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Matt Stratton
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I'm surprised you don't see the difference. Ever since using my rMBP, when I use my wife's MacBook (white early 2010) it feels like I have the wrong prescription in my contacts :)
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Ultimately, you are correct though - capturing the data is only useful if you can somehow analyze it and use it to make a change. For me, I capture my runs with RunKeeper because I am looking to improve my distance and my pace - so unlike your bike commute, it's a movement towards a goal. Another thing worth considering - I remember reading an article in WIRED about a year or so ago that discussed this very topic (mostly in the context of Nike+) and they found that people who measured and reported on their workouts stuck with them longer. Something about the act of quantifying the effort makes it more like a game, maybe (you alluded to this in your "achievement" comment) and encourages people to perform more. Sharing (via social media) can have a similar effect - as dumb as it sounds, when my runs post to Facebook and nobody comments on them, I feel bummed. But when of my friends comments on a run I did (heck, even them just "liking" it), it jazzes me up and when it's 5 am and I am trying to convince myself to do my run...I say to myself "but if I don't, Tom Walsh will know, and I'll let everyone down." No, my friends are not "counting" on me to do a 3 mile jog around my neighborhood...but psychologically, it has an effect. Something to consider.
Toggle Commented Aug 13, 2010 on Exploring the Quantified Self at Trapper Markelz
I understand the point of the data not changing, but for me (when I waa a bike commuter) I still recorded all of my data from my bike computer for the aggregate. It was less about the data for an individual ride, and more about the longer term trends. Like you said...what does it do to have two years worth of data on bike commuting, for example? Well, depending on how much information you record, it could tell you a lot about larger trends - when did you NOT ride, for example (cold days, certain months, certain days of the month, days of the week). How did your performance change over the course of the year (again, seasonal) and also within the course of the entire period (one assumes that over time, you become more efficient as a rider and your average speeds may change).
Toggle Commented Aug 13, 2010 on Exploring the Quantified Self at Trapper Markelz
This was awesome.
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Explosive amnesia, even?
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The forward is really funny though. If you happen to get your hands on the most recent reprinting of The Forever War (which is worth reading, since there's a whole section in the middle that was missing from the first printings), it's awesome. I'm about halfway through Old Man's War now. I'm really enjoying it.
Toggle Commented Nov 9, 2009 on Armor by John Steakley at Trapper Markelz
Hmm. I'm intrigued. As we've discussed before, I'm having a bit of a Haldeman renaissance (brought on by all of your blog reviews of his stuff), which meant I recently re-read The Forever War. John Scalzi wrote the forward, which was in the form of an letter to Haldeman "apologizing" for ripping him off (unintentionally) with Old Man's War. Which is my roundabout way of asking if you've read Old Man's War (I just started it last night).
Toggle Commented Nov 8, 2009 on Armor by John Steakley at Trapper Markelz