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Feature Request

Please add a setting for ohm hours so i can set my minimum ohm hour forecasted amount that i will participate in. so if i am about to get an ohm hour where my forecast is .35 kw hours i can automatically opt out without penalty
doing this would make it more predictable for me as well as more predictable for you guys so you don't get penalized when i go over because my forecast is too low.

Comments

  • snetphiliesnetphilie ConcordPosts: 139Member, Moderator

    I can see this as a good feature, but I think to achieve their goals, OhmConnect might need to count this as an Opt Out. I'm guessing losing your streak would eliminate most of the benefit from this feature. At the same time, I also see how users with little to contribute in terms of reductions are also not likely to go over their forecast by a significant amount. Perhaps a "grace range" would help, so if you are .01 over, you receive no penalty?

  • WaterGuyWaterGuy Posts: 414Member, Moderator

    @snetphilie said:
    I can see this as a good feature, but I think to achieve their goals, OhmConnect might need to count this as an Opt Out. I'm guessing losing your streak would eliminate most of the benefit from this feature. At the same time, I also see how users with little to contribute in terms of reductions are also not likely to go over their forecast by a significant amount. Perhaps a "grace range" would help, so if you are .01 over, you receive no penalty?

    I could be wrong, but by "automatically opt out" I think @IanE is suggesting something like the time filters folks can use to choose when they accept OhmHours. I'm not sure how a filter like this would affect OC's earnings--that is, how much of OC's profits come from small-time users and savings compared to individuals with larger events--but I think it's an interesting suggestion. I'd ask whether this type of feature would be primarily aimed at a) avoiding events where you're likely go over your forecast (in OhmConnect's interest too) or b) avoiding events you'd only participate in to maintain your streak, but for which you probably wouldn't otherwise in terms of the points earned (in your interest, but not really in OhmConnect's).

    There's one other important consideration for low-energy users who would consider only participating in the occasional event with an above-average forecast: you have to participate in regular events (I can't remember the exact number, but this was discussed with @Steve Reed in another thread a few weeks back) to maintain a status above Silver.

  • Kate from OhmConnectKate from OhmConnect Posts: 1,049Administrator

    I understand the desire for this idea, but it goes against what we can accomplish. Part of what helps OhmConnect is when you can reduce well below your forecast, despite what your forecast is. It actually sounds like a way around opting out to keep your streak going.....

  • snetphiliesnetphilie ConcordPosts: 139Member, Moderator

    @Kate from OhmConnect said:
    I understand the desire for this idea, but it goes against what we can accomplish. Part of what helps OhmConnect is when you can reduce well below your forecast, despite what your forecast is. It actually sounds like a way around opting out to keep your streak going.....

    That's what I was thinking. If for some reason you get a forecast that is also the least amount you could possibly use (for whatever your reason), it benefits you to not risk losing your steak, but it doesn't benefit OhmConnect. If you opt out, you and OhmConnect don't get penalized so that makes sense, but the point of streaks is to reward you if OhmConnect can reliably count on you to save every time. This is also why I recommended the grace range. Assuming you can't go lower than a certain amount, and your forecast is practically equal to that amount, it would be nice if you went -1 point to not lose your streak. Maybe that extends all the way to -10 points. This would have the same effect as the original request for very low energy users where the impact to OhmConnect would be minimal, but protect OhmConnect from users using this to avoid opting out of they will miss their forecast by a lot.

  • WaterGuyWaterGuy Posts: 414Member, Moderator

    @snetphilie said:

    @Kate from OhmConnect said:
    I understand the desire for this idea, but it goes against what we can accomplish. Part of what helps OhmConnect is when you can reduce well below your forecast, despite what your forecast is. It actually sounds like a way around opting out to keep your streak going.....

    That's what I was thinking. If for some reason you get a forecast that is also the least amount you could possibly use (for whatever your reason), it benefits you to not risk losing your steak, but it doesn't benefit OhmConnect. If you opt out, you and OhmConnect don't get penalized so that makes sense, but the point of streaks is to reward you if OhmConnect can reliably count on you to save every time. This is also why I recommended the grace range. Assuming you can't go lower than a certain amount, and your forecast is practically equal to that amount, it would be nice if you went -1 point to not lose your streak. Maybe that extends all the way to -10 points. This would have the same effect as the original request for very low energy users where the impact to OhmConnect would be minimal, but protect OhmConnect from users using this to avoid opting out of they will miss their forecast by a lot.

    I definitely understand and agree with your and Kate's point, but want to play devil's advocate. It's a little unclear to me how this sort of filter would be different from the time filters OC currently offers users, in terms of its spirit and purpose. Couldn't the statement "My streak wasn't broken because I was excluded from an event I would have otherwise been automatically opted into" be applied to both types of filter approaches? My understanding is that OC offers the time filter option because it's to our mutual benefit--while people can certainly use the time filters to avoid OHs on particular days when they simply don't feel like participating or would risk losing their streak due to a very low forecast (like after returning from vacation), I think the feature is more commonly employed by users to limit OHs to time ranges when they have control over their energy usage (e.g., nighttime for solar users, evening hours for folks who work and don't have smart plugs, etc.). That's certainly how I use it. I guess I see the idea of a minimum forecast filter in a similar way. Like the time filter, you'd have to establish the limit ahead of time--you wouldn't get to choose whether to opt in or out for each individual event.

    Do you think users would stand to gain more non-mutual benefit from a minimum forecast filter than the time filters?

  • UkiwiSUkiwiS San DiegoPosts: 1,576Member, Moderator

    @ianE @snetphilie @WaterGuy

    The forecasts are only accurate for Sat OhmHours and based on my past experience even that's debatable. For virtually all #OhmHours, the forecast will NOT include the most recent data, simply because it's not yet available from the utility. So under this feature request, what would be the plan for addressing that and explaining it to the users? My crystal ball shows a total mess and an already complicated program becoming even more complicated.

  • WaterGuyWaterGuy Posts: 414Member, Moderator
    edited November 2017

    @UkiwiS said:
    @ianE @snetphilie @WaterGuy

    The forecasts are only accurate for Sat OhmHours and based on my past experience even that's debatable. For virtually all #OhmHours, the forecast will NOT include the most recent data, simply because it's not yet available from the utility. So under this feature request, what would be the plan for addressing that and explaining it to the users? My crystal ball shows a total mess and an already complicated program becoming even more complicated.

    That's a great point, @UkiwiS! Unless OhmConnect starts getting historic data more quickly from utilities, I think that problem alone settles the issue for me. It's often the case that my day-before usage plays a significant role in determining my final forecast, especially on Sundays.

    @IanE, make sense to you?

  • IanEIanE Posts: 86Member

    for me this is really all about OHM connect being better able to predict if i will be participating or not so they can make their bid on reduction more accurately...
    I think everyone understand that the initial forecasts are estimates and are ok with that assumption (if not that continues to need to be explained.to new users)

    ideally its not really in my intrest or ohmconnects interest for me to go over or to participate in a ohm hour that is going to cause me to break my streak (everyone loses if i go over)

  • IanEIanE Posts: 86Member

    @WaterGuy said:

    I could be wrong, but by "automatically opt out" I think @IanE is suggesting something like the time filters folks can use to choose when they accept OhmHours.

    exactly!
    opt out is probably the wrong term... i just want to give ohm connect the best data i can so they can predict when they are trying to get me to reduce beyond what is feasably possible (i'm not going to turn off the breaker for an OHM hour) and i do have a minimum burn rate due to things that are always on. I'd just like to set that in advance so they can plan for it and hopefully make more money by having better data so that they aren't expecting me to reduce beyond what is possible.

    I have no problem turning the AC off for an hour in the summer but in the winter my forecasts are much leaner due to the heater being gas.

  • snetphiliesnetphilie ConcordPosts: 139Member, Moderator

    @IanE @WaterGuy @UkiwiS
    The way I see it, is the ultimate goal is to reduce peak usage and flatten the usage curve. If a user can't participate from 9-5 it's easy to predict that they'll use what they normally use during that time, so while they stay the same, OhmConnect can focus on getting others to save. Now imagine a different scenario where good weather for the past two weeks has reduced everyone's forecast but tomorrow it's going to be HOT! A large number of people will have a low forecast and with this proposed feature, they could all not participate without losing their streak. This is technically when OhmConnect needs us the most.

  • IanEIanE Posts: 86Member

    @snetphilie then they should reward us the most on those days... like they did this summer when they rant the triple reward 3 hour ohm hour ...
    they are already letting us block non optimal times they should extend that and let us block non optimal hours. which is just as easy to predict as blocking 9-5...

  • snetphiliesnetphilie ConcordPosts: 139Member, Moderator
    I could imagine them rolling back the time filter at some point, like required participation from 6-10 pm since that's when most OhmHours occur. It all depends on what we as users do. If it becomes more competitive, with more users joining and reducing more energy, OhmConnect will have less incentive to subsidize users who don't reduce as much, even if it's situational.
  • WaterGuyWaterGuy Posts: 414Member, Moderator

    @snetphilie said:
    I could imagine them rolling back the time filter at some point, like required participation from 6-10 pm since that's when most OhmHours occur. It all depends on what we as users do. If it becomes more competitive, with more users joining and reducing more energy, OhmConnect will have less incentive to subsidize users who don't reduce as much, even if it's situational.

    I think it'd be tough for them to roll back the time filter without making big changes for the solar folks. We'd be a big risk for major losses to OC on cloudy days if we were all forced to participate during daylight hours.

  • IanEIanE Posts: 86Member

    @Kate from OhmConnect said:
    I understand the desire for this idea, but it goes against what we can accomplish. Part of what helps OhmConnect is when you can reduce well below your forecast, despite what your forecast is. It actually sounds like a way around opting out to keep your streak going.....

    I'm bummed that you think so... the way to are responding to this makes me think that you don't really understand the request. which is why i want to explain it better because clearly i am failing to express my idea well here.
    is there any way we can keep the discussion going rather than shutting it down?
    This would also benefit folks who have solar so they don't get ohm hours when their forecast is negative.
    I guess i don't really see the downside here it seems like this would help OC also have more predictable forecasts of what savings they can bid and be successful with so they aren't penalized because folks miss the savings target.

  • WaterGuyWaterGuy Posts: 414Member, Moderator

    @IanE said:

    @Kate from OhmConnect said:
    I understand the desire for this idea, but it goes against what we can accomplish. Part of what helps OhmConnect is when you can reduce well below your forecast, despite what your forecast is. It actually sounds like a way around opting out to keep your streak going.....

    I'm bummed that you think so... the way to are responding to this makes me think that you don't really understand the request. which is why i want to explain it better because clearly i am failing to express my idea well here.
    is there any way we can keep the discussion going rather than shutting it down?
    This would also benefit folks who have solar so they don't get ohm hours when their forecast is negative.
    I guess i don't really see the downside here it seems like this would help OC also have more predictable forecasts of what savings they can bid and be successful with so they aren't penalized because folks miss the savings target.

    Hi Ian. Maybe I can help answer your question in a clear way, as I understand it:

    While the feature you're proposing might hold some benefit for OC, in that people with very low forecasts who might exceed those during a given event would avoid that situation, the benefit to OC would probably be very minor. First, I don't think many people intentionally blow past their forecast when they're participating--it always makes more sense to opt out of an event if you're planning to go over your forecast. (Say, for example, if you're hosting a party or something and forgot to adjust your filters ahead of time.) You still lose your streak when you opt out, but you'd lose that anyway by going over, and at least you wouldn't lose points. If people with low forecasts are trying to save but just barely miss their forecasts, they're probably losing just a few points and their overages have little effect on OC's net provided reduction for that event. (I think OC would likely be more concerned about people like @UkiwiS with very high forecasts who would really hurt OC's ability to provide the reductions they bid on.) Also, keep in mind that you're penalized with a points reduction when you go over--while OC might lose money on you for that particular event, they'll likely make it up when you participate in future events and effectively make them money without receiving any compensation for your efforts.

    So, the feature might provide a very small, possibly negligible benefit for OC. On the other side of the equation, it would definitely produce a large cost for them in that it would make it much easier for people to maintain their streaks--and currently, streak bonuses are very expensive for OC.

    I think in most cases, OC would rather you go over and lose them a few cents for that event (which they'll probably make up in future events while you re-earn your lost points), but also lose your streak, than give you a tool to make it even easier to maintain your streak. It's hard to imagine that the small benefit a filter like you're proposing would outweigh the cost. It would certainly be nice for us users, but probably wouldn't be a good business decision for OC.

    Finally (and I apologize if it sounds like I'm trying to be disagreeable--that certainly isn't my intention), I disagree with this statement from your post: "This would also benefit folks who have solar so they don't get ohm hours when their forecast is negative." As a solar user, I'd be very limited if I missed all events in which my forecast is negative. As long as I make sure the loading I can control is larger in magnitude than what I'm producing (usually during late afternoon or evening hours), being able to participate even when I'm a net producer gives me access to many OhmHours I'd otherwise miss, and I'd lose a lot of money over the long run. That wouldn't be beneficial to me or OhmConnect.

  • IanEIanE Posts: 86Member

    no offense here even if you don't agree with me i can value your point of view (even if it is wrong :) )
    ok... i guess i will just block out my low usage times like weekends and after 10pm
    that way i protect my streak
    I'm still a bit disappointed that ohm connect dosent see the value in making it so everyone wins rather than having an us vs them conflict over long running streaks. that are unsustainable.

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