World Time In Words for Mac

World Time In Words for Mac version 3.0 is now available through the Mac App Store. This update changes the name from “Time In Words” to “World Time In Words” as an acknowledgment that the major feature of this app is converting time between different time zones. This update adds the ability to show digital time if you need greater accuracy – just hold down Option as you open the menu. I have also added the ability to show 24-hour time in the menu bar.

World Time In Words runs as a menu bar utility app that displays your current time and date in words. Optionally, it can be set to display a number of time zones, again in plain English so it is always clear which day is being referred to. It shows the time in words in your menu bar all the time if you like, and now offers a convenient way to work out what the time will be in other zones at a specified local time.

The first time you run the World Time In Words app, it will appear in your menu bar and pop down a menu that looks like this:

World Time In Words starting menu

Selecting Preferences… will take you to a window like thisWorld Time In Words Preferences

Type in part of a city name in the search area to find that city and its time zone. Drag or double-click a line in the table on the right to move a time zone to the list on the left, which shows the time zones that will appear in the menu. Drag a line out of the list on the left to remove a zone, or double-click the unwanted line. Drag and drop to re-arrange the zones in the selected list.

Mars geeks: scroll to the bottom of the time zone list or search for Mars, Curiosity or Opportunity to find the Mars Rovers. Adding them to your selected time zones will show how many Sols (Martian days) the rovers have been on Mars.

Once you have selected some time zones, your menu may look like this:World Time In Words menu with added time zones

Note that the menu will indicate which time zones are currently in daylight savings time.

Version 3.0 adds the ability to see all the time digitally if you have a temporary need for greater accuracy. Hold down the Option key as you click in the menu title and the menu will appear like this:
World Time In Words digital option

To specify what will be displayed in the menu bar, you can toggle “Show time in words as menu title”. If this is checked, you have two other methods for adjusting what you will see. Select your preferred accuracy: “To closest 5 minutes” or “Precise”. Use the popup menu to select a time & date format to show in the menu bar. You can also choose 24 hour time for the menu title if you prefer.
Menu bar time & date formats

To see what time it will be in your selected time zones at various hours during your day, choose “What time will it be when…” from the menu. Move the slider to different hours in your local zone and read what the corresponding time will be in your preferred time zones.
What time will it be when...

If you want to make World Time In Words start automatically whenever you log in to your Mac, check the “Auto start…” checkbox. This uses Apple’s new methods of adding sandboxed items to the login startup list which has two consequences:

  • World Time In Words will not show up in your Login Items if you go to System Preferences
  • The auto-start will only work if the app is installed in your Applications folder.

While I do not think the second item is a problem, since the App Store automatically installs into your Applications folder, I disagree with the policy enforced in the first item. It means that if you wish to un-install World Time In Words, you should ensure that you have turned off “Auto start…” first, as there is no easy way to do this from outside the app.

However, World Time In Words is sandboxed, so it’s data and settings are kept in their own container and isolated from other apps for better security.

If you are having any problems with World Time In Words, or you have any suggestions for future improvements, please email me.