Lose weight and search

January 16, 2007

I got the flu on Thursday and when I weighed myself I was down 5 lbs. Not bad! Though I don’t think I’m ready to adopt influenza as a lifestyle.

What, pray tell, could any of this have to do with search on 43 Things? Well for a long time, if you searched for “lose weight” on our site, you wouldn’t find the very popular goal until the second or third page of results. Thanks to something called ferret, Ivan was able to roll out a whole new search engine to 43 Things with very little effort. Now when you search for lose weight on 43 Things, guess what you get?

Hopefully you can meet your goal without succumbing to the flu virus. And thanks to the good folks behind ferret!

43T-shirts: the hidden store revealed!

January 10, 2007

A couple years ago I printed up some 43 Things t-shirts on a lark (figuratively speaking). It’s pretty much been a hidden store this whole time. However last week I ordered a good number of shirts (I believe I have 50+ in stock now). If you’re interested in getting a custom hand-screenprinted 43 Things t-shirt then head on over to the once hidden store and order a shirt for $12. Shipping is included and we accept Paypal. The shirts come in black or pink (oh the variety!). I’ve roughly calculated sizes, so measure thrice and order once.

I should warn you that although the shirts are honest and cool, there is no football field-size warehouse with supply chain management being fed by a ravenous group of merchandisers. The shirts are on the shelf in our server room. I package and ship them in the morning before the other Robots arrive. When we’re running low I walk down the street and order a couple dozen shirts from Brian at Torpedo. And there is no 43T logo on the shirt … just the simple individualist statement, “I am doing 43 Things.” (and you’d have it no other way!).

P.S. if you complete this goal be sure to check it off your list

Personal Challenges

January 8, 2007

We’re always looking for ways to better engage the software in your head that actually changes behavior rather than just gives you a new tool or feature. The influences of peer pressure, reputation, and other social contracts are a lot more powerful as motivators than sms reminders and blinking task bars.

Along these lines, as people are creating their goals and New Year’s Resolutions, we’ve added a simple feature called the Personal Challenge.

personal challenges

A personal challenge is like anything else on your list of 43 things that you want to do before you die, except you give yourself a deadline and consequences. This goal then jumps to the top of your list and is highlighted with the date and consequences there for everyone to see. You can’t remove it from your list anymore… you can either mark it as done, or give up on it. You have now become accountable… and a bit of your reputation is on the line.

Choose something that you really want to do because you can only have one personal challenge at a time. For more info on motivating yourself by creating public consequences for yourself and staking your reputation on the line, you can watch this talk I gave at Ignite Seattle a few weeks ago: How to use technology to get what you want.

Try out Personal Challenges by logging in, going to your profile page, and clicking on the link in the left column to “learn more” about the brand new personal challenge and see if it doesn’t change the way you think about your goals. No more dilly-dallying.

Site down Jan. 4 11am PST

January 4, 2007

We’re tweaking the database and the site has to be down for a few minutes. We’re hoping we’ll be up shortly. Thanks for your patience!

UPDATE: we’re back at 11:10 PST! Down about 10-15 minutes. Thanks folks.