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A snitch of a screensaver

They say Mac software has a personality of its own, and it’s true. Just that sometimes one has personality clashes, if you know what I mean.

I was bored with the default screensavers on the Mac and decided to install BigClock, which basically displays the time and date in a huge font on the screen. The screensaver was installed, tested, and I was happily off for lunch.

Now, when I came back to my desk, and not only is the current time and date displayed in huge font across both my screens, but also this message: “away for 72 minutes“. Now, I don’t know about you, but to me, a screensaver that starts a stopwatch the moment you go off your desk and shouts the time out to everyone who cares to look, is a screensaver that needs to be fixed. It doesn’t help that my desk is right next to a large window through which anyone going through the corridor outside can have a full view of my workspace.

This sort of thing can’t be allowed, of course. I can imagine the e-mail from my advisor on one of my off days. “I was walking by the lab and noticed that you were away for 363 minutes. Whats going on?

And I wouldn’t have missed this major bug earlier if the screensaver weren’t so smart – it doesn’t start displaying the away minutes immediately, but probably waits for five or ten minutes for you to really disappear before telling on you. Diabolic, isn’t it? Fortunately, there’s an option called “show away time” which can be unset in the preferences. But I wonder if there are other nasty surprises in store…

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