If ever there was a time when I wanted a favorite Mac app to become an iPhone and iPad app, it’s this one. This is the story of a simple Mac-only task timer called ‘hr.’
If you have a need to time the tasks you put into a project for personal or commercial use, hr does just that and not much more. Click to set up a task. Click to add tasks to categories (which I view as projects). Click to start or stop the timer for each task.
Less Is More, Small Is Beautiful
It doesn’t take much effort to find task and project timer apps. The Mac App Store has plenty, and the iTunes App Store for iPhone and iPad has probably a few hundred, if not more. Here’s the problem with most of those I’ve tried. They’re clunky and difficult to use. Or, there’s nothing there but a timer and a name, and too many are anything but user friendly.
hr is different because it’s so, well, Mac-like. This app begs you to use it and that’s what usability is all about.
Tasks are what make up projects so timing a task should be easy and linking the task to a category or project should be the next logical step, right?
That’s what hr does with remarkable efficiency. I hesitate to call it minimalist, though it doesn’t have many features it does have the ones you want. Keep clients and projects organized through the categories section.
Tasks can be prioritized and archived, and even exported as a standard CSV file for billing, or to be added to a spreadsheet or invoice app (not included, of course).
hr’s timer works simply, too. Click to start the timer. Click to stop the timer. Do both on a per task basis. Or, let it pause or idle automatically according to a set time of inactivity. Each timed session can be edited, of course.
One feature that might be useful is to allow for multiple task timers running at the same time, but that’s a minor issue for most (except the hungrier-than-normal billable hour crowd who don’t mind charging one client for time devoted to another).
hr would be perfect if it had a companion iOS app that synchronized data between devices and I would pay to have a similar version that worked on iPhone and iPad and synchronized tasks and projects between devices.