Survey for Master's Thesis

Hi everyone,

I’m new here, so I’ll give a brief introduction to myself first. My name is Tue Dommergaard and I’m studying Digital Design at Aarhus University (Denmark). I’m currently about to get my master’s degree in IT, but first I have to write and submit my master’s thesis in february.

To quote myself from my survey: “My interest is finding out what happens when you track your everyday activities, especially when it comes to exercising. Some people like to use the phrase: “Life is a game!”, but is that becoming a reality? Are we putting up unnessecary rules for ourselves by tracking and monitoring our every move? Are our lives becoming more like videogames - with rules, goals, boundaries and an ultimately competitive nature with self-tracking being the pivot point of our lives?”

I have been reading a lot of theory about videogames and been game designer on a couple of games myself - so my main interest is to look at have self-tracking and videogames might/might not have similarities.

I’m currently tracking my steps, km’s walked and sleep cycle using Fitbit Flex, my diet using MyFitnessPal, my workouts with Fitocracy and my mood with mappiness. So far it’s been a lot of fun and also a learning experience.

I reading a lot of stuff about the subject at the moment and can’t wait to go more into it - very excited.

It would help me a lot if you would take a few minutes to fill out a survey I made.

I will be reading a lot of stuff from the forum the next couple of months and look forward to learn more about self-tracking and the community in general! :slight_smile:

Thank you for taking the time! Can’t wait to read your answers! :slight_smile:

What have you learned?

The “learning experience”-part is not only about what I have logged through my tracking, but also (mainly) about what I have been reading about the subject. Tracking-wise I have only got data from 11 days so far, so that can’t really give me a precise pattern of my daily routines.

Nevertheless, I have tracked workouts and food in the past and I have learned a lot about my body - what works and what doesn’t. I can see a clear progression in my workouts (strenght-wise) and can see how my diet affects this (which should be obvious). I know what to eat before and after my training - and during the day - to have the right amount of energy throughout the day. By tracking my workouts and diets I have gained a desired amount og mass over the past couple of years. Tracking my weight on a daily basis and looking at how much bodyfat I have, also alters the way I train and eat.

Tracking my steps has also been an eye-opener. Just being conscious about about what 10.000 steps actually means. Taking the stairs, walking home from school and the whole competitive nature I have with some of my fellow students (who can reach the highest number of steps). Sharing kcal-intake with MyFitnessPal and watching what other friends eat as well.

The mood-tracking (in mappiness anyway) is just a gimmick to me and I don’t see that as valid data. It sends push-notifications three time a day and sometimes it annoys me, which alters my logging/mood.

What have I learned?! I’m getting more conscious about my body and feel like I’m taking control of life - health-wise anyway! At the same time, I can feel IT taking over my life a little bit, but I want to get a lot more data before concluding anything. This is of course subjective.

Just filled it. Please do share your results back to us! :slight_smile:
I’m also just starting a Masters degree project around this subject (also a part of a Masters in IT).

Thank you. I’ve got a lot of good responses so far, but it will take me quite some time to get a good overview! :slight_smile: I will share the outcome with all of you when I’m done with it - hopefully within the next couple of weeks! :slight_smile:

I would love to hear what you have to say about the topic! :slight_smile: