Measurist App - Screen ruler for the Mac display

When it came to the Measurist app, a display ruler for iMac and MacBook screens, I was a bit skeptical at first. How should a millimeter-accurate display come about? And what do you need a ruler made of pixels for? You will hardly hold a workpiece, cardboard box or the like on the display and scratch it. After downloading and testing the Measurist app and doing a little research, I now think that it is a useful tool for measuring on the Mac. As well as ScreenApp the virtual ruler "Measurist" comes from the developer Takuto Nakamura and can be used free of charge.

The Measurist App brings you a virtual ruler on the Mac display. Millimeter accuracy is only guaranteed by the developer of the free software for MacBook and iMac.
The Measurist App brings you a virtual ruler on the Mac display. Millimeter accuracy is only guaranteed by the developer of the free software for MacBook and iMac.

Measurist - Mac app as a virtual ruler with millimeter display

The Measurist App offers three different modes and a slider for transparency. Images, graphics, windows, elements and the like that are behind the app window on the screen can be measured. Desk symbols, documents and folders can also be measured in this way, if necessary. If you really don't have another ruler at hand and have to measure a sheet of paper, a paper clip or something like that, you can also use the non-transparent Measurist app;)

In addition to the ruler at the bottom and left of the app, Measurist also offers the so-called "Protractor" - in English: protractor. The protractor can be useful for graphics editing, photo editing, design on the Mac and many other things. Do you want to straighten the horizon of a photo or show the 13% incline of a virtual street at an exact angle on the digitally created street sign? These and other possibilities are available with of the free software!

The third function of the ruler app for macOS is the drawing of a freehand ruler. In this way, diagonal measurements can also be taken or curves can be measured on a satellite image in scale. In my Measurist Test, I did not explore and exhaustively try all the possibilities. However, I wrote “Sir Apfelot” - that's something too: D

By the way: Measuring digital content with a precise ruler as an app for the Apple Mac can also make sense in many other areas of application. If it says in an online shop that products or their images are shown in their original size, then you can measure them that way. Even if you design a graphic or a print product yourself, you can measure with millimeter precision whether everything is correct. Sure there are separate solutions for this in setting programs for professionals - but for hobby, the wedding or graduation newspaper, etc. you can install the free Measurist app;)

Measurist test and thoughts on the accuracy of the ruler app

Admittedly, I haven't tested much. I downloaded the Measurist software for free from the Mac App Store, played around with the individual functions and created a folding rule / folding rule. In the following picture you can see that the display is accurate. The apparently visible deviations result from the camera perspective. But if you look directly at a 90 ° angle with the ruler on the display with the Measurist app, you can see that really clear millimeters are displayed.

So how does that come about? In the App Store, the developer behind the application gives the following statement for use: "I cannot guarantee 1mm for monitors other than Mac's display.“- so I assume that the app first identifies the iMac or MacBook it is running on. From this or from the graphic values ​​of the display (resolution, pixel density, dimensions) it is then calculated how many pixels are one millimeter and one centimeter. Especially if you mirror / synchronize the Mac display on external monitors, projectors or televisions, there will certainly be deviations. 

If you drag the app window onto an external monitor, the scale will be recalculated. You can tell that the app stops responding for a short time and then the ruler adapts. On my external Full HD monitor with a 22 inch diagonal, this also resulted in a correct display of the ruler. But that doesn't have to be the case with every device.


After initial doubts, there are possibilities to use the software sensibly. The functionality and the “how?” Behind the exact representation of the virtual ruler also result in terms of resolution, pixel density, etc. In the test, the Measurist app showed what it can do and that it is accurate. However, I have noticed a disadvantage in the standard view: the ruler display is limited to the top and left edges of the program. If you need it on the right or at the top, you have to switch to freehand mode. Otherwise everything is great!

[appbox app store id1423823777]

Have fun downloading and using it. Feel free to leave a comment with your opinion and your experiences!

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2 comments on “Measurist App – On-Screen Ruler for Mac Display”

  1. Hi
    Your report has made me curious, especially since I need the attributes you described. I installed and tried the app. Unfortunately, when using the freehand ruler, my MacBook Pro 15” 2017 freezes completely. Nothing works anymore and only a “hard” switch off helps. Maybe others have had this experience too. Would interest me.
    Best regards,

    1. Hi Jochen! I also happen to have the MacBook Pro 15 inch from 2017. The software works without any problems for me. I've tried all three measurement options several times, but nothing is frozen. Seems to be due to your MacBook or the installation ... Does the same thing happen again after a restart? LG! Jens

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