The Stay Focusd app released earlier this year is designed to address productivity issues created by our beloved social web. Once installed on Chrome, it will only allow you (me) the self-allotted time to screw around on whatever sites you self-define as your personal time sucks. Then it blocks access to those sites.
I installed it only so I could give it an honest-to-goodness review, thinking “Sounds cool but I don’t really need that. I don’t spend hours on Facebook and Twitter.”
You can add as many sites as you want to your block list. So I gave myself a 30 minutes allotment for Facebook until 5pm.
Sounded reasonable. Um, it’s 10:45am and I have 6 minutes left!!!
Well… maybe 30 minutes was not so reasonable then. I can just allot a little more time. C’mon, I do work on Facebook too after all. But when I increase my minutes, I a pop-up appears that reminds me…
I click okay… and another pop-up. And another — all with quirky reminders that I am just gaming the system. Gasp! This thing is really keeping me honest.
The most clever feature is the Required Challenge, in my opinion. This setting says:
“If this option is selected, you will be required to complete a difficult — but not impossible — challenge before you are allowed to change any settings. This makes it inconvenient for you to change settings, therefore reducing the chances that you’ll cheat.”
I can’t cheat. So I’m stuck with my six minutes on Facebook until 5pm. I can’t even have it open in the background.
Of course, there’s always my phone….