How To Add Absolutely Anything To Yosemite’s Notification Center

Justin Pot 19-11-2014

Add anything to Yosemite’s Notification Center – all it takes is the right command.


If there’s a piece of information you wish you could check regularly, you need to know about Today Scripts (download). This simple Mac app gives you the ability to add practically anything to the new Notification Center in Yosemite.


If you’re like most Mac users, you’re still exploring all the new features in OS X Yosemite 10 Useful OS X Yosemite Features You Might Have Missed Ever since OS X Yosemite came out, everyone has been looking to see if they can find the features not so widely reported by Timmy up on his stage. Read More . My personal favourite is the new, expanded Notification Center – which comes complete with Today Widgets, just like on iOS. It’s pretty clear Apple intends for this to replace the long-obsolete Dashboard, and it’s possible to find all the widgets you need to do that These Notification Centre Widgets Make Dashboard Irrelevant The Dashboard is dying. Most users ignore it, and not many developers are building things for it. Replace all of your Mac's Dashboard widgets using the new Today view in Yosemite. Read More right now.

But what if you can’t find a way to add a vital piece of information? Enter Today Scripts. This simple app lets you add widgets using any Terminal command. If you’ve used a program like Geektool or Übersicht to add beautiful widgets to your desktop Add Beautiful Widgets To Your Mac Desktop With Übersicht Übersicht aims to replace the likes of Geektool, letting you add the output of any console command to your desktop – formatted with HTML5. Read More , you know how powerful this can be.

Whether you want to monitor your system, or just want to see certain information quickly, we’ve got you covered. Here are a few commands you can try out after installing Today Scripts.


One Month Calendar, With Current Date Highlighted


Sometimes you need to know what the date will be next Tuesday, or what day of the week November 22 falls on. Longtime Mac users know that the “cal” command shows the current month in the Terminal. You can simply use that, or you can use the following script for the current date to be highlighted in red:

cal | grep --before-context 6 --after-context 6 --color -e " $(date +%e)" -e "^$(date +%e)"

Either way, you’ll have a quick way to glance at the current month’s dates.

via Command Line Fu


See The Time In Various Time Zones


Yosemite comes with a world clock widget, but for some insane reason it offers clock faces instead of a straight-forward list of times. If you find this as stupid as I do, use the following command instead:

echo "Denver `export TZ='US/Mountain';date +'%-l:%M %p';unset TZ`"
echo "London `export TZ='Europe/London';date +'%-l:%M %p';unset TZ`"
echo "Paris `export TZ='Europe/Paris';date +'%-l:%M %p';unset TZ`"
echo "Mumbai `export TZ='Asia/Kolkata';date +'%-l:%M %p';unset TZ`"
echo "Sydney `export TZ='Australia/Sydney';date +'%-l:%M %p';unset TZ`"

Want to see different time zones than above? Editing the command is relatively simple. Check Wikipedia’s list of tz database time zones so you know what to put after “TZ=”.

Inspired by this Übersicht widget


See What’s On Your Clipboard


Want a quick way to see what’s on your clipboard? No problem. Just use this:


See BrainyQuote’s Quote Of The Day


Not everything needs to be perfectly practical. If you want something to think about in those down moments during your day, check this out:

curl --silent | egrep '(span class=\"bqQuoteLink\")|(div class=\"bq-aut\")' | sed -n '1p; 2p; ' | sed -e 's/<[^>]*>//g'

This pulls the Quote Of The Day from BrainyQuote into your Notification Center.

Via a comment at

See A System Overview With iStats


Want a quick overview of your CPU, fan and battery status? If you have iStats installed, it’s easy: just add “istats” as a command. Done!

Note that installing iStats requires a bit of command line skill.

See Your Battery’s Status, Quickly


This one’s simpl3 enough: you’ll see what percentage of power is left in your battery, and how much longer it will last. Or, if you’re charging, how long until it’s fully charged.

pmset -g batt | { read; read n status; echo "$status"; }

via the Today Scripts wiki

List The Top Apps By RAM usage


Wondering what’s using up all your RAM? This command gives you quick overview.

ps xmo rss=,pmem=,comm= | while read rss pmem comm; ((n++<5)); do

while ((i++ < short)); do size=" $size"; done;

if   (($pmem >= 20)); then color=$'\e[31m';
elif (($pmem >= 10)); then color=$'\e[33m';
else                       color=$'\e[32m ';

echo "$color$pmem% $size $(basename "$comm")"$'\e[0m'"";

via the Today Scripts Wiki

Top Apps by CPU Usage


Like the above, but for CPU usage.

ps xro %cpu=,comm= | while read cpu comm; ((i++<5)); do echo $cpu% $(basename "$comm"); done

via the Today Scripts Wiki

Display Your External IP


Want to know what your IP is? Here’s a quick way to find out.



(I was using a VPN when I took the screenshot. I’m not a complete idiot, nor do I reside anywhere close to Switzerland.)

What Else Could We Add?

There are a few ideas left, such as using iCalBuddy to get a more precisely-defined agenda. Can you think of anything else? Share any great commands you find below, and together we’ll make the Notification Center the most informative panel on your Mac.

So you’ve seen a few commands that I’ve found, but now I want to know:

What will you add to your Notification Center?

Related topics: Notification Center, OS X Yosemite, Terminal.

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  1. its_me
    June 16, 2016 at 9:40 am

    Title is misleading. It should be "How to Add Absolutely Anything *That Is Plain Text* To Yosemite’s Notification Center".

  2. Anonymous
    September 17, 2015 at 9:17 pm

    How would I add reddit mod mail notifications to this? I've been trying to set up reddit mod mail notifications to my notifications bar for quite some time, and this is the closest I've gotten. It would also be ten times better if I could also reply to mod mail right from the notification pop up, but i'm guessing that's gonna be a lot more complicated.

    • Justin Pot
      September 17, 2015 at 9:26 pm

      That's a tricky one, hmm. There's no app built to do this, so we'd be looking at piping something through Today Widgets, but I cannot find a Terminal-based interface for Reddit. Combine this with the fact that I'm not a mod on Reddit and I feel very ill-equipped to help you. Sorry. :(

      • Anonymous
        September 17, 2015 at 11:11 pm

        ok, thanks anyways. I set up a bunch of other helpful things with this so thanks for that. I'll try asking around on reddit, thanks!

        • Justin Pot
          September 18, 2015 at 3:50 pm

          Please let us know if you get this working!

        • Anonymous
          September 18, 2015 at 5:06 pm

          Will do!

        • Anonymous
          September 21, 2015 at 2:40 pm

          i got it working, but with a different app...

        • Justin Pot
          September 21, 2015 at 3:05 pm

          Awesome! Which one?

        • Anonymous
          September 21, 2015 at 10:30 pm

          I used an rss reader. I used Monotony but I'm sure there are a lot of other apps you can get to get the job done.

          Go to reddit, click your user, click preferences, click rss feeds tab, and scroll down to unread messages and click RSS. Copy and paste link into Monotony and ur good to go.

        • Justin Pot
          September 21, 2015 at 11:23 pm

          Oh nice one, I didn't even think about RSS integration! Glad you got it working.

        • Anonymous
          September 22, 2015 at 2:38 am

          thanks for your help!

  3. Anonymous
    August 30, 2015 at 10:56 am

    I have a script that shows me what screen sessions I have open on a list of remote hosts. It's a little long, but I find it indispensable:

    for h in $( cat ~/.screen_hosts.lst )
    screens=$( ssh $h 'screen -ls' | grep -o '[[:digit:]]\+\.[^[:space:]]\+' )
    if [[ -n $screens ]]
    echo $h
    for session in $screens; do echo -e "\t$session"; done

    FWIW, it actually takes a little while to execute, so eventually I decided to just run it in a loop in the background (with "sleep 60", of course) and have Today Scripts just cat the latest output.

  4. Anonymous
    June 24, 2015 at 11:39 pm

    Awesome post, but is there any way to increase the font size? I use a 4k monitor and I'd like the text to be a little bit bigger. Thanks!

    • Justin Pot
      June 25, 2015 at 1:28 pm

      I haven't seen a way to make the text bigger, sorry.

  5. Gabriel
    May 17, 2015 at 10:43 pm

    Hey Justin, thanks for all your hard work with Today Scripts.
    I've never written code like this before, but I was inspired to find a way to display the battery percentage for my Bluetooth mouse and keyboard in real-time.
    For whatever reason Apple has not integrated this feature neatly into their UI:

    Keyboard Battery Percentage:
    ioreg -n "AppleBluetoothHIDKeyboard" | grep -i -o "batterypercent.*" | sed '1d' | tr -d '[:punct:]'

    Mouse Battery Percentage:
    ioreg -n "BNBMouseDevice" | grep -i -o "batterypercent.*" | sed '1d' | tr -d '[:punct:]'

    There may be a cleaner way to write this, I sort of just brute forced my way to the end result.

  6. Mike
    May 7, 2015 at 2:17 pm

    Also the IP address script is freezing and won't allow me to remove it. Any suggestions? Thanks.

    • Justin Pot
      May 7, 2015 at 2:24 pm

      That's an annoying bug, I'm not sure how I'd proceed sorry.

  7. Mike
    May 7, 2015 at 1:20 pm

    Hi Justin, thanks for the information. This is coming in handy. I wanted to know if there is a way to make a notepad or something where I can quickly copy and paste a few lines of text or scripts I use quite often.

    • Justin Pot
      May 7, 2015 at 2:22 pm

      There's not really a notepad widget for the notification centre that I know of, sorry.

  8. Jamie
    March 28, 2015 at 5:44 pm

    Do you know of a way of having the today widgets in the sidebar always open? I'd like to have it always open on say a second display .

    Is there any tweak which will allow me to do this?


  9. Justin
    March 27, 2015 at 5:15 am

    Also, if I can introduce you to a perl + Mojolicious solution for pulling arbitrary text from webpages:

    perl -Mojo -E 'say g("")->dom->at("a[title~=quote]")->text'

    Much easier and probably more reliable than a bunch of greps/seds :-)

    You'll need Mojolicious installed:

    sudo cpan Mojolicious

    • Justin Pot
      March 27, 2015 at 3:09 pm

      That's really cool, I'll have to play around with this!

  10. Justin
    March 27, 2015 at 1:29 am

    Great ideas here.

    Note that the TZ example is overcomplicated. You can just do:

    echo "Denver `TZ='US/Mountain' date +'%-l:%M %p'`"

    • Justin Pot
      March 27, 2015 at 3:09 pm

      That's really cool! I have to say I've been pulling ideas from around the web, tried to link to sources, I'm not smart enough to think of such things all on my own. I hope your supplement is useful to someone!

    • Juan Manuel Palacios
      March 28, 2015 at 8:38 pm

      Exactly, no need to export the timezone environment variable to then unset it just after executing the command.

      Instead, just give it a local value without exporting it, and that's enough to make the date command read it.

  11. ifire
    January 24, 2015 at 12:24 pm

    not working for me : message, the app don´t can open

    • Justin Pot
      January 24, 2015 at 4:47 pm

      Are you getting the Developer error? If so, right-click program, then click "Open" and you should get an option to run the program.

  12. Ali Sadreddini
    January 6, 2015 at 8:47 pm

    thank you. I've looked everywhere to be able to add a OneMonth widget to my notification centre. Now I have found other useful tools as well. RAM usage, clipboard content, all great stuff to have in the notification centre. really good.

    • Justin Pot
      January 6, 2015 at 9:41 pm

      Glad you found it useful! Let us know if you find any other cool commands for this, okay?

  13. Kyle
    January 4, 2015 at 5:44 pm

    Hi Justin, how did you run iStats in today scripts? I can run the command ```istats``` anywhere and I get the right result with:

    --- CPU Stats ---
    CPU temp: 53.0°C ??????

    --- Fan Stats ---
    Total fans in system: 2

    But when I put it in the Today Scripts editor it returns:
    command not found

    On the wiki it says to use /bin/bash and I installed iStats with ```gem install iStats``` through RVM. DO you have any advice to get it working? Do you know of any other guides that use iStats and Today Scripts?

    • Kyle
      January 5, 2015 at 7:10 pm

      I figured out the issue, I had a bad installation of RVM. So I imploded and re-installed.

    • Justin Pot
      January 5, 2015 at 7:15 pm

      Glad you figured it out!

  14. Xavier Paredes
    December 28, 2014 at 4:19 pm

    I downloaded Today's scripts but when I double click the app nothing happens. Any idea why? I'm running Yosemite 10.10.1 (14B25)

    • Justin Pot
      December 29, 2014 at 4:12 am

      You won't see anything when you open the app itself, but once you do you should see the new widget in the Notification Center.

  15. Shane
    December 6, 2014 at 3:40 pm

    How did you get the green dot and "Ram Usage" to show up? Love this stuff, I actually used your script on geektool and it works great.

    • Justin Pot
      December 6, 2014 at 7:28 pm

      If you're running the latest version of Today Scripts the script the green dot and a custom title are part of the package.

  16. Anonymous
    December 6, 2014 at 2:57 pm

    Hi Justin,

    thanks for your fast reply !

    Although I couldn't get the code working when combining the red marked day
    (tried different combination) it's a great solution for me!

    Have a nice Weekend !

  17. Anonymous
    December 5, 2014 at 2:35 pm

    very nice tip – thanks for sharing !

    is there a quick tip how the moth before and the month after (means the actual month in the middle) can be shown ?

  18. Bach
    December 2, 2014 at 12:28 am

    That's pretty brilliant! I finally found what the notification centre is really good for!

    thanks for sharing!

    • Justin Pot
      December 2, 2014 at 2:08 pm

      I'm glad this was useful for you! What did you add that you found so useful?

  19. Evgeny Mason
    November 25, 2014 at 11:51 am

    external address can be found quickly:

    dig +short

    • Justin Pot
      November 29, 2014 at 2:36 pm

      That's another great way to do that, thanks!

  20. Ramsey
    November 19, 2014 at 3:32 pm

    Good report but I take issue with a couple of things..

    You say: "It’s pretty clear Apple intends for this to replace the long-obsolete Dashboard"

    I disagree. Notification widgets are pretty much limited to displaying status and information. They are not allowed to have any particular functionality in the Notification Center. Apple has stringently disallowed calculator and note-taking widgets for Notification Center in both iOS and OSX. On the other hand, Dashboard widgets allow you to calculate, take notes, address envelopes and many other things. Find some functionality in a web page and Safari allows you to save it to Dashboard. The author of Today Scripts posting in his original Reddit thread said that he would have to disable most of the functionality in order to submit Today Scripts to Apple for inclusion in the App Store. Apple did a disservice to Dashboard by making it a Space. But if you go to Mission Control preferences, you can restore it to Overlay the Finder as originally presented.

    Secondly, you have obviously compiled the app for your review. Why not provide a courtesy link to the app for those people who are not Xcode proficient?

    • Justin Pot
      November 20, 2014 at 12:01 am

      Hey Ramsey! Thanks for taking the time to comment.

      Point 1: I'm not saying I think Apple /should/ get rid of the Dashboard, but I really do suspect that they will. You can disagree if you like, but Apple hasn't done much of anything to improve Dashboard, or make it easier to find widgets, for years. And now they've implemented a new system with a very similar function. It's just speculation, though, I'll admit that.

      As for compiling the app: I absolutely didn't. I don't even have XCode on my machine right now. There's a link to the download on the page I linked to, but perhaps I should update that for the sake of simplicity. Here it is:

      I'll add a direct download link, thanks for thinking of that.

  21. Kodatnik
    November 19, 2014 at 3:03 pm

    Great tool :)