Bethany Soule and Daniel Reeves on Stochastic Self-Sampling

From the New York QS Show&Tell group: Bethany Soule and Daniel Reeves talk about self-trickery that helped them get motivated to meet their long-term goals.

They each pledged $2,000 one summer – they would lose this money if they didn’t daily follow their “yellow brick road” targets for everything from pushups to desserts to spending time with kids. Watch their fascinating story below.

Daniel Reeves and Bethany Soule – Stochastic Self-Sampling from Steve Dean on Vimeo.

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9 Responses to Bethany Soule and Daniel Reeves on Stochastic Self-Sampling

  1. Michael Kim says:

    Thanks for sharing! I couldn’t make out their reference to “Timepie”? Is there a URL?

  2. Arnþór Snær says:

    There does not appear to be an url although it is listed here :
    It seems to be a Android app developed by Bethany so it should be listed at the market.

  3. Philip says:

    No link from Bethany’s site, but I found it here:

  4. Daniel Reeves says:

    Thanks everyone! Timepie is indeed probably the coolest part of this from a QS perspective. Thanks for digging up the link to Bethany’s Android app. Bethany and I have kind of concluded that it’s fundamentally too hard to use on a phone though [1]. The version we’ve been using continuously for 3 years is a collection of perl scripts that pops up an xterm to prompt you with tags. Mac and Unix only. So we’ve been wanting to put together something more polished before going public with it. But anyone who wants to try it in its current form (which is quite rock solid despite its primitiveness), we’ll be delighted to point you to the svn repository. Just let us know.
    [1] The difference between using timepie on a phone versus a computer is that in the latter case your attention is pretty much totally focused on the computer. So a pop-up that wants a couple tags is, once you’re used to it, no real distraction. Your train of thought is, in our experience, not derailed by that at all. On a phone, however, you’re mostly focused on the outside world and you don’t want your attention pulled periodically to the phone.

  5. Matthew Cornell says:

    A great experiment that combines:
    o incentives (don’t lose money)
    o accountability partners (help me not lose money; I’ll help you too)
    o commitment (put up money)
    A related practice I’m playing with for Think, Try, Learn is creating environments that facilitate reaching goals, i.e., building in “path of least resistance” structures. I’m curious if Bethany Soule or Daniel set up anything to help.
    Great stuff!

  6. We just renamed TimePie to TagTime and put it on github:


  7. Pingback: wanderingstan» Blog Archive » Self-Trickery for Good

  8. Pingback: Toolmaker Talk: Bethany Soule & Daniel Reeves (Beeminder) | Quantified Self

  9. Pingback: Quantified Self | Beeminder Blog

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