During finals, We noticed that we wasted a lot of time on distracting websites such as social media websites. We realized we needed a tool that tracks website usage and blocks distracting websites. We hope this facilitates a better and more productive and informative environment for students and everyday users.
What it does
The chrome extension tracks the amount of time you spend on each tab and records in a pie chart. It also gives specific time-based data for each website you visit. In addition, you have the option of blacklisting a website for a certain period of time. The extension also sends a notification every hour telling the user to take a break from the computer.
How we built it
We used Google's Chrome extension API's to build it. Parts such as the notification system, the tab data, webrequest and more used this API to extract data to display to the user. For the statistical data, we used chart.js to display the overall tab usage and we used amcharts.js to give specific data for each tab.
Challenges we ran into
First off, this was our first time building a Chrome extension, it took some time to read the documentation and understand how to build an extension. Second, creating data for the graphs based on the time required us to build a few difficult algorithms. Third, blacklisting the websites took some time to understand and implement. Finally, extracting favicons from each website to display to the user also took some time to implement.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
In addition to completing our hack and learning a new skill set, we are proud of the UI/UX that we built. It is extremely easy to navigate and find statistical data within the extension. We were also proud of the amount the data that we were able to display to the user; getting more work done than we initially thought.
What we learned
Not only have we learned to build a Chrome extension, but as our first online hackathon, we learned to communicate and work as a team despite not being able to be next to each other.
What's next for TabWatch?
We are publishing this extension on the Chrome Webstore for everyone to use. We also plan to update the extension periodically.