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RescueTime will let me know which apps that I  used often.

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However, in my not-so-productive days, when I spend much time procrastinating or on other distractions, RescueTime gives me a low score.

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It seems that I used more time on distracting activities!

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And I did not meet my writing goal, even though I spent more time on my computer!

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After using RescueTime for almost a year, I have made some modifications in my writing behaviour. First, RescueTime confirmed what I already knew; that is, from 12-3pm is not my productive period. I waste most of that time on distractions such as social media or reading the news. I now schedule other activities for that time period. Second, the app let me know not only how much time I have wasted, but also what I’ve been doing while distracted - and this ‘soft punishment’ feedback helps me force myself to go back to work later in the day.

RescueTime stresses their information collecting activities, stating:

Rescuetime will record information about the currently active application or website on your computer. We record the following information: application name, web site URL, window title, start time of use, end time of use, OS username, and computer machine name. We do not (and never will) collect keystrokes, form input, screenshots, or anything nefarious.

However, if you feel insecure in this regard, perhaps you might be better not to install it on your computer. Luckily this isn’t an issue for me - I’ve found RescueTime enormously beneficial for writing my Ph.D.

On a productive day with a higher score, I can go home with head high knowing that I have had a busy day writing. RescueTime will not tell me whether I’ve been working on my dissertation, but for sure it helps me make each day more productive than the last. If you want to consider using this application, you can download it from this link: https://www.rescuetime.com/ref/946936.