This site is an always-in-progress repository for my thoughts and ideas. You'll generally find me writing about sustainability 🍃, urbanism 🏙️, programming 💾, vegan cooking 🍛, and whatever else pops into my mind.
Workspace icons on swaywm
Published on Jan 14th, 2024.

Since switching over to Fedora as my day-to-day operating system I’ve been using and loving swaywm as my desktop manager. As a longtime vim user, controlling my desktop environment with a plethora of keyboard shortcuts just feels right.

One thing I love about using sway, especially coming from macOS, is how customizable everything is. I’ve been able to tweak everything to exactly the way I enjoy using it- a blessing and a curse given how much of a time sink the tweaks can become.

I wanted to share a recent tweak I’ve added which allows me to label my sway workspaces with emoji, helping me discern what each is being used for. If you’re not a regular user of a tiling window manager, this is how the top status bar normally looks when you have a bunch of workspaces open:

As you can imagine it can be a bit difficult to remember what each workspace has on it. My little tweak allows you to make that same status bar look like this:

Nifty, right? The trick is a small script, attached to a keyboard shortcut, that launches rofi-emoji. I can search for an emoji and, upon hitting enter, it updates the icon of the currently selected workspace accordingly.

For anybody who wants to give it a shot, you can find the script in question here. If you end up trying it and have any suggestions for improvements feel free to send me an email. I’d love to hear if others’ are having fun with this!