There is a big difference in both performance and power consumption between the two video cards in a MacBook Pro.
The problem is, I often forget which one I am running. This can end up with a dead battery while on an airplane pretty quickly. As far as I can tell, you have to open the Energy Saver System Preference to see which one is active.
Does anyone know of a tool that will display (in the menu bar, on the desktop, whatever) my current video card status? Especially good would be a terminal command that would report which one was active. I could use that as part of my GeekTool setup.
I'm also capable of writing my own tool if anyone happens to know where in the API I would look for this information.
Anyone have any ideas?
EDIT: The answers below concerning system_profiler are definitely a step in the right direction. The MBP shows information for BOTH video cards, regardless of which is active... BUT will show "display not connected" for the display attached to the inactive card. I should be able to script something that figures it out from there.
EDIT2: The key is getting the output from system_profier in the xml format (using the -xml switch). Scripts are below to parse the resulting plist and display the result.