My three favorite macOS screensavers

Screensavers, you say? They’re more art than function these days. But, why not inject something either beautiful or useful into this mundane task of screen locking. Yes, it would be best if you still were locking your screen unless you want your four-year-old Slack messaging your co-workers. I have used a hot corner to the lower left to start my screen saver, locking the screen after a few seconds (if I accidentally trigger it). My screensaver will kick in after a healthy 10 minutes (I do work on multiple machines throughout the day). But, it’s a security practice you should never get out of the habit of doing. Lock your screen when you walk away.

Drift

A prepackaged screensaver with macOS since Catalina Beta 3, Drift has a flowy kind of feel. It’s a screensaver that makes you feel like you could be sitting in a digital ocean of 1s and 0s washing over you. It’s currently the default on my daily driver because it’s so relaxing.

Padbury Clock

Padbury Clock

This one is so useful to me I built a tribute site to it. Padbury Clock by Robert Padbury is one of the most useful things to have as a screensaver. When you walk back to your desk, you immediately know what time it is. It’s also handy in case someone is walking by and needs a reminder too.

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Aerial

Aerial

Aerial is a Mac screensaver based on the new Apple TV screensaver that displays the Aerial movies Apple shot over New York, San Francisco, Hawaii, China, etc. Starting with version 2.0.0, it also includes videos shared by Joshua Michaels & Hal Bergman!

Aerial is completely open source, so feel free to contribute to its development.

This screensaver is cool af. For years, the Apple TV came with these beautiful flyover screensavers that were just wonderful. Finally, someone came along and grabbed them out of the Apple TV Developers Kit and made them available on GitHub for everyone to enjoy.

Aerial is a wonderfully maintained and curated collection of Apple created, extravagant flyovers of places and dives through things. There is even a Linux port of Aerial. It’s a real delight to have it on the Apple TV I use to monitor OpenShift.tv. It’s a friendly reminder that there’s a much bigger world out there.

But, a gentle reminder that if you don’t have a graphics card, you’re going to be eating a lot of CPU with your screensaver.