Quantified Self Intervention

Quantified Humanists Week 6


I recently became interested in screen usage of my phone and various apps while on a trip to Puerto Rico with a few friends. Suddenly being in beautiful weather by the beach made me more aware of how often I was still checking my phone along with various other friends on the trip. The group tried hard to limit our phone usage and enjoy the weather and each other's company. We often put all our phones in the middle of the table during meals.


This made me look into screen usage and tracking when I was back. I was curious how much time I spent on my phone and what apps I used the most. This is a screen shot of the Screen Time app on the iOS phone and my screen activity on Instagram. As this was a day after my trip, I spent a lot of time on Instagram and Google Photos.


I do not usually track my screen activity, but various other times that I have, this has looked different. I normally spend most of my time on Telegram because I use it for group messages and group projects. With Instagram, I usually use this to find new recipes, photo inspirations for school projects, new artists, etc.


Another interesting thing to track would be screen time and app usage depending on the day (weekend or weekday) and where you are (school, work, vacation, home). I think this could give you insight into your habits with technology in different places.





Self Intervention


I thought an interesting idea would be to have pop up notifications that were linked to a weather API. If you were on your phone and the weather was sunny and nice, you would get a notification like the one to the left, reminding you that you should take time to enjoy the nice weather.


Sometimes I think simple reminders can help you start to change old behaviors or form new habits if you yourself are also trying to adjust.


This was inspired by the nice weather I was in during my trip and how I didn't want to waste it on my phone the whole time I was there. I think a simple reminder like this would be helpful.









Visualizing Screen Time Data


I thought that the current interface for showing screen time usage was clunky and hard to discern what was what. I think the process of redesigning a simpler interface would be beneficial towards understanding one's phone usage better.


I attempted at a very rough draft. I am not a UX designer and this was only my second time using Sketch, so I know there is still a lot to be added and changed.


I broke down the interface into three sections. The top being your goal of limiting screen time. You would be able to set a limit for how much you allowed yourself and see how much you have used so far. The second graph breaks down your screen time between the different types of apps you use on your phone so you can get a better sense of how you use your time on your phone. The third graph displays your weekly screen usage so you can get a better sense of if you are increasing or decreasing usage as well as start to understand your weekly phone habits (maybe you use your phone too much during the weekend, rather than enjoying your time off).