After many years of trying to find the best way to track my time I've used many different methods. I've gone from writing everything down on a piece of paper to trying out all the latest and greatest of time tracking applications. Sure, most of them are really great. Some of them are even borderline outstanding but there is one problem with all of them. They all want to do too much.
Sure, I can understand why all the developers out there want to bring in more customers by offering more features but at what expense? Seems to me that everything I've got for my particular workflow has only fit in adequately. That's why I keep switching. I feel no loyalty to any time tracking app in the market today. There has been nothing that stands head and shoulders above the rest. It's come to the point where it looks like I'm going to have to do it on my own if I want it done right.
Before we get to the lists, you'll have to forgive my schoolboy attitude in repeating the 37signals mentality but it does hold merit for my needs and thus I feel it's well warranted.
- Either system wide hot key to show/hide timer window or easily hidden/minimized (or on the dashboard this would be sweet)
- Run multiple timers at once in one window
- Edit all times, even after they have been completed/punched out/checked out/assigned to projects
- Similar tasks can be grouped, which would total the hours worked on those tasks
- It only tracks the time I don't need the weather in Hawaii or even invoicing, there are other apps I use for that
- Exportable as XML/PDF/HTML/whatever (pick one, two, or more)
- Integration with iCal/Basecamp/Blinksale/Quicken/etc. (not exaclty necessary but would be nice)
I may just be going off my rocker but it seems that while some or all of the apps listed do many of the things I'm looking for, none of them do everything I'm asking for well. This is where I call upon you, good readers, do you use any of the apps listed above? Do they work in the ways that I'm looking for but I just haven't figured it out yet?