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Author Topic: IDEA: Very simple timeclock utility  (Read 37522 times)
superboyac
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« on: August 03, 2006, 06:37:13 PM »

I've been searching for almost 2 hours, but I can't find anything.  Here is the idea, it seems simple, but I don't know if it really is.  Here is my visualization of it:

--The main window is just a list or grid of events I create, like "arrived at work", "went to lunch", "came back from lunch".

--Next to each event would be a time entry field with a button next to it.  If you click the button, it will automatically fill the time with the current time.  Or else, you can type the time in manually.

--Each day's log should be stored in some kind of database.  And there should be an option somewhere to export some date range of the database as a .csv, or tab-deliimited file, or something universal like that.

If anyone can do it, much thanks!
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superboyac
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« Reply #1 on: August 04, 2006, 12:29:49 AM »

I don't want to be too pushy, but if someone was able to make this thing, it would be greatly appreciated.  There is some unfair persecution going on at our work right now, and I want to secretly have some hard evidence on file in case some unfortunate circumstances arise.

Thanks again.
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mouser
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« Reply #2 on: August 04, 2006, 12:48:47 AM »

Quote
If you click the button, it will automatically fill the time with the current time.  Or else, you can type the time in manually.

ps. i know there are timeclock type apps around, but dont know if there are any free ones to do what you want; since your needs seem simple enough this seems like a reasonable task.

though it sounds like something you might want to do as a web app (php, ruby).
this sounds like a good assignment for me to post in the programming school actually.

maybe you can elaborate a little more about your needs - like how much do you want implemented to prevent people from putting in fake data, clocking in for each other, etc.
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superboyac
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« Reply #3 on: August 04, 2006, 01:43:14 AM »

Thanks mouser, if it's easy enough for the class, that would be great.  I'll be selfish and tell you my needs for the program.  Of course, if anyone want s to add additional features, you're more than welcome:

--don't worry about any security features, as far as fake data and stuff.  It's pretty much the honor system.  Besides, I want to be able to manually edit the times in case I forget to login one time or something.  That's why I want there to be a button that logs the time OR you can just manually type it in.

--All the events should have a start time and a stop time.  And you should be able to have multiple events started at the same time.  I found a freeware program out there that would automatically stop another event when you started another one.  So it could only do one at a time.  But just because I go on break doesn't mean I'm checking out of work for good.  All events are independant of each other.

--in the reports or the export feature, I'd like the rows to be organized by day, and the columns by the start/stop time of the events.  All the events for that day should appear on the same row, even if some didn't happen (at least have a placeholder).

Anyway, that's all I can think of.  It's cool if no one wants to do it, I kind of posted this in the heat of the moment.

PS. mouser, could you tell me the names of some of the programs you know of (even if it's not free) that can do this?
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brett
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« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2006, 04:50:35 AM »

Superboyac

Heres a AHK script that might fit in,
Titlelog v1.exe

Download exe and copy to a chosen directory.
When run
- creates a subfolder called 'Titlelog' . this is where the text logs are created
- will create a text file each day with the Title of each focused window appended to the file, (date,time,windowtitle)
- Trayicon has six(6) simple windows that are configurable in the preferences.
- Has a idle time in preferences that logs if PC not used for 'x' minutes

To use
when going to Lunch. Right click on trayicon and select 'Gone to Lunch'.
This will pop a simple window to the desktop.
Titlelog will append to file the date,time,windowtitle.

This should give a simple log of the PC activity for the day.
I will use this myself as my own timesheet when I am in the office, so thanks for the idea.

@mouser, please still do a programming school, I can see many potential uses for this. and I want to learn from others.

feedback and suggestions welcome
thanks
doublebogey

*Edit* new files uploaded after idle bug found
« Last Edit: February 08, 2007, 03:13:19 PM by brett » Logged
tomos
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« Reply #5 on: August 06, 2006, 05:52:50 AM »

I think this, combined with Instant Boss, might be what it takes to finally get me working. smiley
Its showing me exactly what I've been doing instead of working - I know, its Sunday, but I'm going on holidays tomorrow & supposed to get something finished, instead:

....
20060806,1241,C:\COMPUTER
20060806,1241,C:\BURN!
20060806,1241,C:\COMPUTER
20060806,1241,
20060806,1241,EditPad Lite
20060806,1242,IDEA: Very simple timeclock utility - Opera
20060806,1243,
20060806,1243,EditPad Lite
20060806,1243,IDEA: Very simple timeclock utility - Opera
20060806,1243,Standalone HTTP-Server running from CD/USB without installation - Opera
20060806,1243,IDEA: Very simple timeclock utility - Opera
20060806,1243,EditPad Lite
20060806,1244,IDEA: Very simple timeclock utility - Opera
...
with loads more non work related stuff..!

gotta get some credits, this one deserves a few from me!
(also I WILL get to work embarassed )
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Tom
superboyac
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« Reply #6 on: August 07, 2006, 12:41:57 PM »

Thanks doublebogey, that works pretty well.  It keeps track of everything happening.  I would rather have it just keep track of when I arrive or go to break instead of every little thing I'm doing on my computer.

Actually, I just found a program called Work Time Recorder, that seems to do what I'm asking, although it's not perfect.

To be honest, I don't even really want to keep track of my time anymore...maybe I was just a little hot about an issue last week.  I have too many other things to be doing besides worrying about my time also.  If anyone is going to dispute my work ethic, let him bring the evidence.
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brett
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« Reply #7 on: August 08, 2006, 06:39:01 AM »

Quote
Thanks doublebogey, that works pretty well.  It keeps track of everything happening.  I would rather have it just keep track of when I arrive or go to break instead of every little thing I'm doing on my computer.

This raises a very valid point and one I was a little uncomfortable to start with.
There are no end of intrusive keyloggers, and equally as many privacy sweepers around.

TitleLog is intended as a 'Personnel' Log of the days PC activity.
Personally, the more I have used this, the more I like it.
To give an example of how bad I am at keeping a Timesheet, I installed a GPS Vehicle Logger in my car, and its brilliant.
TitleLog will bring me similar information.

So to avoid the privacy stigma with TitleLog.
- A icon will always display in the toolbar
- The text files are just that, Text files in plain old CSV format.
- You can always edit out any lines of a log file in Notepad.
- The AHK source code is available,  but not very pretty.

NEW
Version 1b
- The elapsed time a window is active is now logged
- The 'Show todays Log' now opens a Listview, click on headers to sort - time, elapsed, Window name
- added. 'Open Log Folder' to select any day for the listview
- Tidy up of some lines and bugs

raw text log
20060808,2116,Loading TitleLog v1b Preferences,0:00:00
20060808,2116,musikCube,0:00:11
20060808,2116,Google - Mozilla Firefox,0:00:06
20060808,2117,Inbox - Thunderbird,0:00:13
20060808,2117,Google - Mozilla Firefox,0:00:07
20060808,2117,DonationCoder.com Forum - Index - Mozilla Firefox,0:00:16
20060808,2117,AutoHotkey Help,0:00:08
20060808,2117,TitleLog.exe Exited by User

Listview


Feedback welcome always

Doublebogey
« Last Edit: February 08, 2007, 03:14:00 PM by brett » Logged
urlwolf
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« Reply #8 on: August 08, 2006, 07:21:07 AM »

hmm,
Doublebogey, as you add functionality to this program, it starts resembling one of my favorites:

visual timeanalyzer:
http://www.neuber.com/timeanalyzer/index.html

I plan to do a minireview at some point.
It doesn't let you log when you stop working and go for a walk, but there is an option to 'add notes to day view' that could be used to keep that kind of log.

The 'day view' in '14 days' is my favorite to look at when I wonder where my time went recently. And the fact that it shows an average time online is terribly useful if you are hooked to DONATION CODER cheesy.

best
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brett
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« Reply #9 on: September 06, 2006, 09:30:45 AM »

Thought I better update TitleLog for all those GTD followers   cheesy

This will show you WYD (What You Done) on your PC

Log the title of each window

now with
-  Idle Log Time, after 'x' mintues prompt the screen with a message box asking for input.
-  Add a comment to log (from taskbar icon)
-  View Log Folder
-  Fixed problem with comma's in window titles

« Last Edit: February 08, 2007, 03:14:36 PM by brett » Logged
jgpaiva
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« Reply #10 on: September 06, 2006, 04:33:47 PM »

Damn, this is a neat idea!
And evolved into a cool program, congratulations doublebogey!
You're definitelly getting some credits for this  Thmbsup

Btw... I think it's logging way too much titles, would it be possible for you to add it a way so that we could specify a list of window titles not to log? (if they could include * and ? i'd be most appretiated Wink )
I will definitelly use this as a way to keep track of what i've been doing.
Thanks!

(i have a small doubt: the log is made per-day or per-start of the program? I mean, if i start the program on one day, and keep it open till the next one, will 2 logs be created? Edit:I could just have read the code)

Yet another request: so that the list won't become as big, would it be possible that when the AHK_ID was kept, the program wouldn't make a new entry? I say this because programs as opera or vim change their title frequently and tend to generate an ocean of entries. (maybe this should be kept as an option, as some might like it as it is)

[edit] you forgot the .ahk code for the latest release[/edit]
« Last Edit: September 06, 2006, 05:24:25 PM by jgpaiva » Logged

jgpaiva
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« Reply #11 on: September 07, 2006, 06:25:25 AM »

Just another small comment:

You should add the following line:
[copy or print]
OnExit,Exit
To the begin of the script, so that if the user forgets to close the script before he shuts down the computer, the script will know what to do when windows tells it to end it's processing.
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tomos
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« Reply #12 on: September 07, 2006, 09:56:22 AM »

Damn, this is a neat idea!
And evolved into a cool program, congratulations doublebogey!
You're definitelly getting some credits for this  Thmbsup

Btw... I think it's logging way too much titles, ...

...Yet another request: so that the list won't become as big, would it be possible that when the AHK_ID was kept, the program wouldn't make a new entry? I say this because programs as opera or vim change their title frequently and tend to generate an ocean of entries. (maybe this should be kept as an option, as some might like it as it is)

for my purposes it would be handier say, if it just said: Opera, instead of listing each site as I change the tabs/windows. (It does make a very long file!)
  if possible!  smiley

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Tom
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« Reply #13 on: September 07, 2006, 11:15:37 PM »

I am on the road at the moment, I made a few changes last night on my laptop.

I am hesitant about throwing out data, as you can never put it back in.
What I propose, is to have a filter in the view GUI, that allows
- filter out all records that are less then 'x' seconds
- include only records with the followng text.

That should shorten the display, especially when surfing or as in my case, a media player whose title changes contantly.

will post when I return

dB
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jgpaiva
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« Reply #14 on: September 08, 2006, 02:53:07 AM »

I am hesitant about throwing out data, as you can never put it back in.
That is a very good point, i had the same idea. That's why i'm learning Ruby, because it has regex support (and i have some knowledge of regex) and will help me filter the list just as i'd like it.

will post when I return
Cool!  Thmbsup
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brett
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« Reply #15 on: September 09, 2006, 10:03:59 AM »

Hi all

v0185 Titlelog
-added fiter to logview




@Tomos, can filter just opera, but will still display full title,

@jgpaiva, would be very interested if you develop a better report/view/etc with Ruby.

lost old version of v1f so I will re comment the script in the next version.

Feedback wanted and welcome

db
doublebogey



« Last Edit: February 08, 2007, 03:20:39 PM by brett » Logged
jgpaiva
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« Reply #16 on: September 09, 2006, 11:09:05 AM »

Hi all

v0185 Titlelog
-added fiter to logview
That's looking good!

@jgpaiva, would be very interested if you develop a better report/view/etc with Ruby.
I played with it a bit, but hated ruby. Phyton is quite interesting, though, and i'll see if i can make something interesting out of it.

lost old version of v1f so I will re comment the script in the next version.
Notice that the .exe version you posted can be unpacked into a .ahk file again by using Exe2Ahk.
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brett
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« Reply #17 on: September 10, 2006, 07:19:21 AM »

But wait, there is more...v0194

added
- Save option in filter log view.
filter the log to what you desire, then save.
The main log file remains untouched, and a new file is created with only the filtered details.



Quote
Notice that the .exe version you posted can be unpacked into a .ahk file again by using Exe2Ahk.

A fair bit of panic set in with v1f. I had the AHK file on a thumb drive that got accidentally wiped.
exe2ahk would not work on the exe I had. until....
an old forum thread said you could drag n drop a exe onto exe2ahk . ..it worked,  though would not work through command line.   huh

next step is to allow printing from Logview, another new step. so could be a while.

dB
doublebogey
« Last Edit: February 10, 2007, 06:57:21 AM by brett » Logged
tomos
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« Reply #18 on: September 11, 2006, 02:26:50 PM »

I love the way it asks what I was doing while I was away from the computer

drinking tea, making lunch ....  smiley

Quote
@Tomos, can filter just opera, but will still display full title,

not fully sure what you mean - if I filter Opera, its just gone from display, innit? (leaving blank space)
(no need to respond if i understood correctly)
« Last Edit: September 11, 2006, 02:31:45 PM by tomos » Logged

Tom
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« Reply #19 on: September 19, 2006, 09:48:16 AM »

Quote
I love the way it asks what I was doing while I was away from the computer
actually I think theres a bug with that:

When desktop is idle for designated time I get a query asking what I've been doing.
When saved though, the text doesnt show up on the list.

If I choose "Add comment to log" - that works.
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Tom
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« Reply #20 on: February 08, 2007, 02:36:14 PM »

Brett, this was exactly something that I was looking for.

When I downloaded TitleLog v0194.ahk, I am getting a scripting error:

Error at line 52.

Line Text: If, WindowTitlePre<>%WindowTitlePost%
Error: This line does not contain a recognized action.

The program will exit.

The .exe version you posted works fine.
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brett
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« Reply #21 on: February 08, 2007, 03:12:35 PM »

will update this weekend.
thanks
 Brett
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« Reply #22 on: February 09, 2007, 07:13:01 AM »

You know, i paid quite a bit of money for a tool that is basically titlelog with admin, reporting etc. A good tool though, if you install it for yourself.

As i tend to work on several things in parallel and with lots of interruptions it really helped me figure out how much time I had spent on each client/project/interruptions not by constantly having to think of logging, but by reviewing a list at the end of the day.

You'll be surprised to see where you waste your time and where others waste your time, and that what you would remember as a 5 minute job actually took you an hour when you count the phone call, quick research, getting files etc. etc. etc.

Everyone should try something like this
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« Reply #23 on: February 09, 2007, 11:51:00 AM »

Brett, I fixed the error I wrote about previously.
Quote
Error at line 52...
It was just a missing comma.

Also, there was a problem with the save filtered list function. It wasn't saving the files due to an incorrect MsgBox option.

Line 254 was:
[copy or print]
IfMsgBox, YES
. It should be
[copy or print]
IfMsgBox, OK
.

It is a really great tool! I appreciate your work on it.
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brett
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« Reply #24 on: February 10, 2007, 07:03:41 AM »

Thanks Frogmoses

Here is the new exe and AHK source with fixes

iphigenie and Frogmoses, thanks for the feedback and support

be sure to check out 'Workcoach'
http://www.donationcoder....um/index.php?topic=6694.0
there are features there that would be great if both where incorporated into one.


Brett




* TitleLog v1.0.exe (215.12 KB - downloaded 549 times.)
* TitleLog v1.ahk (10.76 KB - downloaded 427 times.)
« Last Edit: February 10, 2007, 07:06:47 AM by brett » Logged
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