Tumult Nightly Beta now available!

Hey folks! I found that I wasn't liking the the macOS automatic Dark Mode and that scheduled Do Not Disturb didn't have a better indicator when it turned on at night (I wound up missing messages even though I was awake and expecting them!). So I had the idea to make a little utility app "Nightly" to tie them together. Demo video:

A beta is available to anyone who would like to try it out. You can sign up for the beta program here:

You'll get a complimentary license while the program is open.

Let me know what you think!

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F6 huh? OK, the F12 key is mine :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:

How do you use Do Not Disturb?

I set it to work at specific hours... usually an hour before I wake up and an hour before I go to bed. Sometimes I'm still up and working, but I don't usually miss messages because the Dock is visible. Recently, I turned off audio alerts for text messages because it was multiple devices making noise at the same time.

Do you change between Light and Dark mode system themes on your Mac?

I set it to automatic. I love it how Widgets plugs into that feature, one of the highlights of my day. I've seen it many times, but it still makes me happy.

I'm not sure what's the problem here. But, if you're going to make an app that manages this stuff, maybe add support for night shift too. Not sure what that would do though. I really like how Apple manages these features automatically.

I also use the dynamic wallpaper on my M1 MacBook Air. Usually, I'd just use the galaxy background, but those changing colors (based on the time of day) is really nice.

I automate lots of stuff in macOS land, like using Export Scripts to make Apps from Hype projects HA HA, but is Nightly solving a common problem?

There is one problem that is quite annoying. Sometimes I'll leave a browser window open. I don't like getting woken up in the middle of the night because of somebody's all-day calendar alert. If Nightly can somehow switch sound and notifications, that might be a powerful feature. Heh, not sure how you get that level of access past Apple's walled garden though.

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That's the actual key on the new M1 MacBook Airs, but coincidentally I've been using F12 on my mechanical keyboard for testing :slight_smile:.

Mainly I just wanted dark mode tied to DND for personal reasons, and it turns out the best way to automate this right now is as an app.... so you know... might as well make it available for others! It was a weekend hack for fun.

Absolutely a good idea! I want this myself when working with color graphics. I glanced at doing this earlier and it was a whole other pile of possible worms and I was uncertain would work on Big Sur. This is on the list of possible future features for sure.

My all day events get triggered at 9:00am, and therefore I keep DND on a schedule until 9:01am.

Are these from other people's calendars?

This app will never be on the App Store, and Apple does provide a calendar API. So theoretically I might be able to toggle DND in some cases or something like that.

Well, if you were using the popular Widgets app... heh, it did hit #3 in the Reference category... you'd have a window constantly appearing and disappearing. I suppose I should add customization to that, but F12 is nostalgic. That's the old Dashboard key.

One common request I get is hot corners. Maybe that's something you should look into too. (I'm not sure if that's possible for a Mac App Store app though. It's certainly a problem I've struggled with.)

Day job, uses Outlook. I don't want to install the Microsoft apps, so I use the browsers. Sometimes I forget to close the window. So... around 12:00 AM... BRRRINNNGGG!

Side note - I did install Microsoft Remote Desktop. Did you see that new icon? :man_facepalming:t2:

Just so you know, I also avoid Google as much as possible, so I didn't fill out the form. :laughing:

The sleepy-time noises are with other apps too though. I use Thunderbird to check email. I use just a simple water dropping sound for new messages. Sometimes, around 3AM... BLOOP... not sure why it does that. Although, the computer isn't set to sleep. It's like Chuck Norris... he doesn't sleep... he waits. (I don't put my Mac to sleep because then I wake up to a bunch of notifications on how my external drive wasn't ejected properly.)

So, I suppose a really powerful feature would be to sync with all of your Apple devices and just shut them up when you're sleeping. Perhaps it could even plug into the Apple Watch... if it detects a low heart rate, it assumes you're sleeping.

...or maybe it thinks you're dying and tries to wake you up. :laughing:

SCREEN BRIGHTNESS TO 100%

Your problem is that you're missing alerts. So, you could have features that use notifications... or perhaps detect email message priority. High Priority, when the computer is still in use, maybe that's an OK beep.

It's a meeting reminder. When they create an event the alert happens by default. If someone schedules a meeting with you... 15 minutes before... BLEEP... but not just on one computer, no no no no... EVERY COMPUTER... AND REMOTE COMPUTERS TOO... BLEEP! BLEEP BLEEP!

Personally, I don't trust apps if they're not from the Mac App Store. In general, I'd rather an app do less (or simply not use that app) than give it higher system access. I once returned a Mac App Store app because it asked for special permissions.


Oh, when I saw the title, I thought this was nightly betas for Hype. :crazy_face:

Are you sure you want to divert your energy? Hype is a winning app, no? There's still much work to do there.

Was it a girl? It's a girl... wasn't it? She thought you were ignoring her so you're making this whole app just not to apologize. :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:

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I currently have it switch automatically but tying it to do not disturb is smart and I would switch to that logic in a heart beat… also when I go into professional mode (dark) I can expect to not be disturbed and I like programming in the afternoon and beyond when distractions die down anyway, so perfect. I like that "mode" driven visual feedback, great idea!

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Ah, I forgot about that setting.

Surprisingly, I don't use it on a timer. I don't know why — especially since I have it on a timer with iOS devices. I think the logic is this... if the screen is not locked, then I'm working.

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From what I can tell Apple's hot corners isn't extensible beyond the preferences it provides. Off hte top of my head: You'd need to watch for every mouse move event (power intensive) and probably require an event tap to get these events when you are not in the foreground, which I believe would trigger an accessibility permission prompt the first time.

This would be amazing. The watch is pretty well synced to the phone, but I don't get why a lot of it doesn't optionally carry to the Mac.

For example, when I do zoom-based Kendo, I start a workout which puts my watch and phone in DND mode. But not my mac, which will often get slack pings during the class if I forgot t quit the app :angry:.

Unfortunately I don't think Nightly would be able to do it -- while there are some facilities that can be modified due to the open nature of the mac, doing these would never get approval for distribution on the iPhone since apple controls the only way to release apps.

Direct download link

Nightly needs Apple Event and Accessibility permissions to fully function, though you could avoid accessibility if you didn't want to use the screen brightness feature.

Having gone through all of this, all I can say is that the way apple manages permissions is completely bogus and probably destroying whole classes of apps due to the developer and user difficulty.

This is just a side project for some fun. My only goal is to get some free coffees by spending the extra time for testing/releasing it!

:wink:

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Nice icon!

I KNEW IT! :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:

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It's funny. After nearly a decade of using Tumult software, something like this still bothers me...

So, I was like, NOPE! :no_good_man:t2:

...and then the preferences were like...

...and the yellow alerts show where there are problems. Although, I think there might be one missing for "Show in Menu Bar" because I don't see a Nightly icon in the menu bar. I didn't even see it in the dock.

The app mentions the price... $5.25 ...maybe I should be charging more for Widgets. HA HA! I'm putting in all this work, but something like Nightly could do just as well. I like how Nightly offers discounts on other Hype apps. Since I didn't see Whisk on sale, I didn't get it. (There was a teeny window where I could have bought HyperEdit to get a discount on Whisk, but I skipped it. That seemed like hackery. HA HA!) But with Nightly, Whisk becomes much cheaper so it's like getting Nightly for free and getting a slight discount on Whisk.

Wow, I think I should take a better look at FastSpring again, because that's a nice feature. Too bad this can't be on the Mac App Store. That would be a pretty neat Tumult App Bundle.

There's no way to contact them and then get special permission for this app?

Also, are you going with the F6 key? I was looking for a key toggle setting, but I didn't see it. I can send you the code from Widgets if you need it. Although, you mentioned you had it working already. I remember what a struggle it was to get the app to respond to F12 when the app was hidden... whew!

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I knew it…

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I get that, and part of the beta is wondering if enough users will even grant it. Unfortunately the current macOS security architecture/UX doesn't really allow the granularity for safety or to make users even feel safe. It is so byzantine now.

I had considered the possibility of making this open source so one could better see that Nightly isn't doing anything nefarious and limiting attack surface area, but there's a lot of Tumult and payment specific code that I would not want shared (and if you can't see all the code then it is kinda pointless to do open source here).

It will not show up in the Dock, but definitely should be in the menu bar and looks like this:

Screen Shot 2021-03-12 at 5.02.35 PM

It doesn't need any permissions to show that... I assume you don't have anything that would hide dock items and there's still plenty of space for them?

While Nightly does use sandboxing (because I want the app to be as safe as possible), it has an exception entitlement to read shared preferences to get the state of Do Not Disturb. It is a little silly this isn't exposed through system events like Dark Mode (but even getting/setting that requires the Apple Event user permissions). In that regard, I'm still not sure Apple would even approve of the permissions we seek, as they tend to not like utility apps. Personally I want to deal with Apple as little as possible, but I may try submitting at some point for fun and see what happens.

No, it is tied to Do Not Disturb status. The app itself does not use a keyboard shortcut. It so happens that the key labeled F6 on M1 MacBook Airs will send a key event toggling DND. It is not the F6 key event, but a special function key event. Luckily Apple does allow a shortcut in the keyboard pref pane to be set for DND, which is what I used for testing with F12.

mP03d4

Hi, long time :smiley: I've got curios about this app and wanted to try it, so I followed all the instruction and got the nightly perfectly working: time to test it!

Just found a little error in the registration process:

I suppose you should switch "Whisk" with "Nightly". :wink:

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Thanks for the vigilance and reporting this - it has been fixed for the next beta!

(this is what I get with too much copy and paste)

Good to see you again :smiley:.

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Ah, it's there... just wasn't easy to see. It looks like my menu bar is using a setting that doesn't work very well with Nightly. It was OK on another Mac.

I forget, but I might have used a terminal command or setting to mess with the transparency of the menu bar. I'm not sure because apparently I use a stupid amount of terminal commands and I didn't find a related system setting. I do have "reduce transparency" unchecked. When checked, I do see the icon more clearly. So, the problem is probably something with transparency. Not sure what that could be, as the other menu bar icons seem to be in the right mode.

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Ah cool -- I can see this is a bug on Nightly's part (I use "reduce transparency" in accessibility and missed that the menubar could want white text even in light mode). Will fix!

Do you know when this is going to launch? I was just writing about the "Timely" template and realized it's related to "Nightly".

sleepy-time-emoji

The article mentions Apple's Color Shift, Dark Mode, and Dynamic Desktop features. I could mention Nightly too.

Timely... Nightly... I didn't mean to use the same suffix. HA HA.

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The app itself is ready to release, I just need to make a web page for it. Maybe I'll carve out some time this week :slight_smile:.

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