As much as you may convince yourself that you’re a productive, well focused and difficult to distract person when it comes down to work, the fact is that the internet is ruled by kittens and you just can’t get enough of them. For many people, especially those who work remotely, the temptation to check your Facebook feed or read an interesting article is sometimes too much to overcome, often leaving them wondering where the time went. Time Sink is an excellent Mac app, worth $4.99 in the Mac App Store, that tells you just how you’ve been spending your time. Not only does the app have an excellent interface, but is feature rich, allowing you to create ‘app pools’ to measure the time spent on a particular task which may involve using more than a single app. It additionally gives you the option to run either as an application window, or from the Menu Bar. At the same time, it supports an activity monitor in its Dock icon, which pretty much means you can’t escape the fact that you’re wasting precious time.
Time Sink starts tracking your usage of other apps the second it launches. It measures time separately for active apps and those running in the background.
The tool asks you to choose at start up if you want to run it as an app or from the Menu Bar. You can change the options at any time afterwards. Note that the app measures time for apps in the background separately. You can create a ‘pool’ of apps by dragging and dropping them from the top half of the window to the bottom half. The pool measures the collective time you’ve spent on the apps added to it. To get a summary of how productive you’ve been, click the Activity Report tab, and app usage will be displayed as a graph.
To switch modes, go to Time Sink’s preferences and toggle the Run as dockless menu bar application to suit your needs. The app allows you to define apps or windows that it should ignore within the Blacklist tab in preferences, lets you customize which items are reported in the activity report, and also lets you export it.
Overall, the app is feature rich and the interface is amazing. Depending on how you like to work, you can keep it open as a window on the desktop, or send it to the menu bar for a more unobtrusive monitoring.