Some stats about coffee (and work)

Some of you might know that I… well like stats (just like I like sandstones, but that is a different matter). Last year I started recording my coffee consumption to see if there were any significant changes over time (because, why wouldn’t you do that?). I also started using a time tracking software to see what programs I used how much during my working day (see this post for more details). So now that I am in the “post PhD handin motivational down” (is that a thing?! It must be!), instead of writing papers I spent the last few days looking at all the data I gathered!

Coffee consumption

Let’s have a look at my coffee consumption. The average cups of coffee I drank ranges between ~2.2 to 3.3 and over the last year or so there have been two distinct ups: One the end of December ’14 while the other, major peak is around May ’15. Both are really interesting! The December peak is clearly caused by the lack of sunlight in Edinburgh during the cold (well…) and dark (yes!) winter time. The peak in May is caused by the increasing writing up stress/sleeplessness state I was on at that point.Lets have a closer look at that.




Writing up was going slowly but steadily in February and March, but by the start of April I realised that I needed to pick up in order to finish at one point. This can also be seen in the stats about how much I worked per week (see below).


Another thing I was interested in was what time of the week I would consume the most coffee? Clearly that should be Monday where one is still can’t be bothered to do work, and Friday where one is really tired from the hard weeks work right? Think again! Interestingly, I drank the most coffee at Wednesdays while Mondays and Fridays were the days I drank the least coffee.  On weekends I generally had less coffee, mainly because I got in (much) later so was already more or less awake 🙂


Working hours

The following stats are from RescueTime, the time tracking software I use. The way it tracks time is rather intriguing: It only records time if you are actively doing something. So if you take a few seconds to think while you write it will not record that, but only when you actually write. This then leads that the recorded time is somewhat less than the time you actually spent working (by my feeling it can be up to ~20-30% less). Anhyhow, lets have a look at how much I worked during my writing up phase, which is roughly January to the end of June. There are two kind of weeks: Weeks where I roughly worked 40h and weeks where I worked significantly less. The latter “might” be holidays, but then it would look as if have had loads of holidays so this is highly disputable 😉 Weeks where I worked around 30-35h were weeks where I did not work on the weekends.

Time_perWeekThe interesting thing is that in those weeks where the stats say I worked for ~40h, I spent actually 60h+ in the office. This just shows how much more efficient one could be… There is also in interesting correlation between my coffee consumption and the long weeks in May as I seemed to need more coffee the longer I kept working for long hours (seems logical).

Another thing that I hope you find interesting is how much time I spent doing what whilst I was writing up. I spent most of the time writing in TexStudio (alas writing up time…) but also spent a surprising amount of time reading papers (PDFs) and quite some time drawing figures (Corel Draw) or creating graphs and manipulating data (R Studio). Only a few hours were used to create maps (ArcMap) or 3D sections of already existing models (Move). Quite shocking is the amount of hours I spent on Facebook!


I hope you found this entry entertaining and maybe you now want to record your coffee consumption (or tea, or hot lemon water?) as well? Let me know what kind of stats you think would be useful to record in the future 🙂



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