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StayFocusd

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CNET Editors' review

StayFocusd is a Google Chrome extension that helps Internet procrastinators focus on their work instead of browsing copious amounts of time-wasting material. This add-on is useful when you want to limit how much time you spend on a particular Web site, or even the entire Internet. StayFocusd is customizable and intuitive--it's simple to create detailed Web-surfing guidelines--but beware: this extension is harsh; make sure you really want to block your sites.

After downloading the add-on, a round blue icon will show up on the right-hand side of your address bar. While you are on the site that needs blocking, click this icon and click "block entire page." Make sure to set the time limit for this page (length of your viewing allowance until the site is blocked) by clicking on the settings link. The circular icon will then turn red, and every time you click on it a timer will be counting down until the time you say goodbye to your time-wasting page.

The many different ways that Stay Focused can be customized includes the option to turn it off on specific days, hours, and a specific time when the tool will be reset. It is possible to enable certain subpages of Web sites while blocking the rest of them. These options, as well as the configurable list of allowed/blocked Web sites, are all available when you click on the Settings link. Once you select this link, a new tab will pop up with these options. If you are denouncing the Internet for its capacity to distract you, there is a Nuclear option, which will block the entire Web after a time limit of your choice. If you are not this extreme, you can choose to block all Web sites other than your allowed sites.

This add-on is very unforgiving. Once a site is blocked, you will not be able to access it until the next day. Neither is there a reverse button for the nuclear option. When you try going back to a blocked site, this message appears: "Shouldn't you be working?" And not only does it guilt you, there is another message asking for a donation.

For all of the unappeasable details, there's a pretty extensive FAQ section available (which you can get to by clicking on the Help link) once you've downloaded the add-on. Use StayFocusd if you are tired of spending aimless amounts of time indulging in the crooks and crannies of the Internet instead of working.

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All User Reviews

Results 1-4 of 4

  • 5.0 stars

    "This app solved my future!(from an Asia boy)"

    July 19, 2012  |   By c15219523

    Version: StayFocusd 1.3.2

    Pros

    I am a student from Asia.Because I don't have any credit card to donate money,I can only use my poor English to show my appreciation.
    Your invention help people to change and win their futures.

    Cons

    Thank StayFocusd very much.

    Reply to this review

    Was this review helpful? (0) (0)

  • 5.0 stars

    "This app solved my internet addiction problem. Great!!!"

    February 9, 2012  |   By tahmus

    Version: StayFocusd 1.2.0.15

    Pros

    Brilliant app makes it possible to control time spent on distracting websites which tend to compromise productivity.
    Very customizable.
    Provides very easy and intuitive capacity to tailor settings in order to get maximal protection against wasteful sites.
    Provides variable levels of deterrence against modifying settings in order to cheat. Deterrents (settings access challenges) have served their purpose in preventing me from changing settings unless I REALLY need to.
    Very effective in that it offers ability to even limit time on sites which were linked to by one's designated blocked sites.
    Allows ability to limit internet usage to specific self-designated productive sites providing the ability to have the benefit of using a computer without the detriment of the inherent distractability.

    Cons

    Only Con that I can think of is the inability to use this app with other browsers. Consequently I uninstalled both Firefox and IE to provide maximal control and prevent myself from using other browsers to "cheat"

    Summary

    Essential tool for the internet addicted and easily distracted. If you are among those and if you are wondering how to improve productivity and curtail wasteful tendencies then do download this app.

    Reply to this review

    Was this review helpful? (0) (0)

  • 4.0 stars

    "Awesome, Annoying, Efficient."

    July 30, 2010  |   By jinxr

    Version: StayFocusd 1.0.28

    Pros

    A self control booster.

    Cons

    Guilts you and hurts kittens.

    Summary

    Looking forward to trying this back at school.

    Reply to this review

    Was this review helpful? (0) (0)

  • 4.0 stars

    "Really good."

    July 29, 2010  |   By rondo341

    Version: StayFocusd 1.0.28

    Pros

    Works just as it said.

    Cons

    Cannot be substituted for parental controls; can be disabled easily.

    Summary

    Great is you don't plan on disabling it.

    Reply to this review

    Was this review helpful? (0) (0)

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