Why 74% of smartphone apps are dropped by the 10th use

“If you build it, they will come.”  That seems to be the mantra of the tech startups that are churning out health tracking apps for our phones. But aside from the worried well of the Quantified Self movement, will Real Live Patients actually use these apps to improve health outcomes? That’s what Consumer Health Information Corporation (CHIC) wanted to find out when they surveyed about 400 smartphone owners to evaluate the likelihood of patient adherence.*

What we know so far is that we tend to exhibit a bit of a kid-in-a-candy-store initial infatuation with new and sparkly things.  Continue reading

“Fewer numbers, more life experiences”


“I’ve been putting in the effort not to be absorbed by things that don’t improve my daily happiness.”

Kate’s attitude may not make any sense to the self-absorbed who genuinely believe in “self-knowledge through numbers”, as the folks in the Quantified Self movement do.

But after spending two years tracking every single daily calorie and another year weighing herself every day, the author of This Is Not A Diet, It’s my Life wrote in her blog post called Life After Numbers:

“It’s no secret I have changed my mind about some things.  I have moved away from numbers and data and onto a more holistic, experience-based approach.  Continue reading

Can self-tracking drive you crazy?

Information is power! 

You can’t control what you can’t measure!

Data = beautiful!

Such are the battle cries of the empowered self-tracker.

Far behind, bringing up the rear of the limping battalion in our technology-as-saviour ranks are many Real Live Patients and their physicians daring to pose a question that I like to ask of the devotees of the Quantified Self movement:

“But what are you actually going to DO with all your data once you have collected it all?”    Continue reading