The Data-Driven Life

Gary Wolf (of The Quantified Self blog) wrote an article for The New York Times magazine last month about how people are introducing quantification into their personal lives.  I have talked about this practice before.

You can find the article here.

It has great examples of how people have been changed when they put numbers on different aspects of their life.  Does coffee give you more focus?  Do you really spend an hour a day cleaning up after someone? All kinds of questions can be answered when your behavior is quantified.

Wolf also talks about the technology that has enabled us to become quantifiable selves.  Mobile phones, social media, etc.  have setup an environment where more and more people are becoming more comfortable tracking everything they do (and publicly sharing it, too).

All throughout the article, Gary Wolf hints at (but does not explicitly state) that one of the fundamental benefits of quantifying your behavior is forcing an objective perspective on your life.  That objectivity helps you break out of patterns of thought, and bring you to a better understanding of yourself.

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