I suggest you ...

"Weekend Off" Targets

It's already been brought up that an option to schedule flat or altered rate days would help with planning vacations and weekends off.

In the meantime, here's an idea:
- Give us an option in the "advanced" tab that allows us to specify something like "[ ] This is a weekday-only goal" OR
- This goal applies only on [ ] Mon, [ ] Tues, [ ] Wed......

- Then either:

a) have two sets of numbers that show our minimum to the bottom, centre, top of the road, and make the second set reflect... (below) OR
b) replace the current numbers to the bottom centre, top of the road with numbers that reflect...
...where I'll need to be today in order to be in a position to have the weekend off or the relevant days off. This wouldn't affect my road, so I could ignore it and push some of my work into what would otherwise be my days off without derailing, but this way it's clear to me exactly how much I need to get done today if I want that weekend off.

This should be a pretty simple thing to do technically, plus it will only add visual clutter to the graphs of those who want this kind of thing. We can do this ourselves, but with a number of goals that are weekday only, that can result in mental friction. I love (LOVE) having the ability to just glance at the top of my graph and see how much I have left to go, without having to keep track of anything anywhere else. It's allowed me to delete all of my other tracking systems except for my task list (...and I had a lot of them).

Just getting to a place where we have 2 safe days is fine, but it would be nice to smooth out how much I need to do ~today~ so that I'm at +2 by Friday night, rather than starting right away on Monday to think about being above the line. (As a tool for managing procrastination, though, having a second set of numbers would, I think, be more effective as it would help make it feel less like I'm mega-awesome if I'm "ahead" by a safe day on Thursday when I really needed to be ahead by 1.6 days... and so am actually behind by 0.6 days.)

The alternative is building up such a buffer that this wouldn't be an issue and I'd never have to think about getting ahead in time for the weekend... but if we were doing that in our lives for all of our goals, we probably wouldn't be here chatting. This would be a bit more of an "in your face" way of viewing what we need to get done if were going to have the weekend off.

Thoughts?

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    EssyEssy shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

    15 comments

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      • Sean FellowsSean Fellows commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Maybe, but that approach makes the solution incompatible with people that are hoping to get one-off vacations handled by this feature as well. In that model the weekend off is just a repeated 2-day vacation, but you could also specify a non-repeating vacation. And your first example of exercising is covered by 4 separate repeated 1-day vacations.

      • Christopher AllenChristopher Allen commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        It seems to me that the fully general solution to this problem would be able to specify a rate for each day of the week. Here are some use cases which would be immediately useful for me, but which are difficult to enforce properly at the moment:

        - Goals for exercising on Monday, Wednesday and Friday: a certain number of minutes or reps on those days; flat on other days.

        - Completing a certain number of hours (or pomodoros) of work on weekdays, but noting that I will allow myself to do less on Wednesdays when I teach a class in the evening (for which I need to allow for preparation and travel time)

        - A goal to complete post-class accounting and video-editing no later than Friday.

      • DonovanDonovan commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        More than weekday only goals, I want work-week only goals. I work as a freelancer and often bid on a project basis - which means that projects often expand to fill however much time I have. This has negative impacts on work-life balance. I want goals where the clock is only active M-F 9am-5pm. This means that I have to get the work done by the end of the work day (5pm) during the work-week. The benefit of that is I won't be tempted to let my freelance projects expand to fill my evenings and/or weekends - and because the work has to be done by the end of the work day, I won't waste time during the workday if I actually need to use that time to complete the project.

        I imagine it would work similarly to the way that Beeminder currently works - except the deadline would be 5pm and the weekends would be flat (even better if you could select arbitrary days of the week to pre-flatten).
        Cheers,

        Donovan

      • dreevesAdmindreeves (Cofounder, Beeminder) commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        @Chris, agreed! In the meantime you could cron something to run every Friday and Sunday that flattens and unflattens the road for the following weekend. We'd love to discuss that more -- support@beeminder.com -- so we can start thinking about how best to support that use case more conveniently. This is related to ongoing work on our Generalized Road Dial: http://expost.padm.us/dial .

      • Chris JonesChris Jones commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I came upon this problem and thought that I'd just turn to the API to solve it. I was quite surprised to find that there is no way to schedule breaks through the API. If this isn't going to be part of the UI, why not expose whatever method Beeminder is currently using for scheduling breaks to the API?

      • LarsLars commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        As a freelancer counting hours, this type of feature is important to me too. Due to time constraints with kids and such, I'm rarely able to sit at the client's office 7.5 hours every day, or even on average over a full week. My client doesn't necessarily mind so much unless on occasions where deadlines are involved, but I do as this has a direct effect on my paycheck. I'm allowed to work from home or come back in evenings, but this isn't something I'm too happy about doing, and so I'd like beeminder to help me.

        I typically want to set my self a goal of ca 38 hours per week (or really 7.5 hours * available days per week, such that occasional holidays are accounted for, and an easy way to "disable" sick days). I'm usually not interested in +time for a week to rollover to the next, since that is bonus/overtime paid, although I guess I could retrachet in those cases since it normally isn't predictable.

      • AmoraAmora commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I would love to be able to say which days a goal applies to. I have a goal of being to work on time, but it's not like I need to be on time on my days off.

      • dreevesAdmindreeves (Cofounder, Beeminder) commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Sam, well said! In the meantime I personally like the approach of making sure I get into the green by Friday so I can do nothing Saturday and Sunday. That's like a commitment device within a commitment device, since if I don't make it into the green then I'll have to put in some weekend hours.

        But we do want to solve this and make it convenient to always have flat weekends.

      • Sam SSam S commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        It gets tiresome to have to ensure that I have breaks manually entered for every one of the 50 some weekends a year, or otherwise have to make not-accidentally-screwing-up-beeminder my weekend project.

        This could become a deal-breaker for me as the novelty of beeminder wears off and I finally start to feel that these irritations and the stress they produce outweighs the utility of having some monetary accountability for my true goal of work productivity.

      • Jurgen EngelboschJurgen Engelbosch commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I also like this idea. Like when you want to try to stop drinking during weekdays but still want to be able to drink with buddies on the weekends. I used to have a similar rule and just because I got those ('cheat') days off, I was able to stick with it. Same thing with quit smoking but people actually want to downgrade to being a social smoker during weekends instead of trying to quit completely.

      • Jurgen EngelboschJurgen Engelbosch commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I also like this idea. Like when you want to try to stop drinking during weekdays but still want to be able to drink with buddies on the weekends. I used to have a similar rule and just because I got those ('cheat') days off, I was able to stick with it. Same thing with quit smoking but people actually want to downgrade to being a social smoker during weekends instead of trying to quit completely.

      • Vilhelm SjobergVilhelm Sjoberg commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I also want weekday-only goals, although the way I imagined it is simpler that what's described above: make the target curve flat on weekends, just like with the "take a break" feature. (Every weekend is a vacation!) The goal setup should take this into account, e.g. if I create a new goal with a weekly rate of 10 units/week and weekdays-only, then the curve should increase 2 units every weekday.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        yep totally. I don't like having to build a buffer that gets eaten every weekend. It feels like my weekends off are hurting me. I want guilt free days off. And it makes the view from Monday look more daunting.

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