Talking Tech Friday – Disciplanner

Welcome back to the first Talking Tech Friday column of 2010!  I hope everyone had a nice holiday – I certainly did!  I’m also prepared to start the new year and new decade with some resolutions, so today I thought I’d review a tool to help you track those goals!

What is it?

Disciplanner is a long-term goal management and tracking system.  You can plan and track your goals, as well as track bad habits.  They call the goals “exercises” and tracking them “repetitions”, so it definitely has a work-out theme.

How does it work?

After registering (username, email, & password), you can start planning our your goal. Under the “Exercises” tab, you can specify your goal, mark it as active, decide whether it is public or private, check it as a negative (if you want to track a bad habit), and how many minutes you want to dedicate per day and days per week.  Positive goals means you’re trying to meet or exceed the number of minutes you dedicated, negative means you’re trying to stay under the minutes.  There is also some space to go into more detail about your goal, as well as assign tags (for example, maybe you want to set some goals at work, as well as some personal goals).

The minutes aspect is a little counter-intuitive.  Say you want to commit to something for 30 minutes a day, 4 days per week.  If you click on the minute calculator and plug that in, it will change your minutes to 18, which is the average if you spread that out to 7 days per week.  Personally, I’d like the minutes

There are also some premade (by Discplanner or other users) exercises that you can add to your own “Gym” if you like, such as these Pushups and Crunches or Digital Nature Photography.  You just click the “add” button to automatically add them to your own list and make any alterations, as well as comment on or rate the exercises you like.

Once you’ve set up your exercises – you can keep a progress log under the “Repetitions” tab.  You click on the appropriate exercise, then log how many minutes you spent on it that day.  You can change the date, so you can fill in the log in case you missed a day.

You can also set up milestones – for example, if your goal is improve your running, you can set up a milestone for every mile increase and set a date to achieve that milestone.  Or, if like me, your goal is to learn to cook really awesome egg breakfasts, you can set a milestone for different dishes (omelets in 2 weeks, frittatas in one month, etc.).  When you meet a milestone, you can mark it as complete.

For tracking purposes, you can view your history for a specified date range and even export it as a spreadsheet.  The statistics page is perhaps the most fun, as you can see pie charts and bar graphs of your progress, as well as a progress table that resets each week.

Disciplanner is still in the beta stage, so there will probably be improvements along the way.  They are also planning an iPhone app in the near future!

Possible Library Uses

I see this more as a personal goal tracking system, but it could definitely be used to track work goals, or time spent on a project.  Anything that makes us better people improves us as library employees, right?



~ by Anali on January 8, 2010.