To see ourselves as others see us

Self-tracking is about self knowledge. But what if the knowledge you want is contained in the minds of others? Here are two recent videos from the last QS Show&Tell that bear on this question.

 We unfortunately didn’t capture the lovely talk Joe Betts-LaCroix and Lisa Betts-LaCroix gave at the recent QS on self-tracking in a relationship, but the Q&A is here, and it includes some really thoughtful questions and discussion, including Joe’s description of his simple web interface to Google docs, Lisa’s description of her analog self-tracking method, and an intriguing mention of social tracking, following up a suggestion by Paul Sas. (See below)

In this next video, Paul Sas tells a hilarious anecdote about suddendly catching a glimpse of himself through the eyes of another person, which leads to his proposal for a “dynamical dinner party.” Within a few minutes after the talks ended, he had his volunteers.

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3 Responses to To see ourselves as others see us

  1. tilde says:

    there’s a man who is documenting all parts of his life. he recently posted an instructable that may be of interest to you in which he makes an office chair that senses when gas is passed. here’s the link:

  2. Alexandra Carmichael says:

    I live-tweeted parts of Lisa and Joe’s talk – go to and search #quantifiedself

  3. Faren says:

    Facebook is already doing something VERY similar to this, called “Compare People”
    At first I was a bit put off, the idea of rating people so callously seemed uncomfortable. But like any morbid curiosity, it sort of addicts you temporarily… in some ways we’d really rather NOT know what people think of us! But with the info there, part of you just has to see it! (Check it out, you’d be surprised who’s already rated you)…of course the “who” is anonymous.
    I really like Paul’s idea of the dynamic dinner, but I think candid impressions would be so much more valuable. The fact that everyone knows they’re being judged will put everyone into an ‘act.’ Afteral, nobody usually wants to be judged poorly…. even if everyone truly tried to be themselves, the mere fact of knowing you are being watched changes your behavior innately (even if not overt). I would be somewhat more interested in a similar event (dynamic dinner party) where half the people didn’t know they were being judged. Later they of course could chose to see or not to see the results. Not sure if there’s any legal implication in this, but I suspect the right to free speech is always valid.
    I’d like to hear how the dinner-wrap goes on QS, even if you’d rather not disclose personal details.. just an overall outcome of how it went down =) Thanks for introducing such interesting concepts, as always!

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