## How to keep tree golden

I finished my spanish tree some time ago and now I´m trying to make it all golden, from top to bottom. I am halfways through the tree, 28 golden lessons if I remember right, it was golden all the way to the third checkpoint (CP) and two more. Yesterday I "regolded" maybe six and the day before that maybe five. My question is: how come, 12 hours later, 8 out of the 14 lessons between CP 2 and CP 3 are now back to color?? Does anyone know what the algorithm is based on? Does the percentage of wrong answers determine how quick the lessons go back to color? Grateful for clarity./B

August 15, 2014

I have a regoldeners club if you would like to join: http://www.duolingo.com/comment/3886661 :)

I have been struggling regoldening my tree for a while, and I have found that the longer I practice, the longer the skills stay golden. Initially I was finding that six or more skills were degolding each day, and I was struggling to keep up. Now I am concentrating on working my way down the tree one row at a time, keeping those skills gold, and only moving on slowly. Now the skills which I have worked on (I am six rows past the final checkpoint) only seem to degold at the rate of around one a day, which is much more manageable.

Another thing that may be helping as well, is that if I get through a lessons with zero or no hearts left, I retake it until I pass it with two or three hearts left. That also seems to help keep the skill gold for a lot longer.

August 16, 2014

Did you perhaps peek at any words? The more you peek at a word, the better chance the skill that has that specific word will go colourful.

August 15, 2014

Thanks for your reply. Yes I did. I admittedly also dismissed too long sentences by pressing any key and then pressing enter to get to the next (hopefully shorter=easier) question. By doing so I get more points, but also a higher percentage of wrong anwers. Is this something that affects the speed in wich golden turns back to color? And how do you know that "The more you peek at a word, the better chance the skill that has that specific word will go colourful"? Is that something you read or something you have tested?

August 15, 2014

Luis and other devs have mentioned the fact that peeking will increase the decay rate of a word's strength on the forums.

The strength of any given skill is in actuality the average strength of the words that are taught in that skill. Each word that you've learned has a strength value associated with it that ranges from 0 to 1. In addition, each word has a decay rate associated with it that affects how quickly that word's strength degrades back to zero.

Each time you practice a word successfully, its strength is increased to 1 and its decay rate is reduced. When you get a word wrong, its strength will still go to 1 (because having just seen it, it's fresh on your mind), but the decay rate increases so that it will require your attention again sooner. If you peek at the hover hints for a word during an exercise, it also increases that word's decay rate, but not by as much. The end result is that if you get a lot of wrong answers or peek a lot, the strength of individual words, and by extension your skills, will decay faster.

Because the strength increases to max whether your practice is successful or not, the decay rate is the best indicator of how well Duolingo thinks you know a word. A word it thinks you know very well might only decay by perhpas 0.0000001 per second, whereas a word that it thinks you don't know very well will decay by roughly 0.00001 per second. Duo doesn't directly expose your vocabulary's decay rates to you, though. You have to estimate them based on the strengths reported in hidden DIVs on the words tab's HTML

As for how best to get your skills to full strength, any time you use a global strengthen skills exercise a maximum of 9 words are targeted for improvement by the app. These are typically the 9 words with the lowest strength rating, and not necessarily from the weakest skills. There are some exceptions and some bugs that can affect this for some users, though. If you complete a practice, those nine targeted words will be raised to full strength along with a smattering of other words, depending on how the sentences are configured within the course. As you can see, strengthening 9 words spread across a number of different skills, it will take a lot of global practices to make a noticeable difference to your skill strengths.

The surest and fastest way to get any skill to strengthen is to do practices specific to that skill because the 9 targeted words will come exclusively from that skill. Even then it might take several practices to raise the average score of the skill's constituent words enough to bring the skill back to a golden state. The best way to ensure that they stay golden is to accomplish this without peaking and without failing any questions. . cGlua29kb3Vn

August 15, 2014

Found it. http://duolingo.wikia.com/wiki/Frequently_asked_questions/Courses?action=render There is a section where it tells you how to strengthen a word or skill.

August 15, 2014

I have begun to wonder if one of the other metrics is whether you are getting the accents right. I'm fairly sure that when I use them correctly the skills stay gold longer. It can be tempting to skip them as they slow down your typing speed so much, but I think it gets taken into account.

August 15, 2014

Missing accents doesn't count against you according to past statements by Luis and others.

August 15, 2014

Interesting. I really got the feeling that was why my tree is behaving better.

August 16, 2014

Thanks for bringing clarity!

August 15, 2014

Let me see if I can find a discussion on this. Or maybe a Wikia entry.

August 15, 2014
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