A Freeware Timer featuring Speech Recognition for Mac OS X
Chimoo Timer is a countdown/up timer for Mac OS X featuring speech recognition and text-to-speech support. Give Chimoo Timer a try for all your timing needs!
In addition to the main timer window pictured below, a mini window, multiplier window (for counting frames per second), and menu extra are also available. Any combination of these can be displayed simultaneously, or you can hide Chimoo Timer's dock icon and have only the faceless menu extra shown. Fonts and colors can now be customized on the two larger windows allowing you to create very large timers for distant viewing, or compact timers to conserve screen real estate. The time display can also be customized to display HH:MM:SS, natural language, or seconds only. Fractions of a second can be shown or hidden, and many notification options are available.
Why would I want such a simple timer? Chimoo Timer doesn't hog your processor - especially when it's in the background. There are many things a speech recognition timer is handy for. One example is as a stretch/exercise/yoga timer. Enable the speech recognition, set the countdown to an appropriate number such as thirty seconds, and then you can control the timer with your voice from the floor across the room - no buttons needed. When the timer expires, simply say "start timer" again and it will begin counting down again. Curious how much time is left? Ask the timer - "current value" - and it will read you the remaining time. If the room you are in becomes too noisy for speech recognition, you can even tell the timer to turn it off by saying "disable speech recognition."
It's also useful for brewing tea at your desk, keeping track of time worked, or reminding yourself to take a break after a set interval. Speaking of taking breaks, if you're interested in RSI (Repetitive Strain Injury) prevention, you should also try out the excellent and freeAnti RSI which is designed expressly for that purpose. Read a review of AntiRSI on our Software Picks web page.
Sometimes simple is better. Chimoo Timer may not be too flashy, but it is very easy to use and doesn't try to do too much. We believe Chimoo Timer is the first and only speech recognition enabled timer for Mac OS X (although others are sure to follow). Give it a try - maybe you'll like it.
Chimoo Timer is mentioned in the U.S. News and World Report article: Pull the Plug on Tech Distraction!
Chimoo Timer is open source for your peace of mind.
What Can I Say? (Speech Recognition):
Chimoo timer responds to the following words and phrases:
- Start timer
- Starts the timer if it wasn’t running.
- Stop timer
- Stops the timer if it was running.
- Reset timer
- Resets the timer.
- Current value / Speak time
- Reads the current timer value.
- Log time
- Logs the current time and timer value to the log in the main drawer.
- Open preferences
- Opens the Chimoo Timer preferences.
- Switch to count down mode
- Toggles the mode; only available if already in count up mode.
- Switch to count up mode
- Toggles the mode; only available if already in count down mode.
- Disable speech recognition
- Turns speech recognition off.
- Free! (donations still appreciated ;-))
- Speech recognition for timer control; see above.
- Text to speech for counting seconds and speaking alerts.
- Optional "tick" sound on hours, minutes, or seconds.
- Count up and count down modes.
- Optional floating mini window takes up less space on your screen.
- Optional multiplier view for counting frames per second (fps), etc.
- Optional menu extra displays in the menu bar.
- Dock menu to control timer.
- Low CPU usage; especially when in background or hidden.
- Written with Cocoa - native to Mac OS X.
- Universal binary - PPC and Intel native.
- Customizable settings for what to do upon timer expiration.
- Optional feature to warn before stopping timer - great for timing important things when you don't want to accidentally reset or stop the timer.
Ideas for Future Enhancements
- "History" of recent timings?
- Allow longer count down intervals.
- International support.
- Allow multiple timers.
(Email us with any other ideas you have!)