If you are a heavy PC user like me, you’ll find yourself sitting down and then losing 3-4 hours almost instantly. There’s so many things you can do from work to entertainment and the vast potential of what the screen, keyboard and mouse can do makes the PC a significant time vacuum. Here’s how you can review how you have spent your time on your computer.
This software was first utilized to track how long my own PCs were left on and how often they were active or on standby. The use case for this was to estimate power consumption. Maniac Time is built like a ‘net nanny’ software. It monitors usage and is aimed at parents wanting to monitor their kids. I’m not really in favour of such spying activities. (If you want to monitor your kids, sit down with them or put the computer in a public space. Don’t secretly run things behind their back. Trust is built from a young age.)
What this software can be used is to track yourself. See how much time you are spending on each program and review your work processes in case you’ve been spending too damn long on a project, etc. Best of all, for all the features you need to audit your own PC usage – the free version of the software suffices.
Information Treasure Trove
Let the program run for a couple of days and you will get a whole lot of data presented in useful ways. I will run through them briefly. It is really straight forward. I will only highlight the interesting areas. There’s a lot to explore on your own.
This measures how long your PC is left on and from the time it was switched on and off.
Maniac Time does not only measure which progams are most accessed, it also measures which documents you worked the longest on.
Zooming into the day of your selection. Maniac Time gives you a timeline of what you did and in what sequence. The timeline is a brilliant historical walkthrough of your day.
A more granular view of what application you ran and what files were worked on can be viewed here. This is basically a detailed view of the timeline.
You can also view the applications you used and for how long. Obviously, I’ve been spending too much time on Chrome today.
Maniac Time is a brilliant program for auditing your time spent. It eats very little memory and presents its massive depth of information very well. Give it a shot. You’d be surprised how different your actual PC habits are compared to what you perceive them to be.