Reverse timeboxing for android
July 9, 2013 2:18 PM   Subscribe

Need to log and categorise how I am spending my day at work, preferably using an android app.

I have a rather complex job in which I do a whole range of very different things. It's quite hard to capture what I do and following on from a colleague I wanted to try and capture my day in timeboxes so that I could demonstrate to management what exactly I do all day. It's also for myself - if I know what my current process is I can change that process and deliberately timebox my day in a more efficient manner.

I wondered if anyone knew any android apps (I've just tried searching on google play and generally on google) that they strongly recommend, or other means of trying to capture what I am working on through the day at regular intervals (probably 15 min chunks). I tried Lifehacker's quicklogger in a previous life, when I had a largely desk-based job, but I really need something equivalent (and ideally that would let me quickly categorise the kind of activity I am doing) on the fly as I don't have fixed access to a computer anymore.

I am also open to pen and paper suggestions, but it would need to be some simple manner without alarms that would trigger data capture.

tldr; how can I capture my work day in 15 min chunks efficiently without breaking my flow.
posted by inbetweener to Work & Money (4 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Perhaps try Jiffy -- it's free for up to 3 projects, and then $2 for unlimited projects, so you can test it out a bit before committing to paying money for it.
posted by brainmouse at 2:25 PM on July 9, 2013

Best answer: Try toggl (search the Android app store). It will be way easier if you are OK with at least doing a bit of setup and ongoing config on a full PC - you can create multiple "clients" and multiple projects per client, which are easy to select but a pain to edit on mobile. There is a free version and I believe the premium edition adds export functionality for QuickBooks, etc., if you need to use your records to bill clients.

My only complaint is that it infrequently leaves the last timer of the day running despite the fact that it appears to be shut off in the interface. For this reason I usually create a "misc" or "stopper" timer and always click on that before quitting for the day.
posted by Joey Buttafoucault at 2:52 PM on July 9, 2013 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Pen and paper: David Seah makes numerous versions of a task planner that I love and have used for years in various formats. The PDFs are free to print your own, but I bought the notebook he's selling via Amazon and love it - very high quality.

Someone did adapt these forms to Adobe Air, but you probably wouldn't be able to run it on android.
posted by Lyn Never at 3:35 PM on July 9, 2013 [5 favorites]

Try TagTime. There's an explanation here of why it works (which is not very intuitive, since it is pinging you at random intervals to stochastically build up a full picture of what you do when, rather than asking you to write down everything always).
posted by lollusc at 8:11 PM on July 9, 2013

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