The renowned Pomodoro productivity technique has been turned into a Google Chrome Extension for Slack giving us one more reason to love artificial intelligence (AI).
Invented by Francesco Cirillo in the late 1980s, the Pomodoro technique enlists the idea that uninterrupted work is the key to productivity. Every hour is broken up into sections of productive 25 minute periods and 5 minute breaks. In the 80s, a simple kitchen timer would manage your day; now, Tomatobot will join your Slack team and monitor your tasks to keep you distraction-free.
Pomodoro was named after a tomato-shaped kitchen timer, one of those kitschy 80s accessories that both timed your cookies and could hide conspicuously in your produce. The Pomodoro timer plus AI equals Tomatobot (obviously). Tomatobot is not the first Pomodoro app and it certainly won’t be the last. It seems every other productivity app references the Pomodoro technique in some unique way, but this particular extension works with Slack in a novel way.
When you wish to start a task, simply type /startwork, and Tomatobot will begin the countdown and let you know when your 25 minutes of distraction-free work is up.
When (not if) something distracts you, a text from your boss, a grocery list item, a brilliant idea for that book you always wanted to write, simply type /distraction reply to Boss, or /distraction Princess should be stuck in basement, not a tower! That way, during your 5 minute break period, Tomatobot will remind you of your distractions and you can address them in a timely manner.
Once you’ve finished a task simply type /completed and Tomatobot will log what you’ve done over the course of the day. If you want to look back over your completed work, maybe you need to prove to your team your were productive working from home last Tuesday, type /review Tuesday to get a list of completed tasks. Want to share it with the team? /Review Public Tuesday will make the review public to the rest of the channel.
Tomatobot is one more productivity extension to add to the growing list, but its unique Slack integration and /distraction tool certainly make it one of the more intriguing plug-ins currently available.