Putting a Screen Time prefpane in your macOS Dock

Apple’s new Screen Time feature is a handy way to track how much time you’ve worked on various projects (or how many hours you’ve been at work) throughout the week.  I use it so often, I turned it into a dock icon.

But there’s a bug in Screen Time (that still exists in Catalina 10.15.3), whereby if you launch it, sometimes the number of hours shown will not match reality.  And there is no refresh button to get the hours shown re-calculated.

To get a the number of hours of screen time updated within the last minute, you have to close the prefpane and relaunch it.  I was getting tired of opening Screen Time, closing it, and then opening it again, so I built a simple AppleScript to do that automatically:


To do the same:

  1. Open Script Editor.
  2. Type in the above code exactly as written in the screenshot.
  3. Pull down the File menu and Export it with a File Format of App and drag it to your dock.

You now have a “working” Screen Time prefpane which is always updated when you click the dock icon.

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