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Show HN: Freework – Time tracking for freelancers (freework.com)
31 points by BenBach 10 months ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 12 comments

I’ve been working on and off for a few years to solve the time tracking problem for myself. I do a lot of things in a given day, and tracking granularly is quite hard. I’ve found I would rather just work, track it all somehow, then just bill / aggregate at the end of the week.

I’ve tried rescuetime and all sorts of solutions. One of the most interesting lately is https://timelyapp.com/memory-ai.

That all said, I recently stumbled on a really elegant solution in http://arbtt.nomeata.de/#what. Automatic Rule Based Time Tracking. Based on what apps are open, and the title of the windows (which can expose your file paths, url, etc) I can tag times. The great part is that it’s a store everything, classify later. So I can switch classification of times if I need to slice and dice a different way for a different report. All automatic. Need to add a new project? Git clone into my tracked directory and it just starts tracking a new project based on the directory name. Pretty slick.

Something similar for Windows is https://www.manictime.com/ . It tracks all activities and you can classify them later. It's core is free and there are paid features like take Screenshots. But tbh, the free version is more than enough.

Maybe another source of information is Microsoft Outlook. Last time I had a corporate Windows Desktop I remember it tracked the time I spent in Word (for instance).

Curious if you've tried WakaTime and what your impression was compared to others?

Why is this fundamentally different then the thousands of other solutions? Just about every IT consulting firm seems to have written their own variant of time tracking. It's not exactly rocket science now is it?

I kind of think it is rocket science, since so many people have tried to write their own variant of it. We don't really do that for version control, IDEs, compilers, email clients, browsers, or the myriad other tools software developers use daily. Sure, some of us do, but most of us don't. But I think we've all taken a stab at time-tracking and task-tracking, even if that just means we're writing things on post-it notes or in a journal. I don't think we've discovered an approach that suits most developers and teams yet.

I've yet to see a good open source one to use (either as is or by forking/contributing improvements).

I got the same question in my head as I show the title.

You are raining on a show HN?

Rightly or not, I looked for the pricing nav bar item and couldn't find it. Is this a monthly/annual pay-for service?

There are many instances of "free" on the site, but no explicit "this product is [free|pay-for]" statement anywhere that I could see.

The onboarding process seems indirect. It involves visiting the website. Using a phone. And then, I don't know what. But those complications are not a reason for optimism.

I say this because that's as much feedback on the project as I can offer. Since I am not likely to be user or customer, I checked it out only to provide you with feedback in the spirit of "Show HN". The more your "Show HN" shows the easier it is for people to provide feedback.

My intuition is that the more your "Show HN" shows, the more likely potential users/customers are to consider your project. I could be wrong. Requiring a text message to see more is an unexpected requirement when it comes to apps.

Good luck.

Not just for freelancers: consulting companies also use time tracking / billing tools.

Maybe part of your user base are consultants that hate their redmine/salesforce/erp time tracking tool and will gladly pay a small price to avoid having to log in and track whatever daily.

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