Why People Collect Data
August 2, 2010
Nathan Yau over at Flowing Data started a fascinating discussion last week. He asked his readers why they collect data about themselves, what they’ve learned from it, or why they don’t collect any data at all.
“I collect my blood glucose level every 5 minutes through a continuous glucose monitor stuck in my gut. I log carbs, protein and fat intake… I am a type 1 diabetic. All data I can collect, analyze and take action on improves my health and prolongs my life.
And it’s a huge pain in the ass.”
The question of why to measure yourself is a good one. With a strong enough reason, like love of data or a health condition, motivation for daily tracking remains high. Without a good reason, or when the reason you were tracking gets resolved in some way, life kicks back in and tracking can fall by the wayside until a new reason comes along.