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The pomodoro technique is a time management method developed by francesco cirillo in the late 1980s. the technique uses a timer to break down work into intervals traditionally 25 minutes in length, separated by short breaks. these intervals are known as "pomodori", the plural of the italian word for "tomato". the method is based on the idea that frequent breaks can improve mental agility. closely related to concepts such as timeboxing and iterative and incremental development used in software design, the method has been adopted in pair programming contexts.