Publicspace.net, which produces “trialware” for the Mac and Windows platforms, has released version 2.8 of “MacBreakZ!,” a personal ergonomic assistant that monitors your keyboard and mouse activity and recognizes automatically when you are taking short breaks.
It suggests appropriate times for you to take a rest or recovery break, based on your activity level. MacBreakZ! supports “microbreaks,” short breaks (10 seconds or less) that interrupt long periods of continuous typing or mouse use, which are commonly regarded as the main reason for RSI in hands, wrists and fingers. They also help to prevent eyestrain and focusing difficulties after long periods of screen work, according to Frank Reiff of Publicspace.net.
If you decide to take the suggested break, MacBreakZ! presents you with a range of stress-relieving and posture enhancing stretching exercises. During the remainder of the break MacBreakZ! displays ergonomic tips designed to provide you with basic ergonomic knowledge. Version 2.8 enhances the utility’s “microbreaks” feature.
Reiff said the main reason for MacBreakZ! are to prevent repetitive strain injuries, promote healthy and pain-free computing, and aid the recovery from repetitive strain injuries. He added that MacBreakZ! achieves this by:
Monitoring user activity and suggesting appropriate times for rest and recovery breaks;
Providing a range of stretching exercises designed to relieve muscular tension and improve static posture;
Providing ergonomic information on how to use your computer in a healthy manner.
You can download MacBreakZ!, a US$24.95 product, from the
utility’s Web site.