It's gone through a productive growing season, and now Monocle Society's new Mac task management app Pomodorable (US$4.99 introductory pricing) is ready for harvest. The app is designed to help busy workers get things done through Francesco Cirillo's Pomodoro Technique, and it does the job in a unique and inviting way. I was approached early this year by Kyle Kinkade, head of Seattle-based Monocle Society, to beta-test the app, and I'm glad I did.
Update: Due to issues with the name of the app being too similar to Cirillo's Pomodoro Technique, the app is being re-released in 2013 as Eggscellent with new features and a less tomato-centric user interface.
If you've used one of the other Pomodoro apps in the past, prepare to be blown away by Pomodorable. Most of the previous apps are just timers, letting you know when a 25-minute task period (Pomodoro) is done. Pomodorable does the timing part too, providing a distraction-free floating window that subtly animates the passage of time through a tomato plant with vines that grow longer and fruit (botanically, tomatoes are fruit; legally, they're a vegetable) that slowly ripens from green to juicy red.
Pomodorable would be a winner with just the timer, but fortunately there's much more to the app. Hover your mouse above the floating window, and it provides details on exactly how much time is left in the current Pomodoro and how many distractions you've fought.
Mountain Lion users will love the integration with Reminders, Notification Center and Notes. You can sync your tasks with Reminders -- add a task to Mountain Lion's built-in task management app, and it appears in the list of Pomodoros so you can get to work on completing it. When a Pomodoro is complete, you hear the timer ring, a Notification Center banner appears, and the completed Pomodoro appears in the list of notifications. Do you like keyboard shortcuts? Pomodorable lets you set shortcuts for toggling windows, stopping the current Pomodoro, or logging an interruption.
One of the pitfalls of the Pomodoro Technique is the possibility of distractions. Pomodorable has a way for you to set status messages for Skype, iChat/Messages and Adium to let others know that you're busy getting work done. In case there are interruptions from one of those sources (an external distraction) or you need to stop for some other reason, you can mark them. The choice of a squirrel icon to mark distractions harkens back to Dug the Dog in the movie "Up", a great choice by UI designers Bryan Bell, and Henrik Van Rysin.
Users of OmniFocus and Things will also find things to love about Pomodorable, as it integrates with those apps as well. Be sure to take a look at the short promotional video below, and if you're a Pomodoro fan, click your Mac App Store icon immediately and buy this app.