Kill The Dock (for MacOS)

One of the best changes to my workflow has been disabling the OSX Dock. Navigating and operating my has gotten tremendously fast since adopting a Command Line GUI in its place. So if you dig efficiency I suggest you read on!

Your dock could look like this 😍 (it’s mine)


Command Line GUIs like Alfred or Launchbar are becoming increasingly popular among the super, super users. Use them to easily find apps, files, folders and more. It’s like the OS Spotlight but with everything you wished it could do, and more.

And yes, I’m suggesting you type your app name or folder vs. clicking it.

Welcome to the future.

Now, I know what you’re thinking.

Wait, that’s it?

Word, I feel you. Hold up though. I’m legit passionate about this.

Key Benefits

  • Navigating your mac becomes wayyyyy faster. How fast can you type a familiar 5 letter word? Probably around 170 milliseconds. At least that’s what is takes me to switch to or open Chrome. Can you move your hand to your trackpad or mouse, pin point and click your desired app in milliseconds?
  • You’ll stop checking your dock for pesky notification dots >:( When was the last time you checked your dock for that little red dot? New email? New slack message? New AIM? Keep your focus. Be intentional about what you give your attention to.
  • Your computer becomes less usable to random people. Whether or not this is a benefit really depends on your personality and/or work environment..
  • This forces you to use a Command Line GUIs and by proxy you’ll likely use its other amazing features. These include: creating reminders or calendar events on the fly, check word definitions, do some math, search the web, find contacts. Dope, right?

Let’s begin.

“Killing” Your Dock

Plot twist: The dock is immortal. But that won’t stop us.

1. Hide Your Dock

This hides the dock view until you hover over it.

2. Increase the Hover Time

Technically you can’t disable your dock, but you can increase its hover time to an unusable degree. Really, you want to increase it to a level that will break your habit. 5 seconds worked fine for me. And it’s still accessible if and when you truly need it. Type this in your terminal (Applications/Utilities/Terminal):

defaults write autohide-delay -float 5 && killall Dock

3. Adopt a “Command Line GUI”

This is the future for any super user: Think of what you want to open or go to and type it out. Command Line GUIs like Alfred or Launchbar “remember” what you frequent most. For example, for me:

  • c” will take me to Chrome.
  • “t” will open up Terminal.
  • “s” will pop open Slack.
This is Alfred. I use Alfred. Though Launchbar looks pretty dope, too. Try both before settling.

And yes, some app names overlap (e.g. Quick Time and Quik; Preview and Premier Pro), however it is so infrequent and is easily overcome by adding 1 extra character. Your brain will instinctively remember which these are and compensate accordingly. At least mine does ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

And Voila!

Type to navigate. I challenge you to give it an honest go and let me know how this changed your flow 🙏

Side Benefits

Remember the “and more” I mentioned wayyy up there? Well not only can you find apps, files and folders, but many (if not all) Command Line GUIs come with a loft of dope features. These examples are from Alfred.

Create reminders with prefix “r”

If you’ve ever added a reminder to the Reminders app.. you know how much friction is involved. It’s insane. Just type it out.

Create calendar events with prefix “cal”

Side note: This is a separate extension that integrates with Fantastical, which is the best calendar app I’ve tried. They have a 21 day trial. Give it an honest go and I promise you won’t look back.

Search random shit on Google, Amazon or Wikipedia

Tbh, I haven’t really adopted this feature yet. But it’s kinda cool.

Final Words

Replacing the dock with Alfred This made operating my computer much faster. And when you work at a startup, love the hustle and want to be the best that you can be … the little things help get you to above and beyond. Consider it.

Oh, and in the rare chance: No, I’m not associated with Alfred. I’m just a fanboy 😋

Let me know if you’ve also abandoned the Dock!

Hope this was helpful! I’m legit passionate about efficiency, focus and motivation. Let’s get there together ❤

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