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Before reading further: I know about butler and similar programs. I am looking for a BUILT-IN way to do this without a third party app.

Anyway, I wrote an AppleScript that runs a shell command. I want to display that output in the menubar at the top... without Butler how can I do this?

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As a generality, without a third party program, such as Growl, there is no built in way to do this.

However, you could write a script or other program such as one I found here that provides the menulet service for you. I'm sure that Growl integration would be much easier to accomplish.

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There isn't a built in way to do this in OS X. However, using Growl, you can have notifications. Here's a sample script for that:

--Make sure Growl is running
tell application "System Events"
    set isRunning to (count of (every process whose bundle identifier is "com.Growl.GrowlHelperApp")) > 0
end tell

if isRunning then
    tell application id "com.Growl.GrowlHelperApp"
        set the allNotificationsList to ¬
            {"Test Notification", "Another Test Notification"}
        --Notifications can be enabled in System Preferences>Growl>Applications>Display Options
        set the enabledNotificationsList to ¬
            {"Test Notification"}
        register as application ¬
            "Growl AppleScript Sample" all notifications allNotificationsList ¬
            default notifications enabledNotificationsList ¬
                    -- Set the icon. You can use any icon from any application
            icon of application "AppleScript Editor"

        notify with name ¬
            "Test Notification" title ¬
            "Test Notification" description ¬
            "This is a test AppleScript notification." application name "Growl AppleScript Sample"

        notify with name ¬
            "Another Test Notification" title ¬
            "Another Test Notification :) " description ¬
            "Alas — you won't see me until you enable me..." application name "Growl AppleScript Sample"

    end tell
end if

That should display this:

And if you have the other notification enabled too:

More advanced techniques are described here.

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