There are plenty of time-tracking apps for the Mac that automatically keep track of when you’re logged in. Some even provide granular data on how much time you spend on a particular app.a named balance A slightly different approach to timekeeping is being taken, allowing users to manually input and output the time they spend in front of the screen.
Balance wants to help users develop a healthy set of work habits, not capture granular data about their productivity. It won’t tell you how long you’ve had Slack, Microsoft Teams, Chrome, or any other application open on your computer, but it will provide general insights into your overall usage of the system and how much time you spend in various sessions throughout the week.
To make this system work, Balance will send you an alert if your machine has been on for more than five minutes but you haven’t clocked in. Clocking in is also easy, just lock your Mac. Unfortunately, Balance will not check in if your system goes into hibernation.
Since there’s no automatic tracking, the app has no way of knowing if you’ve taken a break even when you’re away from your computer. So it will remind you to take a break after 60 minutes. You can easily fine-tune such settings according to your convenience.
balance There’s also a Pomodoro timer (25 minutes on, 5 minutes off) for you through the Focus Mode menu. The app lives in your Mac’s menu bar, so you have quick access to all options. By default it shows the active time for the current session, but you can change this to the total session duration, including breaks or the time since the last break.
Alexander Sandberg, the developer of Balance, said he created the app because he wanted a timekeeper who understood work-life balance. He told TechCrunch in an interview that while working from home, he often sat in front of the system after work hours, which is when he thought of building Balance.
“I chose a manual timekeeping system for Balance because I believe it helps create a ‘ritual’ to check in and sign out for work. Especially when working from home, having something to help you differentiate between work and non-work hours is a This is important. For example, I’ve heard of people walking to and from “the office” at the beginning and end of the workday, even though their office is at home. This is to help the mind and body separate life from work,” he told TechCrunch.
While Balance helps create a habit of clocking in and out, it can take some getting used to. You may have many sessions that you forget to start or end. So you could end up with false positives on both ends.
Balance is free for everyone, and the Pro version starts at $2.49 per month (or $24.99 per year). Paying customers will get features like session history with trending data. Balance also gives users the option to export logs if they want to stop using the app or just want to analyze their data differently.
Sandberg said he’s building more specialized features, such as a better overview of conversation history (including month and year); categorization and labeling of conversations; and app and website blocking to help users focus more.