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A simple timeclock/timecard application for use in Django-powered Web sites.

Project description

This application will allow users of Django-powered websites keep track of the time they spend on different projects. It’s a work in process.


  • Configurable: Pendulum can be configured to operate on several Django-powered sites. The period lengths can be configured as monthly or as a fixed-length period.

  • Projects: You can have an unlimited number of projects to be able to categorize hours spent working on certain tasks. Each project can be activated/deactivated as necessary via the Django admin.

  • Activities: Activities allow you to further categorize work done on particular tasks for each project.


django-pendulum requires a modern version of the Django framework. By modern I simply mean a version with the newforms-admin functionality. If you’re running on Django 1.0 or later, you’re good.

django-pendulum also relies upon the django.contrib.admin, django.contrib.auth, django.contrib.contenttypes, and django.contrib.sites frameworks.


Download django-pendulum using one of the following methods:


Install django-pendulum using pip:

pip install -U django-pendulum


You can download the package from the CheeseShop or use:

easy_install django-pendulum

to download and install django-pendulum.

Package Download

Download the latest .tar.gz file from the downloads section and extract it somewhere you’ll remember. Use python install to install it.

Checkout from Version Control

Clone django-pendulum using one of the official repositories:

hg clone
git clone
hg clone django-pendulum

Verifying Installation

The easiest way to ensure that you have successfully installed Pendulum is to execute a command such as:

python -c "import pendulum; print pendulum.get_version()"

If that displays the version of Pendulum that you tried to install, you’re good to roll. If you see something other than that, you probably need to check your PYTHONPATH environment variable.


First of all, you must add this project to your list of INSTALLED_APPS in


Run syncdb. This creates a few tables in your database that are necessary for operation.

Next, you should add an entry to your main file. For example:

from django.conf.urls.defaults import *

from django.contrib import admin

urlpatterns = patterns('',
    (r'^pendulum/', include('pendulum.urls')),

The next thing you will want to do is configure Pendulum for the active Django sites. Do this by going into the Django admin and clicking the “add” link next to Pendulum Configurations.

The first step in the configuration is to choose which site this particular configuration will apply to. The decision is easy if you only have one site :)

Next, you must choose what kind of “accounting period” you wish to use. If you want month-long periods, ensure the “Is monthly” check box is selected. Then enter the day of the month that the periods begin. Periods that begin on the first of the month will always range from midnight on the first of each month to 11:59:59 PM on the last day of each month. Periods that begin on the 16th of the month will range from midnight on the 16th of each month to 11:59:59 PM on the 15th of the following month. Be wise about choosing start days such as the 31st of the month–it’s not a wise choice no matter what situation you’re in.

Alternatively, you may choose fixed-length accounting periods. The installation date does not necessarily have to be the actual installation date. This field is used as a reference point for creating periods. For example, if you have 2-week long accounting periods that begin on Sundays and end two Saturdays later, you would select _any_ Sunday from any month from any year. Then you would enter 14 for the period length. Periods will automatically be constructed that will begin at midnight each Sunday and end at 11:59:59 PM two Saturdays in the future.

If you fail to configure Pendulum for a given site, you will likely receive HTTP 500 errors if you try to access Pendulum via the front-end.

Add Projects

Next, you should add at least one project to Pendulum. This can easily be accomplished via the Django admin. The same goes for activities, but these are not required.


Finally, be sure set people up with the appropriate permissions using Django’s Auth framework. The front end side of Pendulum respects these permissions. That means that if a user doesn’t have the permission to clock in, the will be presented with a login screen (even if they’re logged in already) when they try to clock in on the front end site. The same goes for other operations such as pausing/unpausing entries, updating entries, deleting entries, etc.

An easy way to assign the same Pendulum permissions to several users is to create a Group using the Auth framework. There is a custom command for creating a group with all of the permissions necessary for the front end, including the ability to:

  • add entries

  • update entries

  • delete entries

  • clock in

  • clock out

  • pause/unpause entries

To use this command, simply run python create_pendulum_group. You may run python help create_pendulum_group to learn about options for this command.

The Date Field

I’ve been hesitant to do anything to make the date/time fields more user-friendly when adding or updating entries. I don’t want to tie anyone down to my particular way of doing things. I personally prefer jQuery for this sort of thing, but I do realize that jQuery disgusts many other people out there. Therefore, the first versions of the application didn’t come with anything to make those fields easier to use and understand.

However, that seems to be the most common complaint amongst those who have played with the application–the lack of user-friendly date pickers. As such, I have added some jQuery-based utilities to make choosing a date easier and more intuitive.

By default, the application will expect to find the appropriate files in a directory called pendulum within your media directory. All you should need to do is copy or symlink the media folder from the Pendulum application directory. If you copy the media folder, rename it to pendulum. If you create a symlink to Pendulum’s media folder, make sure the symlink is called pendulum. This directory should hold all of the necessary files to make the date picker work.

In your add_update_entry.html template (if you override the default ones), make sure you have a code block such as:

{% block extra-head %}
{{ }}
<script type="text/javascript">
$(document).ready(function () {
            dateFormat: $.datepicker.W3C,
            showOn: 'both',
            buttonImage: '{{ MEDIA_URL }}pendulum/img/calendar.png',
            buttonImageOnly: true
{% endblock %}

This is just jQuery’s way of attaching the date picker to the appropriate fields.

Customizing The Date Picker

I tried to put some utilities in the application to allow you to change the date picker that is used with ease. There is a variable that you can define in your file to override the default date picker: PENDULUM_DATE_MEDIA. If you simply want to change the styling CSS, for example, you could use this variable. The default value is:

    'js': (settings.MEDIA_URL + 'pendulum/js/jquery.js',
            settings.MEDIA_URL + 'pendulum/js/jquery.ui.js'),
    'css': {
        'all': (settings.MEDIA_URL + 'pendulum/css/jquery-ui.css',)

You can see that it is a dictionary with two keys: js and css. The values of these two items conform to the concepts outlined in Django’s documentation. Changing the values within PENDULUM_DATE_MEDIA should permit you to completely remove or replace the date picker as you desire.

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