This week’s app is great for freelancers but could be used for any task you’d like to track. It’s a simple, elegant time-tracking solution called Toggl.

Now, if I really wanted to incriminate myself, I’d use Toggl to track all of the little things I volunteer for because “they’ll only take a few minutes.” THAT would be illuminating. But for now, I primarily use it both for client projects and for my own personal projects. If you’re like me and have a really difficult time estimating how long it will take you to finish a task, this tool is going to be an eye-opener.

Toggl’s available as a desktop application, via their website, or on Android and iPhone…phones. It will allow you to create individual projects and measure to the second how much time you’re spending on them. It’s short on bells and whistles, which means you will spend less time procrastinating and more time, you know, tracking.

I’m impressed at how seamlessly the various versions of Toggl integrate with one another. Right now, I’m looking at the red button on both my phone and my laptop screen and they’re both in sync, telling me I’ve spent 50 minutes and 41 seconds on writing my columns for the next three weeks.

The free version of Toggl is terrific if all you need to do is track information for your own records – or to answer the question of “how long did I just spend on Pinterest?” (But do you really want to know?)

In a later column, I’ll talk about the premium version and how it can allow teams to collaborate and you to streamline your billing process if you’re a freelancer working with clients on an hourly basis.

58 minutes and 36 seconds. I think that’s good for now.

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Copyright 2012 Dorian Speed