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Author Topic: IDEA: timer that counts resting, interruptions, and work as separate entries  (Read 5035 times)
urlwolf
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« on: July 03, 2007, 07:51:08 AM »

This could be an easy project and very useful for many.

Here is the idea.
This is yet another tool to know how much you work/procrastinate, but with a twist. It must be lways on top.
It will have Three digital clocks:
      Yellow clock is the MAIN countdown timer. Has a set interval (say 60 min) and warns you once it's over. That's your time for rest. Has a small number that counts how many intervals you have consumed
      Can be paused/resumed with a shortcut
   
      Red Clock, it's a 'unscheduled pause' timer, goes up while the main countdown is paused. Records how often you hit pause, and it shows the # of pauses next to it. This is indicative of how often you are interrupted.
   
      Green Clock counts resting time. The difference with the red clock is that this is a scheduled pause, not an interruption. If you hit the start button (well, the shortcut) too early -i.e., not taking the scheduled rest- it'll warn you, but let you do it. The log will show you how many rests you skipped.
      
   
   At the end of the day, it writes a small report to disk, with date/rest etc. this would be easy to track in excel. It'll also show a timeline (gant chart) of your day in the three colors.

I'd love to have such a tool, as it follows the advice of many time management gurus!

Anyone up for it?

Thanks
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urlwolf
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« Reply #1 on: July 04, 2007, 08:22:13 AM »

Ok, so it looks like nobody is interested in coding this application.
But would you be interested in _using_ such a system?

I'm asking that because I think it's useful enough for me to either code it myself or delegate it...
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mouser
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« Reply #2 on: July 04, 2007, 10:16:27 AM »

I think app103, maker of InstantBoss should have a look at this idea, i think it has merit.  i like the idea.
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tomos
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« Reply #3 on: July 04, 2007, 01:54:56 PM »

But would you be interested in _using_ such a system?

I'm asking that because I think it's useful enough for me to either code it myself or delegate it...
Yes,
I'd be very interested in using something like that.

I use instant boss & was combining it with TaskLog which I liked but it doesnt recognise when the computer goes into hibernation which i use a lot. (nor does Timekeeper for that matter)


Quote
Red Clock, it's a 'unscheduled pause' timer, goes up while the main countdown is paused. Records how often you hit pause, and it shows the # of pauses next to it. This is indicative of how often you are interrupted.

I find anything which requires user input (which isn't forced on you..) tends to get left by the wayside - by me at any rate.
i.e. if I have to hit pause button (or shortcut for pause) when I take a break I'm guaranteed to forget it more often than not... so something that can recognise my absence would be good!

Otherwise sounds good to me - one thing I was considering requesting App to add - or take away I mean -  from Instant Boss was keyboard control - I keep pressing return at the wrong time & it thinks I'm working when I'm not &/or vice-versa.
Use of a designated shortcut would get around that though I guess
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Tom
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« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2007, 05:05:51 PM »

 One question about the Green clock is it an setable interval? I mean do you wnat it to be setable like for 5 minutes and when the main timer ends and it`s time to rest it counts down from 10 mins to 0 and when it is finish starts the main timer again ?
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app103
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« Reply #5 on: August 06, 2007, 08:28:46 PM »

I am going to be working on Instant Boss as soon as the weather cools down (the fall). It's hot & nasty here right now and there is no air conditioning in the room in which I have my PC. Not a good environment for thinking.

I have some plans for better logging that I am going to try to do. Everything will be logged. A lot of what you are asking for will be on tabs, within the application's log window.

Hopefully I'll be able to manage writing the logs to xml. That can open up a lot of possibilities for what you can do with that data, and other applications that can use it. You could even display it on your website or in a desktop widget (if someone makes one, but let's not get too far ahead just yet).

This is something I have really wanted to do. I feel it is desperately needed. The logging it currently does and how it is displayed isn't enough. Up until now I wasn't sure how I wanted to go about doing it and presenting it. I just couldn't visualize it.

I am also going to be doing something about that 'forgetting' and give you an option to automatically pause the application under certain conditions.

And, it will also have the ability to automatically open files, launch applications, and run scripts at designated points within your work cycle.
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tomos
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« Reply #6 on: August 07, 2007, 03:08:56 AM »

Wow, sound great App  Thmbsup good luck with it -

Off topic bits:
I know what you mean about the heat - a couple of summers ago it was round the 100 to 110 mark (36 to 40°) here for a long time & I was working in a room under the roof (as they say here)
Thats when you notice a CRT monitor & a computer are really heaters in disguise..

Quote from: app's sig
"You see, wire telegraph is a kind of a very, very long cat. You pull his tail in New York and his head is meowing in Los Angeles. Do you understand this? And radio operates exactly the same way: you send signals here, they receive them there. The only difference is that there is no cat." -- Albert Einstein
Grin Grin
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Tom
Ath
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« Reply #7 on: August 09, 2007, 11:46:12 AM »

UrlWolf,
Wouldn't WorkRave fit your requirements? It doesn't have as nice statistics that WorkPace has, but it's free (Open Source, actually), and that can't surely be said of WorkPace Sad
I've been using it for about 5 years now, as a restbreak timer, and have been pleased with it from the start. (After using WorkPace for about 1 year, which is also quite Ok, except for the pricetag)

The always on Top requirement can be filled by the display as a Toolbar in the Windows taskbar. (If that's not set to autohide)
It doesn't show the exact counters mentioned, but you can display most of that on demand, from the systemtray menu.

The main purpose of WorkRave is to try to avoid RSI related injuries, and I assume it's what you eventually want this utility for?

HTH
Ton
[Edit]
The WorkRave website is rather Dutch (sorry) but most should be able to find the Download link...
« Last Edit: August 09, 2007, 11:49:36 AM by Ath » Logged

urlwolf
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« Reply #8 on: August 18, 2007, 12:04:36 PM »

HI Ath,

actually, avoiding RSI is not the point of this program as much as avoiding distraction smiley

I have used workrave in the past; I stopped because it's pretty obstrussive.
Thanks anyway!
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wreckedcarzz
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« Reply #9 on: August 18, 2007, 02:47:09 PM »

thumbs up I think it would be a good idea, and I might be able to use it, I put things off a lot, and spend a lot more time at the PC then I should. smiley One question though, would you be able to pause the entire program (like while I am playing games)? tellme

I would be willing to give it a shot, coding it in AHK, but I am tied up with a couple other things I am doing with that. Maybe, but not right now. undecided
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tomos
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« Reply #10 on: August 18, 2007, 03:32:10 PM »

HI Ath,

actually, avoiding RSI is not the point of this program as much as avoiding distraction smiley

I have used workrave in the past; I stopped because it's pretty obstrussive.
Thanks anyway!

I used it (workrave) too for a good while.
While it's a wonderful programme I also found it too obtrusive -
I wouldnt want to put anyone off it ..
how you get on with it probably depends on your work methods etc
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Tom
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