Bar Tending

17 December 2009

Today I posted a screenshot of my menubar via Twitter, noting how ridiculous I thought it was getting. Grant Blakeman said it best in his reply:

the top-right of the osx menu is the bastard step-child of window’s task-bar. i often won’t use a program if there is no hide option

He also noted in a followup response that developers have gotten into a bad habit of assuming their app deserves (or requires) ubiquitous accessibility. I agree.

Later, I audited my menubar and revised it:

My menubar

From left to right: Droplr, Dropbox, VPN (built-in), Battery status, Wi-Fi, date and clock, Accounts (built-in), and Spotlight.

(Worth noting: this is my work computer. My personal laptop doesn’t include the VPN or Accounts icons.)

I removed the Tweetie icon because, while I like the subtle notifications it provides, there’s no (supported) way to remove the Dock icon, so the menubar icon was repetitive.

I removed the Pastebot Sync icon because, well, it’s not really necessary. In my real-world tests, Pastebot has worked flawlessly, without the need for access to the Preference Pane.

I quit ExpanDrive and removed it from Login Items because I haven’t been using it lately. If and when I need it, I can launch the app.

I removed the MobileMe Sync icon because I rarely need to manually initialize a synchronization operation.

I removed the Sound icon because I have access to audio controls on my keyboard.

Interestingly, I got quite a few replies with screenshots to my tweet:

And I thought my menubar was bad.