Introduction πŸš€

Thank you for downloading Timing!
Over the next few lessons, this course will help you get started with Timing.
After that, we'll dive a bit deeper to maximize the value you get out of the app.

Video Tutorial

If you'd rather have a visual introduction to Timing, we have prepared this video tutorial for you:

It covers roughly the first three days of this course and will tell you everything you need to know to get started with Timing..

Why Timing?

If you are anything like me, you've probably tried quite a few time tracking solutions over the years.
But the existing solutions don't really cut it.
Manual start/stop timers are cumbersome, and I kept forgetting to turn them on and off.
There are some automatic time trackers, but most of them are cluttered and not very accurate.
Plus, you can't really get an accurate timesheet out of them.

That's why I decided to build Timing.
Timing makes time tracking easy by combining automatic and manual tracking, for the best of both worlds.
It automatically tracks and categorizes as much time as possible, but lets you do manual adjustments where necessary.
And as a bonus, it automatically measures how productive you are.
Once you've tried this combination, you'll never want to go back to "normal" time tracking πŸ˜‰

As you can see, Timing is different from your regular time tracker.
That is also reflected in its interface:
Instead of focusing on starting and stopping timers, Timing is all about evaluating the data it already tracked.

To fully reap those benefits, this course will teach you how to use Timing optimally and adapt it for your purposes.

The Menu Item

To automatically track how you spend time, Timing has installed a little utility in your menu bar: If you have followed the steps in Timing's welcome flow, the menu item is already set up.
It will be tracking your time in the background, and it should launch automatically whenever you log in to your Mac.
It will even remind you daily about how productive you were!
If you want to track time manually via start/stop, you can also do that from the menu item (available in Timing Professional).

Timing uses the Accessibility system to track open file paths more accurately.
If you do not enable it, tracking will be less accurate, so now would be a good time to check that you have enabled that.

The Overview screen

With that out of the way, let's have a look at Timing's main screen: Okay, what you are actually seeing is probably a lot of empty charts.
But don't worry, these will fill up quickly.

These are the window's main components:

  • The tab bar. It lets you select different screens:
    • Overview. Gives you a quick glimpse of how you spent your time and how productive you were.
    • Review. Lets you account for all the time in your day, ensuring that everything is associated with the right projects. (More on that in the next lesson.)
    • Details. Shows more in-depth information on individual activities.
    • Reports. Lets you format and export data for further processing.
  • The tool bar. It has controls to view the project list, create a new task (available in Timing Professional), change the current date range, and filter or search your activities.
  • The main area. In Overview mode, this area tells you about the state of your time tracking:
    • Total time. You can see how much time you spent in total in the selected date range and when you worked the most.
    • Your productivity score. Gives you a quick estimate of how much you got done and when you are most productive.
    • A bar chart showing how your time is distributed across projects and weeks, hours or days.
    • A pie chart showing which projects you spent the most time on.
    • A pie chart showing which apps you used the most.
      It also has a small 'Share' button in the bottom left, in case you want to boast about your work πŸ™Œ

Projects, Tasks, Activities, Oh My!?

These are quite a few concepts!
In most cases, their intuitive meaning is what is reflected in Timing.
But if you want to double-check, feel free to check out the Glossary.

Conclusion

In this lesson you learned:

  • Timing automatically tracks what you are doing. For that to work, its menu item needs to be set up and running.
  • The Overview screen gives you a quick glimpse of how you spend your time.
  • Review mode helps you assign time to projects.
  • The Details and Reports screens let you analyze your data in-depth.

But how does Timing know which projects you worked on?

That will be the topic of the next lesson, once Timing has gathered more data for you. ⏰