BeOS nostalgia, Mac OS X style.
Classic BeOS screen savers for the Mac.
Welcome! These screen saver modules for the Mac are
reinterpretations of my
screen_blanker add-ons for BeOS R5. They are intended not just for
BeOS refugees and fanboys, but for anyone who likes clean,
beautiful, simple screen effects on idle Macs. Read on for the
story behind the BeOS screen saver pack, or skip
right to the goodies.
An aside: Long-time users of these savers might be
up there in this page’s URL. No, I haven’t sold the
BeOS screensaver pack to some big software company. What I
have done is collect my Macintosh software projects, free
and shareware, under the toastycode name.
Pyrothèque (another new take on an old idea) and Cuckoo (a timely little utility).
The story? It’s pretty simple. I used to work at a little OS shop called Be, Incorporated. (Perhaps you’re old and/or curmudgeonly enough to have heard of it.) I wasn’t there at the beginning, the BeBox days, when the idea of more than one CPU per person was laughable. I wasn’t around for the PowerPC salad days, R4 and 4.5 and Power Computing clones. I showed up for the bitter end.
It took us a while to get to the bottom of the roller coaster, however. After months of late nights at the office, the summer found us watching helplessly as our client abruptly discontinued our project. Be was in a tailspin; our other customers disappeared quickly, and we all wondered what would become of our little gang.
There was time aplenty for other projects as well. For my part, I had a sleek Pismo on my desk that wasn’t getting much use anymore; in my (increasing) free time I decided to teach myself Objective-C on the Mac. These screen savers, replicas of my favorite BeOS idle-time distractions, were the result.
Each screen saver is packaged as a disk image (DMG) file. Download the DMG and double-click it to show the screen saver file. Double-click that file to install the screen saver on your PowerPC or Intel Mac. That's it.
These screen savers are copyright © 2007 toastycode, but they are free for your personal use. Any redistribution of these files (e.g. on DVD compilations) must be approved by the author.
—Dan Sandler <toastycode.com>
Blurb: Scatters random messages in different fonts and soothing colors. Specify the text yourself, or have Message pull it from an external program.
Download: Message 1.5.1 Universal
Screenshots: Preferences (3 images) … 2 3 Simple messages (4 images) … advertisement zh4 jp Fortune (12 images) … bitbucket brooks drking smollet barry violet note brown comicfont green pink Word of the day (3 images) … 2 3 Useful commands (3 images) … Useful commands top Unicode art (12 images). friendly-skies circles2 clover snowflakes circles4 smiles snowflakes2 rockstars fingers2 pink-diamonds
About: The original “word art” screensaver (and still champion). Message scatters text across your screen in a shameless demonstration of the text rendering facilities in Mac OS X. To choose fonts and colors entirely at random would be disastrous; instead, Message settles on a single typeface and subtly varies the color and size to produce an eye-catching collage of letters and shapes.
The original Message add-on for BeOS (by Jon Watte) could
only display the output of
(the BSD fortune-cookie program), but Message for Mac OS X
lets you choose any command-line tool to supply its text. You
can also type any text you like (something utilitarian, like
“Be back soon,” or silly, like Unicode dingbats).
Message is pre-loaded with a number of useful commands, including a “word of the day” mode (why wait for 10.5?). An installation package for FreeBSD fortune is available, if you prefer the wisdom of bearded Unix geeks.
Blurb: Beautiful circles, all over your screen, touching but not overlapping..
Download: Foam 1.3.1 Universal (released April 15, 2008)
About: Gently colored circles appear one-by-one, tangent to other circles, until every usable space is filled. (It’s always reminded me of Silicon Valley that way.) Originally designed by fellow Be hacker Chris Tate as a classic MacOS application called bubbles.
Blurb: Highly geometric line art.
Download: Lissart 1.2.0 Universal
About: Also originally by Chris Tate, the Lissart add-on was intended for BeOS R5, but it (like so many things we did) never saw the light of day. Actually, Lissart is older still: “originally written in BASIC, on a TI ‘calculator,’ drawing on a plotter—in 1981.” The current version of this spirograph-like screen saver for MacOS X is anti-aliased, offers color controls, and (new in 1.2.0) introduces some color variation across the line art, with sometimes dramatic results.
Download: BuyNow 1.2.0 Universal
About: It, uh, well, it’s sort of a Be folklore thing. READ NOW!