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Full Version: Rationality vs irrationality and how to improve focus me
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The situtation:

I make a plan to block the internet after 6 pm.  Of course, I need active protection and inactive protection.  Let's consider three scenarios.


It is the morning and I would like to modify the plan.  Here, I am begin very rational.  I might know ahead of time that I will need more time to do a task on the internet.  I am not trying to surf on mindless sites.  
It is 5:50 pm and I would like to modify the plan.  Here, I am being irrational.  We are close the period where I should be doing other tasks. I just want to surf on the internet and prolong the period, instead of doing housechores and sleep
It is past 6 pm, and I would like to modify the plan.  Here, I am probably being irrational.  We are IN the period where I should be doing other tasks, and go to sleep afterwards.

Remember that the closer, in term of time, we are to a reward stimulus we are, the more irrational we are.  We think with high rationality only when we are making decision about the future.  If offered the choice between 10 $ now and 20 $ tomorrow, we might take 10 $ now.  But if offered the choice between 10 $ in a week and 20 $ in 8 days, we will take the 20 $.

Let us consider how I can use focus me to make a plan.

Case 1)  High active protection, high inactive protection.

The problem, the plan is hard to modify in the morning when I am rational, but also hard to modify when I am irrational.  So, it is bad at 7 am, but good at 5h50 at pm. and at 6h pm.  The end result, I will not surf on the internet at night, but won't be able to modify the plan in the morning without much effort, even if I really knew in the morning I needed the computer up to 7pm.

Case 2) High active protection, low inactive protection.

In the morning, I will be able to modify the plan and act rationally.  
At 5h50, unfortunately, I risk modifying the plan.
At 6h, well the plan is already broken.

The solution:

The time to have high protection is not when the plan is active or not active.  This is because the time to have high protection is when we are irrational, and the time to have low protection is when we are rational. The closer to a plan being active, the more irrational we are. Focus me should be modified to reflect that.

There are several ways of doing so.  We could brainstorm about them.  

For now, I will give a few solutions:

1) Have a complete separate schedule for plan protection.  This would be the best, it gives the most options.
2) Allow the active protection to extend a set time before the plan is in action.  To give an example, I have no internet after 6 pm as a plan.  But the protection becomes active at 4pm.
3) A user suggested to also allow quick block (for a block of time ) to also have an added duration of time before the plan start. Example, it is 4pm, I want to block the internet for two hours, but only in two hours.  I start the plan now, a quick block, with a two hours delay.  But the protection for the plan starts NOW!It is much easier to say, I will block the internet in an hour, than I will block it now.
Thanks for the detailed suggestion PRR! This is an interested read! I have notified our devs about it. Smile