# Oh Beeminder you are so silly

EEP!

PROBLEM?

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If you do 1 second worth of cleaning you build up some buffer for tomorrow.

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Make it an āintegeryā goal and youāll never see these kinds of problems?

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I donāt think `integery` would interact very well with it being counted in hours. If Beetimerdroid counted in seconds instead of hours I would `integery` them all in a heartbeat.

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Tee hee! Thatās how the math worked out. What did you want us to do??

Actually I recall someone contesting a derailment because of something like this once. Iāll paste my response here, but I know Iām preaching to the choir in your case and you just happily did your fraction of a second of cleaning.

Hi [redacted]! Bethany says I should try you as a sounding board for my crazy
cases like this for a future blog post and would love to get your
thoughts, either in general or as applies to this particular caseā¦

(I think the short version of the wall of text below is that ever
taking a āclose enoughā attitude to a beeminder derailment does a
surprising amount of damage to the future efficacy of beeminder, for
slippery slope type reasons)

What I said to a user recently who thought our hardnosery (like with
that \$1000 UVI payout ā messymatters.com/uvi ) was ludicrous, weāre
only humans, etc:

A few years ago when we were getting started, we experimented heavily
with grace periods and 3-strikes policies and other ways to solve the
problem that youāve astutely identified. But we gradually came to the
conclusion that such leniencies necessarily backfire. Itās like a
No-Free-Lunch Theorem. The reason is that you have to spell out
exactly what the leniency is ā necessary when real money is at stake.
But then once youāve done that youāve just defined a new edge to
skate. Like maybe up to 3 misses per month are allowable. Well, Iām
akratic, so Iām going to squander those 3 freebees early in the month
and be right back where I started.

And worse, unless I understand exactly how the freebees work, Iām
actually making it more likely Iāll derail because Iāll know there
is leniency and Iāll push things as far as I can which means I can
accidentally push them too far. So it turns out to be superior in
every way to just make the road itself less steep but then hard-commit
to staying on it, with no wiggle room. Another way to say it: the
yellow brick road has to be a bright line.

Finally, I very much disagree about āpaying \$1000 to a user for
missing one day in an otherwise superhuman, perfect trend is
ludicrousā and the reason is a fascinating case of game-theoretic
deduction. Suppose we agreed that that was ludicrous: then that
āotherwise superhuman, perfect trendā could never have happened! It
was only because the \$1000 was hanging over our head every day like a
sword of damocles that we were motivated to be so superhuman. And it
worked, for over 1000 days. And then one day it didnāt and we paid up.
Totally worth \$1000 for that 1000 days of superhuman awesomeness. If
there was a way to argue our way out of paying up then the whole point
would be defeated and we wouldnāt be able use the same trick to trick
ourselves into another 1000 days of superhuman awesomeness.

[Notice that weāre now most of the way to those next 1000 days of UVIs! :)]

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I sure did!

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