need.
This one I love because of it's simplicity. I can quickly set a timer or start a stopwatch. Once timer runs out, there is audible alert to remind you it's over. This comes in pretty handy when I'm coding and cooking, a dangerous combo btw :)
Missing piece :)
I wish I could share another app that perfectly fits into menu bar, and that would be a weather app. There are some great options, but they are not free. This is why I started my own project to make a simple and free Weather app for your menu bar. But, more on that in the upcoming posts.
In case you want to reorder those menu bar apps, hold down the CMD key and drag the app with your mouse into desired place. In case you keep those default apps, make sure to check out System preferences -> Dock & Menu Bar and customize the options to your liking. For example, I removed Spotlight and Siri as I don't use them from the menu bar. No need to have that clutter over there.
If you want to see what other cool menu bar applications exist, check out this curated directory of MacOS menu bar apps.
In this article I shared how I customize my menu bar. In the following articles, I will share further customizations and apps I have in my setup. Things like window manager, Spotlight replacement (not Alfred btw), productivity apps, browser extensions, etc.. So if you find this content interesting, make sure to follow my blog and share it with your friends.
How about you
Now it's your turn, what menu bar app do you use? What customizations do you apply to your menu bar? Share your feedback in the comments.
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