As you may have read in my AntiRSI review from last week, repetitive strain injury (RSI) is common among heavy computer users. Problems like carpal tunnel syndrome and eye strain can become extremely serious and irreversible health conditions if left unchecked.
Time Out works on the same premise of AntiRSI, providing “normal” and “micro” breaks at pre-determined intervals. Time Out provides many more settings than AntiRSI when it comes to breaks and how the breaks are announced. While AntiRSI only allows you to set the time between and the duration of breaks, Time Out allows you to set the fade in and out timing as well as the break intervals and durations. You can reset the timer when your computer is idle for a preset length of time (so you only have breaks when you are actually working), as well as play sounds, execute workflows, scripts, or applications before and after breaks. When it is time for a break, your screen slowly fades as a timer comes up with buttons allowing you to postpone or skip your break.
After trying out both of the apps, I prefer AntiRSI for its simplicity and more appealing graphics. However, I would recommend you try out both apps because some people may find use for Time Out’s more advanced features and user-created plugins. Time Out 2 has been announced and is coming soon, which will include several (unannounced) new features. Time Out is freeware (but donations are appreciated) and is available from Dejal Systems here.