Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Button Box

I've begun the collection of a variety of factors that chronicle my response time, how I feel, nutritional factors, exercise, stress at home and work, medications I take, APAP settings, sleep environment, blood pressure, Zeo sleep scores, etc.  To do this, I have created a "button box" that I can click an appropriate button and record these things.  It's not a real flexible application suitable for others, but it does the job OK for me.  I think I have most of the factors I would like to capture and I may add more as I go forward.  The most important is how I feel and so I have buttons for overall goodness (1-10), groggy, achy, headache, puffiness, arrhythmias.

When I click a button, depending on the nature of what I'm recording, different things happen.  For response time, I am asked when I woke up and how long it takes to set a time control is logged.  Then a "whack-a-mole" type of little game appears where I have to click on a image which then randomly moves to another position on the screen.  It moves 10 times.  The average time between the image appearing and when it gets clicked is recorded.  This actually seems to capture my hand-eye coordination skills fairly well. For exercise, it asks for the start time, duration and the average heart rate (a proxy for exertion).  For single dose things, like taking an Excedrin (aspirin / acetaminophen), it just records a "1" in the Excedrin variable.  Some factors ask for a judgment on a scale of 1-10.  All entries are time stamped so I can later compute their timing, inter-relationships through time, etc. If I look at them as being before a sleep they potentially could then be a causal factor, or perhaps look at them as coming after sleep, making them a potential a consequence of good or poor sleep.

What am I going to do with this data?  A lot!  That will be the fuel for a lot of future topics.

Greatest challenge: The discipline to use it.  When I do something, I need to click

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