https://www.duolingo.com/cfholton

Would DL restore streaks for people after natural disasters?

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Random thought crossed my mind while doing Hurricane Irma preparations. If we lose power, as we have for up to a week sometimes during and after a hurricane, I'm probably not going to be spending my phone battery on DL. Made me wonder if DL would restore a streak in such circumstances. Definitely won't be something causing me worry, just a fleeting thought this morning.

September 7, 2017

16 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Lrtward
Mod
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The problem becomes how big does a disaster have to be before it warrants a streak restore, and who determines if a disaster is "big" enough? And how do you determine who is "close enough" and who is not? I can't see this happening; the logistics are not manageable.

September 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Marty_Wrin

Good points! I don't know how complicated it would be to code. I do know they have the ability to do some geographical segmentation. If they were to decide to do something like this, they could do it whenever Facebook activates their check-in feature, or whenever a state of emergency is declared. As far as range, I would just error on the side of larger rather than smaller.

I have no idea if they have the bandwidth or the desire to do something like this, but I am quite sure they could do it via coding.

September 10, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/satishvc
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People with natural disasters have bigger concerns to deal with than worrying about streaks. I mean that nicely.

September 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Marty_Wrin

Of course the people directly impacted by a natural disaster have bigger things to worry about. The OP stated as much when she said that she wouldn't use her cell battery for DL if they lost electricity.

Natural disasters are extremely stressful events and when one's life is upended it can help to have little pieces of it functioning normally to cling to. If you have lost your house and belongings, your focus is clearly on obtaining housing, clothes, etc but at the end of the day it could provide a small comfort to get on Duolingo for a few minutes and for many people the streak still being there could lift their spirits a bit.

September 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/cfholton
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Thanks, MartyWrin. We've never lost so much in a hurricane, but we've had house damage more than once -- minor compared to what others have suffered. The camaraderie this week at the empty grocery store shelves where strangers share coping tips and wish each other safety is nice. After a strike, the neighbors who bring a chain saw or offer their pickup to haul a load of yard debris away or who just ask if there's anything your family needs urgently are just the best. When threats loom or tragedy strikes, the small comforts do help. I won't be crushed if my streak is gone and my golden trees are multi-colored after a week of neglect if my family and friends are unharmed. But if I were to discover my DL streak was still intact, maybe it would give me a smile while I waited on hold for the roofer. =)

September 8, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Head-Like-A-Hole

Exactly! Thanks so much for saying this!

September 10, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Far-quaad
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This person is preparing for Irma so I really don't think you are in the position to be criticizing what they might think about, it is a valid concern and whether or not you meant it nicely I still find your comment to be kind of rude...

September 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Marty_Wrin

I think it would be great for them to do that for people living in affected areas!

They don't actually have everyone's current location. I think that they note the location of your IP when you first sign-up. That said, they probably could run a script that restored streaks for every user in affected areas and that would help many, but not all, affected users.

Sending you safe thoughts from DC and hoping that the hurricane weakens by Sunday.

September 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/cfholton
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Thank you for the well wishes! The solution you proposed seems really excellent.

September 8, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/jman05

i'm not against the idea, i just think they wouldn't do that

September 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/jman05

I doubt it, because you wouldn't be able to tell if someone had suffered from a natural disaster or if they were lying to get their streaks back

September 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Far-quaad
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Although making something like this happen is probably not easy for the Duolingo team, it is a valid thought. The PM of Barbados has called the country "barely inhabitable" I hope your life is not affected so drastically.

September 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/cfholton
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Thank you, AntonioSunseri. I am confident that it will not be, but the eye is now projected to come right for us. We prepare, we support each other, we recover.

September 8, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Head-Like-A-Hole

I was just about to ask the same question! Where I live, I wasn't expecting Hurricane Irma to be a problem, except for heavy rainfall. But I just now found out that where I live (in Athens, Georgia) there's currently an official estimate of 20-40% chance of power outages for several days.

Yes, finding out the storm is going to have that much impact where I live means I have more important issues to worry about than keeping my streak.

But I've been working very hard on my Spanish since I first heard about Duolingo and signed up, about 3 weeks ago. And believe it or not, it would make me happy if my streak weren't lost due to circumstances beyond my control.

(Possibly I'm not the only person who feels that way. It would be nice if people wouldn't judge those of us in a hurricane's path, just because we thought about our Duolingo streaks! Learning a language is hard work. We'd rather a natural disaster didn't make it look like we haven't been working hard, when in fact we have.)

September 10, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Thomas.Heiss
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Well, we do not know, how many days you can wait, until the "streak repair" variable (item shown in the store) will be set to "eligible:false" again.

It could be 1-2 days or more.

There was someone with a new 2 days streak (new XP collected - VERY VERY bad idea to do so in a loss!!!) and maybe 3-4 days in between when he lost the streak before and the old streak variable was set to "eligible:false" already.

As the "streak repair" options are there on the apps, I do not even believe that the small DuoLingo team could handle any manual streak repairs anymore for masses...

September 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/cfholton
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I didn't realize my question would generate so much interest! We came safely through the hurricane with far more excitement than we would have liked as the eye passed over, plenty of clean up at our home and elsewhere to occupy our power-free days, some new repair expenses, and greater camaraderie with friends and neighbors. When our power came back on today, there was much rejoicing. I did end up doing DuoLingo a bit every day, and I agree with MartyWinn that having some normalcy helps in times like these. I still think this would be a great service for DuoLingo to offer, but I am grateful for kind friends with power who charged a laptop for us so we could use it to charge our phones for our incessant checks of the power company's updates, checking on and commiserating with loved ones who lost more than we did, researching repair options, and even some DuoLingo.

September 15, 2017
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