is a rather unusual piece of software. I tried it out in its previous incarnation (Onlife
), but it has now been released under a new name and seems considerably more polished. Its developer calls Slife an "awareness browser" which "let's you visualize and organize your computer activities like never before." Basically, Slife "observes" your use of applications like Safari, Mail, iChat, iTunes, Word, NetNewsWire, etc., and records what you're doing with them (e.g. what web pages you looked at, the text of your emails, what songs you listened to, etc.). You can then visualize
these interactions in a variety of different ways (e.g. one visualization is a kind of scatterplot over time) and go back and see what you were doing on your computer at any given time. In other words, it's sort of like a global history of your computer use, which instead of merely recording what pages you've looked at in your browser, records what you were doing at any given time in a bunch of different applications. You can also search through all of this mess, to find things you were doing, but perhaps lost track of or forgot where you looked at them. Finally, SlifeLabs offers a subscription service called Slifeshare
where "you can share your Slife activities such as browsing the web and listening to music with your friends, family or anyone you care about" (I'm not entirely sure why you'd want to do that, but whatever). While something like this is definitely not going to appeal to everyone, Slife has a lot of potential to help you keep track of things you've lost and to understand better how you use your own computer. And since it's a free download
, I think it's definitely worth a look.