Curious, why do I need to convert a goal to custom to make it integery?


Most of my goals are integery, so I really appreciate that I can just check a checkbox and let Beeminder know not to confuse me by requesting “0.14 GitHub commits” – but I always forget that I have go all the way down to the “custom goals” section to make the switch.

This one feels different from the other custom goal settings, because it feels cosmetic and pretty basic. Do I just feel that way because I use it so much? It feels like this is a checkbox that belongs right under the “show data in HH:MM format” checkbox in the settings.

I guess right now integery goals are only available for Bee Plus and above; “easier gate-keeping” is a sensible reason to cordon integeriness away. But is making a goal integery really much more complicated, either for users or for the technical backend, than displaying in HH:MM format…?


this is a really great point! imo, making it not integery is often 100x more complicated to people — i’ve talked to users who are incredibly confused by beeminder telling them to do 0.32 workouts. not to mention how it might invite weaseling…

i’ve even wondered if it should just bee a part of every goal creation: ask “does a fractional $unit make sense for this goal?” (e.g. “can you do 1.5 runs?”) and use that answer to set integery at creation. but that is a whole other can of design worms.


Rather than asking a technical-sounding question, maybe we could get people to select between ‘counting’ and ‘measuring’.

One design challenge will be mixing timey-wimey goals into that somehow.


Philip, this might be a relatively deep insight. “Are you counting,
timing, or measuring?” and when they pick one, it has examples like “number
of blog posts published” “time spent on Facebook” or “your weight”.

A question I ask when people ask for help with their goals is “does it make
sense to do 1/2 of a unit?”


Agreed about the example statements as you change your selection.

Sadly, I think ‘timing’ doesn’t quite fit because I don’t think of myself as timing, say, hours of work in the same way as I might think of timing minutes of listening to French.

But we’re on the right track!

PS: relatively deep insights is what I do for a living. :blush: