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If you have to ask you probably don't want to know but, see, there's this
website called
Beeminder
which is a Quantified Self tool for the ironically hypermotivated to graph their
progress on things like how they spend their time and also make *really*
sure they actually make progress by literally agreeing to let Beeminder charge
them when they don't.
It's super motivating to certain lifehacking data nerd types.

And then there's this equally crazy tool, also by the folks beehind Beeminder, called TagTime which is really übernerds-only for now but the idea is you can randomly sample yourself to see where your time is going. (For many things RescueTime works beautifully and Beeminder has a nice normal-person-friendly RescueTime integration.) But for the doubly nerdy you can set up TagTime to automatically update a Beeminder graph and if you've done that you might find this tool useful.

The idea is that since TagTime randomly samples you, you can never be sure how
much time you're going to get credit for.
It works out exquisitely fairly in the long run but sometimes you have a
beemergency
and really need to get credit for another hour or so *by midnight*.
So that's what this tool is for.
It does the math on that
(involving the CDF of a gamma distribution, as it turns out)
to tell you how likely you are to get pinged
(to use TagTime's lingo)
enough times before midnight, if you stay focused.
The best part is how it updates live so you can watch your chances dwindle
away in real time if you're staring at this page instead of doing whatever it is
you're beeminding and tagtiming.

You might also find this static table handy. It gives the number of hours you should set aside for the given number of Emergency Hours (Emergency Pings) if you want to be pretty sure of getting at least that many pings. Specifically it shows the ~95% and ~98% confidence intervals. Which means there's a 2.5% or 1% chance of it taking more than the upper bound of the interval, respectively, and also a 2.5% or 1% chance of it taking less than the lower bound. For example, if you need 2 pings you can be 99% sure they'll happen within 5 hours.

Pings Needed | ~95% CI | ~98% CI |
---|---|---|

0h45m = 1p | 1m – 3h | 30s – 3.5h |

1h30m = 2p | 10m – 4h | 7m – 5h |

2h15m = 3p | 30m – 5.5h | 20m – 6h |

3h00m = 4p | 1h – 6.5h | 40m – 7.5h |

3h45m = 5p | 1h – 7.5h | 1h – 9h |

4h30m = 6p | 1.5h – 9h | 1.5h – 10h |

5h15m = 7p | 2h – 10h | 2h – 11h |

6h00m = 8p | 2.5h – 11h | 2h – 12h |

Source code: Glitch & GitHub Canonical URL: mind.tagti.me