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Punisher - An alarm clock that ruins your life (play.google.com)
57 points by gedrap 1374 days ago | hide | past | web | 37 comments | favorite

I think I'll hold out for the wearable version that slashes my wrist automatically after hitting snooze more than 2 times.

You should totally ask Razer to implement that in their new Nabu.


I prefer Alarmy[1]. It requires you to take a picture of a specific place to stop the alarm. I have it set to my sink.

1) https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=droom.sleepIfU...

Ah that is a cool way of checking where you are - very cool.

This app came mainly from when we were students (now we are self-employed so it's a similar scenario) and had a similar set up where had to go to our basement (where our computers were) and turn off a similar app there.

However, we soon just learnt to turn it off and go back to bed as there was no penalty for doing so.

So by making it be at a place of work/study/exercise that isn't your home, it means you have to really out get of bed to defeat it.

It's all about finding something that works for you.

Go to Twitter settings and remove the access for that app. Bypassed. Uninstall or flight mode might be another idea.

Seriously, all those todo/productivity/alarm apps that try control you are just bullshit. At least as a techie you could circumvent them all. In the end, it's all about your habit and your will and going to bed earlier etc. and the use of that app is, if any, only some creative reminder. It's important to get that the app itself doesn't solve anything for you.

Also note that if there is any unjustified punishment (in this case e.g. a huge traffic jam, canceled trains, ...) or just misbehavior of the app or the hardware itself (e.g. no location data) the effect might be rather counter-productive.

NEWS FLASH: Man on internet discovers commitment devices require willingness to be bound to the consequences!


>> "Go to Twitter settings and remove the access for that app. Bypassed."

Why would you do that if you have specifically downloaded the app to use that feature? If you were going to remove it from Twitter you would just uninstall the app...

So why do I need that app at all if I could just go to work in time? Why should you come late if you specifically want to be punctual?

Is there a way to cancel it without being at the location? My wife is a nurse, and sometimes she is on call. She gets a call by 4am telling her if she has to come in or not. If she used this, and set an alarm for 7am at the hospital, and then gets a call that says she's canceled, does she still have to drive to work to turn off her alarm?

If there was a way to cancel it without being at the location, that would destroy the use case. The app is targeted at people who know they don't have any willpower and therefore it ought to be strict.

Sorry for your wife, but I think building this feature would be a mistake.

(For the record - apologies to people with no willpower - you could presumably cancel it by revoking the app's Twitter access)

I disagree. Sometimes you can't do things due to circumstances, not willpower. This is what is keeping me from downloading the app. Nice concept though.

Thanks for the feedback, an interesting point. I think we may change it to allow you deactivate up until say an hour before, and maybe a life system that gives you a "get of jail free card".

But you can't be given too many options as morning-brain will do anything to stay in bed.

I would personally choose not to over complicate things and simply make this the app "for when you absolutely, positively, have to be there." If there's a possibility of cancellation, well—you're looking for another app, then. I realize this will decrease the number of times the app is used, but I'd say complicating it would be worse.

I know what you mean. Biggest difficulty was trying and make it clear to the user how the app works. The more features you add, the harder that can get.

Well in my wife's case, where work is a 30 minute drive away, there is no chance she will drive to work to shut off an alarm. Maybe a good override would be to select an alternate location close by that will let you shut off the alarm (e.g. her gym or Starbucks). That way if she's not working, she will at least do something productive instead.

Ahh multiple locations. That is a good idea.

That sounds like a great option for in app purchases.

Tweeting a photo may be a bigger motivator than just text (guessing this is not a current feature based on the screenshot provided in app store.)

Photos would definitely be cool, make it seem a bit more fun - plus writing is a lot of effort.

Would have to be careful about becoming the "Naked photo tweeter app" though.

Yeah, I feel like there are quite a few scenarios where there needs to be a user recovery system, such as yours, or a person being sick, etc. Although I can't really think of anything you could possibly design it with so that it would allow that, while keeping the structure of the location design. If you make it a complicated process to deactivate the alarm, then it just goes back to being an alarm with a complicated process to turn off...

If you put your phone in airplane mode before the time the alarm goes off, it presumably won't be able to go off. I don't know if our will still go off later. At worst, I guess you could uninstall it (and possibly reinstall later).

The server sends the tweet so you could turn the phone off and it would still get sent out.

At the moment, a viable cheat is faking location on your mobile device.

Or de-auth the app on Twitter.

This is the way out at the moment.

What we thought of doing was your submit someone you wouldn't want to tweet and then have an account (the punisher account) tweet them the message saying it was written by you.

When we were at university we had it running on the machines there and it would just wipe your home directory or email your professor - harsh times but good times.

Your wife goes to work helping to save lives all day. I don't think she needs a device that will tweet "fart lmao i'm so random p.s. fuk u j-teen beeber" if she's 2 minutes late due to traffic.

This is a nice example of a "commitment device", "a means with which to lock yourself into a course of action that you might not otherwise choose but that produces a desired result". https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commitment_device

Haha, we'll put a request to Google to create a new app category for it.

Uh oh. One possible scenario-- you get hit by a bus (etc) and your posthumous tweet is a big "fuck you" to everyone you know! I guess one should word the tweet carefully!!

Hmm maybe it should come with a tweeting from the grave warning...

This is actually quite an interesting idea, of making the ability to deactivate the alarm be a designated location rather than a button or answering a question...

There wasn't too much information on it, but does it require activation every night? And is there anything for the users to recover from in case of an emergency of something like that? Or perhaps warning notifications as it gets closer to the time limit.

Hi, one of the creators here.

At the moment you need to activate it every night.

We are thinking of adding a "lives" system which say gives you one free cancel, then perhaps the life regenerates every week.

We're work for ourselves so this app is mainly used to motivate us to get up in the morning, it is difficult to fight the lethargy of morning-brain when you are your own boss.

I actually think the life idea would be a great way to solve unplanned situations, but at the same time sustaining the location feature.

Did you make this with Meteor? Because the "sign out" button looks exactly like it would if you just used the stock accounts package in Meteor.

(and then I went to your website and noticed it was built with Meteor too)

Yep it's cordova phone app that points at a meteor app. We used https://github.com/SpaceCapsule/Meteor-cordova-runtime to help stick them both together.

Made it a lot lot lot lot easier to make (and hopefully we'll be able to get an iOS version out of it too).

It says it's not compatible with my Android 4.2 device.

It requires location information, but I guess your device probably has that.

It's a cordova application running a meteor app, so the .apk was generated from a config. We're pretty new to cordova apps so there may be some problems that we're unaware of.

How about donating a dollar to some charity if you cant make it on time

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