Today_Timer-macOS

Time journal

The easiest way to track your personal productivity

Coming soon to iPhone, iPad, & macOS

okroar-journal-device-mockup-oct-2020

In production

Time journal

I haven't figured out a witty name for it yet, but I'm working on a personal work journal that makes it easy to track what you’ve worked on.

The app runs a Pomodoro timer that asks “what am I working on right now?” every 30 minutes.

Simply jot down a bullet point or two and you’ll finish with a summary of how you spent your day.

Tools

Swift, Xcode, Figma

The problem

I wanted to make a smarter Pomodoro app with options like:

  • session/break timers to stay in sync with scheduled events and routines
  • do more sessions per break (i.e. only take one break per hour and still do 2-3 sessions per hour)

The pivot

While doing my research on the Pomodoro Technique, I came across this step for beginners:

"When your session ends, mark off one Pomodoro and record what you completed.”

Current Pomodoro apps don’t work this way. They prompt the user to write down the task before starting the session, not after, which is considered the “expert” approach.

I decided to build my Mac prototype the formal way and record tasks at the end of each session. The resulting experience was very positive. I was incentivized to use the app because I could see my accomplishments grow each day. Those entries grew into days and days of lists that had to be organized historically.

My timer had turned into a journal.

macOS prototype

I built a working prototype in Swift for Mac.

The layout is basic and I can't edit entries after I add them, but otherwise it's a solid app that runs for weeks at a time without problems.

Results

After dogfooding the app for months, I determined:

  • I naturally wanted to use the app
  • Forgetting to start the timer was regrettable
  • I would slack off / get distracted more than I expected
  • End of week/month reviews & planning got much easier
  • I can’t imagine working without it
okroar-timer-prototype-oct-2020

The timer window is split between a Pomodoro timer and today’s journal. Entries are shown in reverse order. The timestamp and bullet points are added automatically. The timer and list reset at midnight.

okroar-journal-prototype-oct-2020

The journal window keeps track of my daily entries. It's helpful to be able to go back and review my productivity at the end of each week and help me plan my next week.

Design prototype

To the right (or below) is an interactive demo of how to use the timer to write down what you're working on.

This was put together in Figma using a wireframe kit I've been working on.

Wireframes

okroar-timer-wireframes-oct-2020

Exploring various mobile designs, based on key features of the desktop prototype

okroar-timer-devices-wireframes-oct-2020

Timer wireframes for mobile, tablet, & desktop

okroar-journal-devices-wireframes-oct-2020

Journal wireframes for mobile, tablet, & desktop

Selected works

Time journalProductivity app for iPhone, iPad, & macOS

OmnicellDesign library & interactive kiosks

Star Wars APIAndroid design & code exercise

Exercise goalsProduct design exercise

Starsky RoboticsUX research & design for autonomous trucks

Disney Movies AnywhereSenior Android Developer, Product Designer

DayframeAutomated photo frame for social media

HD WidgetsRanked #1 paid app in 2011

App StatsPlay Store tracking and updates

CloudskipperMusic player

Flash apps2000 - 2011

Elemental design1994 - 2003

lion-nav-dark

@radley  •  Twitch  •  Mixcloud  •  Github  •  LinkedIn