Memory 101

The basics of Memory explained

Lisa avatar
Written by Lisa
Updated over a week ago

Plans 💳 : Everyone

User Permissions 👥: Everyone

Memory is the automatic heart powering Timely. It’s an app that captures everything you do on your computer throughout the day in the background for you — without the need for any timers or note taking. It lives inside Timely as a space called (you guessed it) “Memory”.

The concept of Memory is new to a lot of people and comes with a few bits of Timely terminology. This article aims to break down the basic building blocks of Memory in Timely to help you get cracking with automatic time tracking. Click the links below to jump to a specific section:

First things first, you’ll want to make sure you’ve downloaded and installed Memory on your computer. Feel free to check out our installation guides for Mac and Windows.

What are memories?

We refer to the individual work events Memory captures as “memories”. These are uploaded to a daily timeline inside Timely that is 100% private to you. Each memory shows you the specific web or desktop app you worked in, with a title of the document or page you visited — as well as when you accessed it and how long you spent on it. Memories can be events from your calendar, your GPS location for Android and iOS, a file you worked on, a video call you attended, an email you sent or a website you visited.

You need to set up Memory on your Mac or Windows device to start capturing work memories. Once enabled, head to your Day view in Hours. You’ll be able to arrange your memories in either a timeline or list view.

The Timeline view lays out your memories in chronological order, pinning them to the time they occurred during the day. It allows you to review simultaneous tasks (like presenting a document or answering an email in a meeting) or ー if you have Timely's location tracker enabled ー when you were in a certain place:

List view uses the same space as the Timeline view, but provides more detail for each individual memory. If you've been logging time using your memories, Memory AI will organize the List view for you ー prioritizing it so that memories you are most likely to log appear at the top:

While in List view, click the arrow to the right of any memory to view more details about it. Click the arrow to the right of the timestamp and you’ll be able to drill down to further detail such as file names or the websites you visited:

When looking at your logged and planned hours on Week or Month view, you’ll also see the Memory (brain) icon in the top-right corner of each date. Clicking this will take you to Day view where you can review the individual memories captured for that day:

What is Memory history?

Memory history is the cumulative record of all your memories. It lets you go back in time to look at past memories for previous days. Just click through the calendar days on Day view in Hours, or switch to Week or Month view for a wider overview.

All our plans offer unlimited Memory history, meaning there’s no limitations to how far back in the past you can delve! See everything you've worked on since you first installed Memory. ⏪ ⏩

Memory states explained

Memories can appear in one of three states: unlogged, logged and ignored.

A memory is unlogged by default until you link it to a project or ignore it. Unlogged memories therefore require an action. Provided you have our Memory AI feature enabled, every time you link unlogged memories to projects, you teach Timely your logging habits. Once you’ve linked a few examples, Timely will start to draft time entries for you based on your memories.

Logged memories are those you've linked to a project. Linked memories generate entry drafts, which you need to review and approve to turn them into logged time entries. Every edit you make trains your AI in the process.

Ignored memories are those you do not want to link to a project or log to entries. Ignoring a memory is like logging it to a hidden project. It's super useful for memories that are not relevant to your work or reporting.

To ignore a memory, hover over it on the timeline or list view then click “Ignore”:

If you've made a mistake, hover over the memory and hit 'Restore' to move it back to your unlogged list:

Deleting memories

Even though Memory data is completely private to you, you might still want to delete a memory from your timeline. To do so, hover over the memory, then click on the trash icon in the upper-right-hand corner to delete it from your timeline...forever!

To delete a memory from List view, hover over the memory and click the '...' to reveal the delete option:


Do you have Memory for mobile devices?

At the moment, we only offer Memory for your computer and while Memory can't currently capture mobile work activity in the same way as our desktop apps for Mac and Windows, it's certainly an interesting idea for us to consider in future. Ultimately, we want you to benefit from Timely wherever your work takes place ー so as soon as Apple and Google make this type of tracking viable, we'll get on it. 🛠

In the meantime, check out our GPS location time tracking for iOS and Android, and let us know about particular mobile integrations you'd like to see here!

What’s the difference between ignored and deleted memories?

Deleting a memory removes it from Timely permanently. whereas ignoring a memory teaches the AI that this memory is unimportant and is not linked to a project you want to log time against. Keep in mind that memories are private and cannot be viewed by anyone on your account. We recommend ignoring a memory to ensure that you can access it again in the future.

What happens when I ignore a memory from a draft or logged entry?

Ignoring a memory from a draft or logged entry will move it to the Ignored list in Timely. If you just want to remove a memory from a draft or entry, the 'Ignore' action is not appropriate. Instead, just click the event to unlink it. This will move that memory to the unlogged group so you can link it to a different project. Similarly, you can add an unlogged memory to an entry by clicking on it from the list of memories on the righthand side of the entry window.

Can I delete all of my memories at once?

While it will severely limit the value you get from automatic time tracking, you also have the option to quickly delete whole chunks of your Memory history. It’s your data after all, and we want to help you manage your memories however you want.

You’ll find this option by going to Settings > Profile, then scrolling down to the “Delete memories” link:

Just select the timeframe of memories you want to delete and hit “Submit”. Keep in mind that it can take up to seven days for memories to be deleted:

From this same page you can see a history of all bulk memory deletion requests, including the status, scope and date they were submitted:

Note: This process permanently deletes memories from all Memory-related tools (Timely, Dewo) and their integrations. All unapproved AI drafts with memories associated during that time period will also be deleted, but planned time drafts with no memories associated will not be affected. Importantly, your AI model will remain unaffected.

What is the difference between deleting and ignoring memories?

Deleting a memory removes it from Timely permanently.

Ignoring a memory teaches your AI that this memory is unimportant and is not linked to a project you want to log time against.

Memories are private and cannot be viewed by anyone on your account. We recommend ignoring a memory to ensure that you can access it again in the future.

Is my data safe/private?

Did this answer your question?