The Now Playing Mac Desktop

Lifehacker reader thenerdscribe submitted a desktop that caught our eye. Its minimalism and clean look is a clever use of GeekTool on the Mac.

The wallpaper is custom — pretty much thenerdscribe’s name in a grey dot on a white background, so you could replace that with whatever you like, but the rest of the layout is clean, label-less and easy to enjoy, even if you have windows open. Here’s what you’ll need to tweak your Mac to look the same way:

  • Any wallpaper you like, although we like the custom wallpaper thenerdscribe made for his desktop
  • The GeekTool system monitor and configuration utility for the geeklets and the time/date (which are built-in to GeekTool, just positioned under the centre dot in the wallpaper)
  • The System Info Circular Graphics geeklets to display CPU and RAM utilisation (you can see them by the small arcs under the “now playing” in the upper left of the screen
  • The Bowtie desktop accessory that shows you what’s playing in iTunes
  • The WP7 Theme for Bowtie for the “now playing” display in the upper left corner.
  • The Obsidian Menu Bar and Etched 2D Dock, both from Max Themes

thenerdscribe says that the icons he used are available at DeviantArt, but I’d say they look standard enough to me — feel free to grab a custom icon pack to switch them out though. If you have trouble with GeekTool or the geeklets for the time and date or the system monitoring displays, check out our guide to GeekTool for some tips.

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