Gerbil Time Tracker

Hamster is a cool little Linux tool that I have recently started to use and its made my time tracking a breeze.

Gerbil Time Tracker Logo

In the past, at the end of each week, I would have to try and remember how much time I spent doing different activities at work, so that I could record my time and bill the correct customers. This was a painful chore and sometimes required a bit of email archaeology, Skype log trawling and black-magic. Hamster allowed me to track my current activity with easy integration to my desktop and proactively record time instead of using retroactive sorcery.

I love the tool so much I thought I’d create my own PHP web based version which would allow me to use it from my phone and create all sorts of graphs. I have begun development on my tool and it is already usable. When I have a comparable set of features to Hamster, I plan to migrate my data across and open it up for other people to use!

WhereAmI Plugin Update

So far I have made a small PHP script for displaying where I am based upon a timetable (More info at WhereAmI.) Its still not a WordPress widget because I haven,t sorted out how to call the code within widgets.

I have all the information stored in a CSV file, but I might change this at some point. Its nice having the ability to edit it with Excel, but for some reason it doesn’t like to save Comma-Separated Value files with commas… you have to keep telling Excel you want them, go figure. This was one of my first attempts at actually coding in PHP rather than changing variables in an existing script. It went quite well, however It took me a little while to realise the epoch isn’t represented as midnight on Jan 1 1970 for my apparent system time, but rather time zone adjusted… It was all a little odd. One of the features I am thinking about adding to the script after I widgitise it, is the ability to override the current value e.g. quickly set it to ‘out of the office’. This could possibly be set with an expiry before going back to the timetable. A PHP interface for setting the timetable could be nice too.