Investigating the quantified self through tracking and visualizing habits.
I wanted to investigate the idea of quantifying myself by recording and analyzing my habits. I don't think a person can be broken down into mere numbers (there are more nuances than that), but I wanted to challenge my understanding of humanity either way. This is a personal project of mine, as well as a technical exercise to build up my data visualization and analysis skills.
For 2018, I collected and tracked my own habits to create and analyze my own data. Each month focused on a different theme or habit, as well as different methods to collect data.
NOTE: while the goal was to collect and visualize data for the whole year, I only collected data for 12 months but failed to analyze past January - April. In an ideal world, I'd like to redo this project and see it through, but I highly doubt I will have time to go back and finish the analysis from May - December.
I started with something small. As tame as it may sound, prior to 2018, I barely drank caffeinated beverages. I had spent my winter 2017 in Singapore, where I began to drink daily coffees, and I wanted to see if I could continue this habit into January as well.
In February, I tracked my eating habits. The visualization below illustrates the food groups (plus caffeine) that I consumed. I annotated the foods I ate for the month in an Excel sheet, and cleaned the data accordingly to derive sets of analyses from it. I chose to focus on varieties, not quantity of food eaten (knowing myself, that could have led to unhealthy dietary restriction).
For March, I tracked the outfits I wore. I took an "Outfit of the Day" photo every day, and then quantified and analyzed them according to article of clothing, brands worn, and tried to extrapolate trends from my daily aesthetic.
April was a month of interactions. I looked towards the people I spoke to; my cue for this month was based on verbal communication after speaking to a friend, and him suggesting that I focus on something that "speaks about how I interact with others". It was a refreshing twist to record these because my first three months were solely about my own habits.