A reader tips me to "Human nature is on the line":
...stickK.com , scheduled to launch in December 2007, will provide "commitment contracts" that let individuals set a goal, choose consequences for failing to comply, and decide how to verify their progress. With the options of choosing to lose money every time they fail and designating third-party verifiers to check their success, users will face powerful incentives to meet their goals.
Tyler says "It's not exaggerating to say that human nature is on the line here, and that if I am wrong this is probably the most important idea you will ever encounter."
Don't undersell it, buddy. But of course he's not wrong. Those of us who have spent our lives on that treadmill know that no consequences you set for yourself are ever sufficient to alter your motivational structure - in general they are only effective at making you feel worse.
Don't get me wrong, I'm glad they're trying. But if they want it to REALLY work it has to function like Quitters, Inc. Oh shoot, someone else already said that in his comments. Hilariously, the second commenter cites a big check to the RNC as a negative incentive, which longtime readers will recall was how I tried to motivate myself for nanowrimo last year. Score: republicans 1000, paulp 0.