Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Personal Hourglass of Time

"But at my back, I always hear Time's winged chariot hurrying near;"
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Like most people I am a talented and successful procrastinator. Whenever I need to prod myself into gear however I recall the above quote from Andrew Marvell which gets me moving (but also tends to give me the willies, to tell the truth).

There are numerous "How Long Will You Live" websites on the Internet [links] which have you enter your particulars; such as how long did your grandparents live?, do you smoke? and so on. They then use actuarial tables to calculate a "best guess" as to how long you have left on this orb.

I propose taking this data to create a small hourglass icon permanently displayed on a corner of your computer's desktop and smartphone showing the relative amount of sand in the top and the bottom of your own personal hourglass. It would show the diminishing number of days you have left as a mouseover popup. It could be 'sponsored by' various health foods or fitness clubs or life insurance companies and be hotlinked to their websites.

I'm not sure if I'd personally like to have this or not but it might cut down the amount of time I fritter away (not counting HB time of course which is filed under "self-improvement").

BTW, this idea has more gravitas if the "Hourglass of Time" part is read in an echo-ey "Voice of God" type tone. The tone you choose to read the "Personal" part of the title is, well, personal.

AusCan531, Nov 14 2011

Death Forecast http://www.deathforecast.com/
[AusCan531, Nov 14 2011]

Wharton's Mortality Calculator http://gosset.whart.../perl/CalcForm.html
[AusCan531, Nov 14 2011]

Voice of God To-Do List Voice_20of_20God_20To-Do_20List
Bundled together in the Voice of God Personal Reminder Software Suite [swimswim, Nov 14 2011]


       //Whenever I need to prod myself into gear however I recall the above quote from Andrew Marvell which gets me moving// In which case, surely it would be better to have a winged chariot making hurrying- near noises?
MaxwellBuchanan, Nov 14 2011

       What if you outlive the hourglass? Can one get a refill?
xandram, Nov 14 2011

       //Can one get a refill?//   

       Just double-click to turn it over.
swimswim, Nov 14 2011

       i'd want it to be more like a 10-year glass. start it when i'm 30. flip when i'm 40. then at 50. These are milestones of life.
AutoMcDonough, Nov 14 2011

       //milestones of life// More cheaply and accurately accomplished by noting the location of new hair growth.
FlyingToaster, Nov 14 2011

       More like "relocation" :(
AusCan531, Nov 14 2011

       //it would be better to have a winged chariot making hurrying- near noises?//   

       "Whoosh, whoosh, whoosh". Gaaah!! I can hear it now! Can't anyone else hear it? Anyone?
AusCan531, Nov 14 2011

       //flip when i'm 40. then at 50. These are milestones of life.//   

       [AutoMcDonough] has a good suggestion. As this is just virtual sand it would be easy to have thin, differently-coloured layers delineating each decade.
AusCan531, Nov 15 2011

       //10-year glass// I thought the milestones of life were traditionally every 7 years. Resorting to multiples of 10 strikes me as lazy.
spidermother, Nov 15 2011

       As long as something strikes you I'm happy. (Custom sand colours and intervals available upon application and 75% deposit).
AusCan531, Nov 15 2011

       I had a similar idea. The program would only require 3 inputs: DOB; current date/time; and estimated data of death (DOD). The DOD would be generated offline: derived from as many questions the user is prepared to answer. Instead of an hourglass the icon would be a solid circle that has a growing dark sector that indicates time past. What this then allows is to draw a "century circle" which gives you a visualisation of the total time allotted.   

       The program should also treat the DOD as asymptote (because you wouldn't want a program to nocebo to death the users).   

       The last design touch I would apply is to have the "circle of life" pulse like a heartbeat.
Ray57, Nov 15 2011

       I dislike this - it would give you the impression and confidence that you have, say, 40 years left, when in fact you're going to be killed by a mad axeman tomorrow.
hippo, Nov 16 2011

       I doubt very much that anyone would seriously consider this app as some sort of ironclad guarantee that they have "X" number of years left. It is merely a little prod to your conciousness that your personal timeline isn't infinite and you should get on with whatever you want to do in life.   

       I must say I'm kind of surprised at (but not particularly worked up about) the 3 fishbones which showed up recently. I thought the idea was more of a "meh" type one which wouldn't engender much controversy one way or another. [hippo] at least gave a reason which I understand.   

       [Ray57]'s pulsing heartbeat bit is a nice touch and other than having a circle instead of an hourglass the two ideas are much the same. The DOD would be naturally asymptotic as people aged in any case. The chances of a 80 y.o. reaching 90 are better than that of a 50 y.o. which are better than the chances of a 5 y.o. and so on.   

       But sooner or later (and this is the point folks) we all run out of sand - so get on with what you want to do in life now.
AusCan531, Nov 16 2011

       And how will this accommodate the anti-procrastination needs of vampires and zombies?
swimswim, Nov 16 2011

       //And how will this accommodate the anti-procrastination needs of vampires and zombies? //   

       Why would beings with infinite time available have any issue with procrastination?
Twizz, Nov 17 2011

       The answer is very game theoretic, involving competition between immortal beings over a locally finite supply of mortal resources.
swimswim, Nov 17 2011

       //it looks like you have another day//   

       That is the beauty of the asymptotic DOD. It will always say you have at least a few more days and will only ever be wrong once.   

       //live every day as if it were your last//   

       Yep right on brother. Cuz some day you will be right.
AusCan531, Nov 18 2011


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