sugar: (zizanie [A&O])
Kath ([personal profile] sugar) wrote2010-11-04 08:25 am

You wake up a failure every day.

You guys, I am banned from checking my flist until I finish my NaNoWriMo words for the day and go shopping. This is because, due to NaNoWriMo and the total shake-up to my schedule while waiting for the new job to start, I FORGOT YESTERDAY WAS NEW COMIC BOOK DAY. D:

The store called me at seven last night to tell me my holds were in, and I was like, "It's WEDNESDAY???" They laughed at me. Whoops!

And well, it's not that I don't trust you guys to cut your cutables, it's that I don't trust me not to click them. *whimpers*

Meanwhile, NaNoWriMo (that hated awful-sounding acronym) is going pretty well. I've been keeping almost-a-whole-day ahead the whole time, and my goal for today is to break that "almost" and carry around a full day's buffer.

I partly credit the awful NaNo stats page for my good progress. I have no idea what moron thought it would be a good idea to tell people who were ahead in their word goals that they were having an "unsuccessful day" just because they'd only added 500 words today to their bank of 12,000 from yesterday. Not to mention the fact that it tells you first thing in the morning that you're having an unsuccessful day so far! Congrats, it's 7am and you've done nothing yet, failure!

Due to an overwhelming amount of complaints, they've changed the wording and redone some of the calculations, I think, but the stats page is still full of negative feedback for anyone with any sort of analytical eye to suss out. Mine right now tells me my "Current Trend" is "1 day behind schedule" despite the fact that I'm already 116 words over the 4-day goal, at 9am on day 4. This is because I had the gall to *gasp* carry a buffer over from yesterday. Before the change, there were a lot of fields using this kind of backwards logic to tell you you were a failure before you even got started. Now there's just this one, and the language has been toned down from "unsuccessful" to "behind schedule", to which I'm indifferent.

Hey guys, I know what "behind schedule" means. (Hint: it means unsuccessful.)

It also openly contradicts itself all over the place! Actual fields on my page right now:

Current Word Count 6783
Word Goal to Date 6667
Words Required Today 1667
Current Trend 1 day behind schedule
Days Behind Schedule 0
Days Ahead of Schedule 4

... right.

Anyway, instead of measuring against the cumulative 4-day goal, they're "requiring" a minimum of 1667 words per day to count the day as "successful" (oh, sorry, "ahead of schedule"), and it actually works against you to overachieve on any one day with the goal of taking it easy later on. It seems like no matter how many people point out the very basic difference between words-to-date and words-today, the official answer from NaNo Central is "Well, the stats don't work for everyone - I don't look at 'em, so you shouldn't either."

Uh, guys? If you're telling people not to look at the stats, there's something wrong with your stats. They're overly complex, they're measuring the wrong things, and they require some serious logic checks where the value of "successful" (sorry, "ahead of schedule" again) is spelled out to them in binary terms. All right?

All this to say that, um, the annoying stats issue has actually fuelled my rage and caused me to do well. But not in any way that makes me want to keep the stats the way they are. Negative feedback? Seriously? In the least negative program this side of... damn, I can't think of anything more positive and encourage-y than NaNoWriMo was before this year. I'm sure even Up With People had its seedy underbelly.

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