Activity River: Visualizing Planned and Logged Personal Activities for Reflection

We present Activity River, a personal visualization tool which enables individuals to plan, log, and reflect on their self-defined activities. We are interested in supporting this type of reflective practice as prior work has shown that reflection can help people plan and manage their time effectively. Hence, we designed Activity River based on five design goals (visualize historical and contextual data, facilitate comparison of goals and achievements, engage viewers with delightful visuals, support authorship, and enable flexible planning and logging) which we distilled from the Information Visualization and Human-Computer Interaction literature. To explore our approach's strengths and limitations, we conducted a qualitative study of Activity River using a role-playing method. Through this qualitative exploration, we illustrate how our participants envisioned using our visualization to perform dynamic and continuous reflection on their activities. We observed that they were able to assess their progress towards their plans and adapt to unforeseen circumstances using our tool.