ActoTracker is a free Mac app that automatically tracks all of the activity on your Mac. You might show up at the office on Wednesday having completely forgotten what you were working on Monday. You might wonder what specific website you went to while researching that lit paper, and not have a record of the history stored in your browser. With ActoTracker, you can pull up this kind of information, and much more.
So, what can ActoTracker track? Well, the developer says it can track the time spent viewing or changing any document from any document-centered application, like Word, Excel, Photoshop, Illustrator, Keynote, Pages, etc. It will track the URL and time spent viewing websites in both Safari and Chrome, and Firefox can be tracked with an ActoTracker plugin. It also tracks web apps like Gmail, Google Calendar, Confluence, and the like. Email activity can also be tracked in Outlook, Mail, Calendar, while IM activity can be tracked for Adium, Skype, and other messaging services.
All you need is an Intel Mac running a 64-bit version of OS X 10.7 or later, and have Access for Assistive Devices enabled in the System Preferences. Just launch System Preferences and click on the Accessibility icon. You’ll be able to enable devices in the lower left corner with a checkbox.
Download ActoTracker, currently in beta, from the developer’s website, and put it into your Applications folder when downloaded. Double click on the app icon to start the app, and allow it to update if it asks you to. ActoTracker will appear as a menu bar app. Click on the little circle icon, and choose Automatic Recording. Then, use your Mac as usual.
After some time, ActoTracker will populate its journal with whatever it is you do on your Mac. Click on any of the entries and hit the spacebar for a quicklook at the activity’s window. Click the Perspectives button to get a list of your activities via timeline, on a calendar, or as a tree map chart.
All in all, ActoTracker has a ton of different ways to look at the activity on your Macintosh, and it might even be a way to keep track of what happens on your Mac when you’re not using it, to see what your kids are up to, for example. Just remember: with great power comes great responsibility.