Indie Log #1

New member in the family, New beginnings

As you may know is quite difficult to work with a new-born at home. The first days it was impossible for me to do anything, all the time is focused on the new little member of the family, and I was feeling exhausted.

After a few days, I started to find some moments of freedom during the day. Still to much tired to do anything constructive, I used it to think more about the strategy.

I realized how it is very important for me to communicate more on my developments. Not because I am famous and it interest someone, but because it will force me to keep being motivated on this project. Thus the creation of this log. I don't give you the guaranty I will make one every week, it will mainly depend of if I have interesting things to say or not !

As you may know I am freelance, and have a contract with a company, that ask me a regular 9-5 dedication. After my working days, I realized that it can be very difficult to keep the focus on my side projects. I can finish work late, I have other things to do, cooking, groceries, appointments etc... I realized that starting 18:00 I have a lot of trouble focusing, and a coding sessions often ends up in YouTube browsing about topics that have nothing to do with my work :D

I tried many times to adopt an Wake up early routine, but it has always been difficult. I am living in Spain, I culturally tend to go to bed late, and therefore wake up late.

But I have to use this amazing new arrival in my life : My Daughter ! As she wakes us up every 3 hours, it is the perfect little clock I needed. Plus, on the side of my contract, I am in paternity leave for the next 4 weeks, so I will try to make the most of it !

Why building Flowmodoro ?

I am a senior developer with a big tendency to loose focus. I tend to take my time to code and easily fall into the YouTube trap. When the deadline is getting near, my stress levels are visible from space.

So I tried a lot of different techniques. Websites blockers and time blocking didn't work for me. Pomodoro was quite motivating but I found it a problem with Pomodoro : if you are focused, it will break this focus every 25 minutes.

When developing, 25 minutes is not a big focus time to me. Stopping after 25 minutes is pulling me out of my "flow" state. If I was not interrupted by this imposed break, I could have keep my focus for a longer period of time.

This is where Flowmodoro comes :

The Flowmodoro method, also known as the Flowtime technique, is a compelling variation of the Pomodoro technique. Unlike Pomodoro, which relies on alarms and predefined time intervals, Flowtime encourages working without alarms or strict time blocks. Instead of adhering to set timeframes, the focus is on working for as long as one can maintain concentration, fostering a "flow state" where individuals are fully engrossed in a task.

Unlike Pomodoro, where alarms may disrupt the flow state, Flowtime allows individuals to work continuously until they feel the need for a break. This technique is particularly suitable for those who find constant alarms limiting or interruptive. The key is to select a primary task to achieve a flow state and work on it until a break is warranted. Unlike Pomodoro, there is no strict time constraint; the emphasis is on preserving the flow state.

In Flowtime, breaks are taken when individuals feel fatigued or distracted, and the duration of these breaks is flexible. Although the tasks are still segmented, and breaks are rewarded, the absence of a timer makes Flowtime an excellent alternative for those who require more time to immerse themselves in their work and stay focused.

The break time after a focus session should also depend on the focus time. The longer the focus, the longer the break.

Interested ? Register in the mailing list to be part of the private Beta :

The actual state of the app

A few months ago I started developing this app. The goal was to be able to track my focus sessions, calculate my breaks time. Give me some alarm when I have to go back to work. And more importantly, try to understand when my body feels the best for a focus session.

The app in it's actual development state include a working "Stopwatch" screen, a "Settings" screen, and a basic "History" screen to see the last entries.

Here is how it currently looks.

Even if it is very basic, all this is functional so far ! You can quit the app and come back, the stopwatch will sill be running so even if your phone run out of battery, this should not be an issue. The only issue I have so far is that is that I load all the entries on the History page. This could result, with time, in slower loading times. I guess this will be a tiny refactor to do in the future :)

Work for the upcoming weeks

Next week I will start working on the "Stats" page. To display some graph about your flow history. This is actually where the most important part of the app will be. My idea is that we should be able to identify which days, and which hours are the most productive. I already made a draft of the general idea for this page :

When this is done I will try to handling interruption count. The idea behind interruption counts is to be able, with one tap of a button, to say "I lost focus for a few seconds because my colleague came to tell me how was his weekend, but I am still in a flow and I don't want to take a break yet". The goal is to be able to have statistics about these interruptions, to put them in correlation with the flow state

Then I will try to add some bug reporting system, to have quick alerts if something bad happens, and also suggestions. I would also like to have a look on Shorebird to be able to push dart code update hotfixes quickly.

Then I will adapt the existing dark mode to make it really usable. For now it is automatic according to the device settings, and you need to restart the app if the settings change. Not ideal. I plan to improve on this as I know some of you are more in the dark side of the force.

This is all for this log ! See you next time !

If you like what I do, and would be part of the private Beta, register yourself here :

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