Tutorial wishlist

Hey folks!

I’m supposed to be figuring out some tutorials, but it’s hard to know what to prioritise and how much needs to be shown. If you remember using Beeminder for the first time, what did you most need to know? What were you confused about doing?

Items on my list so far:

  • How to sign up
  • How to create a simple do-more goal
  • How to create a goal with a non-daily rate
  • Walkthrough of a goal page and how to find everything
  • Creating a goal with IFTTT
  • Changing reminders and deadlines
  • Setting breaks and archiving
  • Ratchets

Anything you’d add? Anything you’d take away or at least put further down the priority list?


I’d like to see “how to derail”!


Definately everything how have to be explained in a ELI5 version, especially if you consider non-native English speakers (even though I am conscious that most people that will end up using Beeminder speak English either because they are native / tech oriented).

On topics: a “Beeminder jargon words”.

It’s literally a screen recording with me narrating what I’m doing, so it should be easy to follow along! :slight_smile:

I’m not sure how to do a tutorial of the “jargon words” which wouldn’t require me just recording a video of myself, which I’m not very into. Did you have any specific ideas about how you’d like to see that done, and what sort of words you’d like us to include?

Agreeing with @marcmarti on this one. I remember when I first started all the different settings and jargon being very intimidating. It was less about “how do I do X” and more about “what are all these settings and words I’m lost.” Having some simple tutorials like “how to make a simple do-more goal” might help with that because they’d help new users learn the bare minimum without getting overwhelmed with everything else they don’t understand.

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I think the walkthrough of the goal page should be a pretty good opportunity for that!

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I was just about to make a post on how do-less tasks could use a little more documentation - for instance, what happens when you derail?

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Hmm, what do you mean by “what happens”? Is there something specific about do-less goal derailments that you don’t understand? I can’t immediately think of any major differences!

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For a do more goal, derailment means by default you get a 7 day break where you can relax from doing the thing. For a do less goal, iirc there’s a 7 day flat spot, correct? But if I keep adding data I would assume it would hit the red. Are you supposed to stop adding data, or does it work in some other way I’m not understanding?

Oh, wait - does it add 7 days of buffer? That would be represented by a vertical jump up in the line? I had been thinking in terms of do-more goals where the x-axis slides. Or is the latter how it works?

Haven’t derailed on a do-less yet. But all in all, would appreciate the tutorial elaboration!


Woo-hoo! Speaking of jargon, I still update https://blog.beeminder.com/glossary/ when I notice words we haven’t defined (and, sometimes, mercifully, jargon we’ve retired). If you find something not listed there, I’d be grateful to have it pointed out!

I keep meaning to come back and answer this, sorry! Thanks for talking us through this – interesting! So, it behaves like a do-more goal in spirit rather than in exact execution, i.e. it gives you buffer (however much you specified in your days of mercy setting, just like with a do-more goal) so you won’t derail again immediately. Putting in a flat spot on a do-less goal would make it more difficult, so as far as I know that’s never been the case – as you suspected, there’s a vertical jump up in the line before it continues at the normal rate.