My biggest issue with all the time trackers out there is usually that they are either too broad (and will only provide me with the time spend in Obsidian, which isn’t very useful given I now use it for many many different aspects of my life/work), or too high workload (you have to manually toggles the various timers).
One approach I however have not seen anywhere though is a tag/source folder based one. All my notes are tagged based on their content and purpose. They are also classified in various folders based on a certain number of categories. A knowledge note will contain the field of studies, and a project related note will contain the project note. It turns out this is exactly the structure I would want reflected in the timer data breakdown.
If there was a way of simply logging when and how long a note was opened/edited for, it would be relatively trivial to then “categorise” these various duration into different projects based on the tags, source folder, and even date. An example of a log could be as follows:
This could then be further enhanced with a bit of manual post-processing by being able to add tags to the logs themselves.
This would eventually allow for a robust time-tracking approach, it being fully “structure free” in the logging process, and the interpretation step/structuration of the data being determined based on each note’s current content and location. The system would still allow for modifying tags, the logs being tag-independent, and even note renaming (given the log file isn’t too big and can be parsed quickly to be adjusted.
Additionally, this logging approach is also local first, sticking by the Obsidian ethos and ensuring the data is also available for other tools to leverage if need be.
I do not have the technical background to put this together, but this approach I believe could prove very effective for unlocking accurate time tracking in obsidian!
If anyone has the knowledge and time to take it on, feel free to do so!