In 2008, I wrote a small tool WhatDidIDo for myself, because I wanted to know where I spent my time. In those days my stress level was a bit high, spending a lot of hours in front of my PC while I still felt that I didn’t have enough time to get all the work done.

The WhatDidIDo program was simple. It was written in Visual C++. It ran in the background, using SetWindowsHookEx() to capture the events which a window was activated and GetWindowThreadProcessId() and GetModuleBaseName() to find out which application does the activated window belong to. Then the program just wrote the data into a comma deliminated CSV file.

The tool worked well and later used by a few other team members too, as they also wanted to understand where they wasted spent their time. Here is the data from one of them, who was among the best developers we had at that moment:


A few days ago I saw someone recommending the RescueTime app. It instantly reminded me about WhatDidIDo. Isn’t it the same idea? How come I didn’t even think of turning WhatDidIDo into a startup company?

On the other hand, of course, turning WhatDidIDo into a startup company wouldn’t guarantee success. Actually there are quite a few similar apps out there, like ManicTime, which are not as hot as RescueTime. There would be a long way to go for WhatDidIDo.com to become today’s RescueTime. 

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