Bayesian Willpower

Thursday, April 8, 2021
By dreeves
Pr(workout | Beeminder) = Pr(Beeminder | workout) * Pr(workout) / Pr(Beeminder)

A couple weeks ago, Scott Alexander wrote “Toward a Bayesian Theory of Willpower”. This is my recap of the theory, my tentative verdict, and what I think it means for Beeminder and motivation hacking more generally. Let’s start with defining terms! Akrasia means failing to do something you rationally want to... »

Contra Positive Reinforcement: Why Beeminder Is A Glutton For Punishment

Friday, March 26, 2021
By dreeves
A bee holding a carrot (down) and a stick (up)

Previously on the Beeminder blog: debating negative vs positive reinforcement and, in case you care about using these psychology terms correctly, clarifying that »

Beemind What You Buy

Friday, March 12, 2021
By dreeves
Bee on a shopping spree

“It would be a good thing to buy books if one could also buy the time to read them; but one usually confuses the purchase of books with the acquisition of their contents.” — Arthur Schopenhauer, before Beeminder existed Are you about to buy something that requires ongoing time or energy? Some things don’t.... »

What Not To Beemind

Tuesday, March 2, 2021
By Chelsea Miller
The Beeminder logo crossed out

What appalling apostasy is this? It’s not like that! Beeminder just isn’t quite perfect for absolutely everything. It’s *practically* perfect for absolutely everything. Practically perfect for a surprising breadth of things? This post just happens to be about the exceptions. It’s a sequel to both... »

Do-Zero Goals Considered Harmful

Wednesday, February 17, 2021
By Chelsea Miller
A dead bee on a flat graph

Look what we found in the attic! Our original Support Czar, Chelsea — known for such classics as “Beemind Easy Things” and “ »

The Burgle Bug Fairness Principle

Wednesday, February 3, 2021
By dreeves
A burglar bee

Beeminder’s bug classification system is like so: Bitty Bugs are barely bothersome. Baneful Bugs make Beeminder blatantly wrong, but not in any breach-of-contract way, unlike… Bum-steer Bugs which may make you derail by leading you astray about... »