Beeminding wake-up calls

Hi – first time poster here but I’ve been using Beeminder for a while. I’ve got a couple half-formed ideas and hoping for some feedback/advice.

The first an automatic wake-up call service that makes you answer a few minutes’ worth of math problems (by keying in the answers) to wake yourself up. It’s automatically connected to beeminder, so you get a tick for the day if you answer and complete the sequence. No snooze or any other features, except maybe varying the number of problems. I’m envisioning something like the Math Workout mobile app that asks you relatively simple problems, but a lot of them. I would think no penalty for wrong answers, you just have to get a certain number right for it to “count.”

There are a million auto wake-up call services and I found at least one that already does this, but it’s just one problem and way too easy. There are also various types of puzzle or “challenge” alarm clocks. But I haven’t seen anything quite like this.

My other idea is to hire a human wake-up caller who has my beeminder password and updates all my goals for me. The conversation to make sure I’m awake is asking about the previous day’s values for all my goals. “Did you work out? Did you have any drinks? How many?” etc.

This would solve two problems – the wake up one and the problem of slacking on keeping my beeminder data up to date. And I have always found the human element is a huge advantage in motivation – I don’t acclimate to it the way I do with even the most clever automated system.

Has anyone done anything like either of these? In the second case, can anyone recommend how you’d go about it? I want it to be: 7 days/week at the same time every day, so probably has to be a service, not a single virtual assistant (but most services like asksunday et al are more task oriented and not “do the same little thing every day” right?) Also quite early EST so probably not someone based in the US.

Any thoughts/feedback much appreciated!

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For android there is like a billion math alarm clocks, I think “math alarm clock” allows you to set both difficulty and number of questions.

That said sleep as android allows you to print a QR code, stick it wherever you want (e.g in your bathroom) and that is the only thing that will turn the alarm of.

If you really want a human I suggest posting on fiver or task bunny. EST is behind the rest of the world, so even quite early (say 5 am) is pretty reasonable in GMT. You can probably get a cheaper indian (and the timezones are even better 5am est is 6:30 pm in India) but I wouldn’t know where to look.

If you just want the call feature and can do without a human try Twillio. It allows you to programmically call phones and you can code it to respond to button presses (press 1 to, press 2 to, …).

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Well, I guess part of what I’m looking for is something that’s auto-beemindable – are there any alarm clock apps like that? I.e. if I just physically turn off the phone or don’t answer the call, it’s instantly recorded as a miss for that day, and if I complete the sequence of required actions (whatever they are) then it’s instantly a hit.

Scanning a QR code isn’t enough of a challenge either, I think it needs to be at least a few minutes of uninterrupted mental work. I will check out Math alarm clock and Twilio, thanks for the suggestions…


Love this thread! Just a reminder that anything you find that’s IFTTT or Zapier compatible will work for auto-beeminding. Our IFTTT channel isn’t official yet but it’s working beautifully in beta and we can point anyone interested to it.

PS: Wanted to also mention this clever and kind of hilarious idea:

Sleep as Android has Beeminder integration, and you can set math questions to turn off the alarm.

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Yes but it looks like the Beeminder integration is for how many hours you sleep each night, not whether you got up with the alarm, right?

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That’s true, but it might not be too hard for us to add this. (I mean, realistically it will be a while, but we’ll be faster if more of you say you want this!)