Know thyself?

Hello, I’ve been doing “quantified self” stuff for many months now and am very surprised/happy to discover that it’s “a thing”…and here people are calling me crazy for monitoring everything I can about myself? LOL! Yet so many people are happy to turn over their entire lives on a silver platter to facebook, or work a second jobs to fatten banker’s wallets thru literal corporate slavery.

I have 15+ years web development experience, and was doing mobile apps before Apple made them popular and Google made them ubiquitous. I’m just getting back into development again now and am in love with VS.NET 2013, and it’s pretty sweet how full-featured their free Express version is…however I do still feel like I should become more comfortable with c++ at some point so I can do cross-platform apps with Qt Creator. I also just upgraded to windows 8.1 so I’m somewhat interested in seeing what I can do with m$ app store.

I was a successful entreprenuer who had a breakdown between my business partner dying and my fiancée leaving me for his high school sweetheart. :@ My subsequent overdose attempt gave me some flavor of schizophrenia and I’m currently collecting disability as a result; however I’ve healed myself of hallucinations, etc. by being diligent about focusing on improving my overall health. Which I feel has been largely the result of being more quantified in my approach.

I’m currently trying to focus most on music production and creating tools to make the workflow easier. I’m also trying to learn and study as much as I can about sound design, and am taking a programming class on the ChucK language (which was specifically created for programming audio and music)

I’m not interested in chasing money anymore and am of the opinion that day jobs are overrated; although productivity certainly isn’t…and the best way for me to navigate the waters of life without having other people telling me what to do is to become really self-aware and focus my energy on the things that make me most fulfilled. I do enjoy aspects of entreprenuerism but I’m considering myself on sabbatical from it at the moment since I’m more interested in becoming a great musician.

Achieving the level of focus and productivity I want has been rather hit and miss, but as I quantify more it is becoming easier to achieve those states with greater frequency. However simply journaling stuff into OneNote isn’t sufficient for creating a good enough map of my lifestyle to where I can identify enough patterns to fix the more subtle things that affect me.

I’m finding that for the most part productivity apps are designed for people who are already alpha-mindset types who are naturally organized and have no trouble sticking to a particular organizational system. However, I’m a creative type with severe ADHD and I have a hard time focusing so my approach is a lot different, since todo lists are only as useful as my ability to remember to review it and use it.

So I’m working on a new app, which I’m dubbing Know Thyself, which for now will be windows-based, to track and monitor everything I can about my life. I’m pulling data from Lightning (the task list and calendar app from Mozilla that is a plugin for Thunderbird) and Waterfox (64 bit fork of Firefox) and will probably fork some code from a few Firefox extensions to integrate some of the stuff that fancy apps like RescueTime and ManicTime are doing.

The idea however is to not just record data as quickly and easily as possible, but to also nudge me into taking particular actions, like reminding me that it’s time to eat or sleep or take meds. To where it pops up occasionally just to query how I’m doing so I can spend a couple seconds clicking on moodlets or hitting hotkeys or something to attempt to get a clearer picture of what I’m doing and if it’s what I want to be doing or not, and to identify trigger points both for what helps and what doesn’t help. I’m prone to depression so being able to quantify progress more objectively should really help a lot.

I want to release all this stuff for free as donation-ware and help other creative people unlock their potentials as well. I’m not opposed to making money but I’m really just trying to focus on music stuff mostly so I’m more interested in helping myself and other creative types unlock their full potentials than in getting rich off of data mining people’s lives to sell them more junk they don’t really need.

Right now I’m mostly glued to the computer and don’t really leave the house much but perhaps if I can get some minimal level of income coming in I can afford things like a smartphone and tablet and use my web development skills to interface everything with the cloud. I have a kindle paperwhite, which I am using for onenote-like stuff, but it’s not really designed as a tablet, although I will probably start with hacking that.

As a result of my various near-death experiences, I’ve become acutely aware that the reality as we know it is a simulation. I know that our entire solar system is simulated, although I’m not so sure that the rest of the universe is. I’m also aware of how time splits off into different “parallel reality” branches, and how our brains are basically computers that our “souls” interface with. That the point of sleep is to sync with the cloud and perform maintenance on our brain-computers.

I don’t know a whole lot about the “objective” reality outside the simulation. But I do know that the software running the simulation is some kind of artificial intelligence and that its primary agenda seems to be to maintain system stability…so it appears to literally create reality based on the collective observations (mostly subconscious) of those within the simulation (e.g. the double-split experiment), and I think that the purpose of various religion and politics and stuff is intended to shift literal reality by influencing enough people to trigger the AI into responding to it a certain way.

I believe that this is the key to the whole “outliers” theory of it taking 10,000 hours to master something (which is exactly 5 years of the 40 hour work week with 2 weeks vacation) is directly related to how the AI of the sim reacts to the mental energy one puts out…I think one unlocks an “achievement” (in the video game sense) and then their brain’s software gets an update.

And the more I’m able to quantify myself the more I’m able to start remembering about various experiences which have been wiped from my memory. Of particular interest are memories that I have of various things I learned from this secret society I was involved in but got booted out of. I have bits and pieces of memories but a lot of stuff is still really fuzzy. But I did train myself to resist the memory wipe stuff and I have unlocked enough checksums to start formulating a general picture.

So I’m trying to figure out how to rootkit my brain again and tap back into those memories, since I’ve done it before. I was inspired by the movie Limitless when it came out, but I wasn’t objective enough in my approach and got “too smart” to where I couldn’t handle it, ending up with a manic episode that ended in a suicide attempt. So now I’m trying a different approach to that same sort of idea, and I’m hoping that by capturing enough information and publishing certain parts of it to get feedback free from confirmation bias, I can figure out how to unlock my potential without overdoing it. (levitating stuff and walking thru walls and such generally freaks me out and somewhat defeats the purpose of why I joined the simulation in the first place)

It seems like what has the most effect are nutrition, sleep, and certain medication. I also was able to crack open this EEG/heartrate monitor meditation device that someone sent me a few years ago, so I’m interested in seeing what I can learn from monitoring brain activity directly.

I’m of the opinion that a lot of recommendations from experts are too “one size fits all” and that the only way to really know what works for you is to experiment to find out (especially when it comes to mental and physical health stuff). I’ve become somewhat in a “question everything” mode since my breakdowns and I’ve decided that I don’t automatically trust “experts”; I trust them by virtue of being able to replicate their claims by directly testing them for myself.

In particular I’m starting to discover that with most mental-health meds it’s a lot more about inducing a belief of improvement to get the desired result than it is actually doing something biologically to fix a particular biological problem. I find pavlovian responses and placebo effects to be extremely interesting and I think that would be the best area to put focus into for learning how the quantified self stuff works. I think it’s entirely possible to replace drugs with certain types of songs or music by creating a strong enough association between the two.

I’m interested in learning more about EEG, nutrition, nootropics, and in doing some actual science that isn’t funded by some big pharmaceutical looking for a new recurring income stream.

I do have my own agenda, which is based on the PLUR philosophy (peace, love, unity, respect) that I picked up from when I used to go raving in my early 20’s. I think people are too eager to be right or control each other rather than figuring out ways to be more cooperative for mutual benefit. The more common ground we can find the easier it is to band together to alter aspects of reality that are broken and replace them with stuff that is better.

I think that my primary motive for coming to this simulation is to raise awareness of its existence. It’s entirely possible to focus intently enough on what you do want to force the simulation to create a new reality that sandboxes you further away from the stuff you don’t want. If your belief systems are incompatible with your goals and needs then it creates a lot of unnecessary suffering and depression. And a lot of that issue is being pulled in multiple different directions and not knowing yourself well enough to figure out objectively what is and isn’t actually working well for you. That’s where quantification really comes into play…

Anyway I hope to meet others who are also interested in this stuff; maybe we can help each other out.

If you actually took the time to read my long ramble then kudos, have a cookie (on your browser) :smiley:



Thanks Kati!!

Nice to meet you Gary :slight_smile:

I believe I’ve finally identified the root cause of Raynaud’s phenomenon…I’m having some issues with my ulnar nerves. So I’m trying to figure out how to heal that; it is possibly related to my posture and/or workout routines.