This may be down to a matter of opinion. In which case, feel free to downvote/close the question.

I've been looking for a word for ages: A word that fits the concept of "only do something once, and only when it is needed"

I still didn't find the word, so awarded a bounty. Now I have 2 answers suggesting the same word. One was quicker (with sufficient explanation), one was answered a little later, but with a more elaborate example of how it could be applied.

Who should get the answer reps?

I wouldn't usually ask, but since there's a 100 bounty on it, I'd prefer to get it right.

  • The bounty still had five or six days before it expired. For all you know someone might have provided an even better answer on the 11th hour! In any case, waiting a little longer would have given the community the opportunity to upvote your question and those answers they agree with.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Jul 16, 2015 at 13:14
  • @Mari-LouA - surely my question would've remained the same; that is - there's an initial quicker response with sufficient explanation, and subsequent responses with more elaborate explanation (could be deemed more thorough, but potentially verbose). And I still have the decision of which to choose. Jul 16, 2015 at 16:05
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    Yes, but in the meantime the answers might have attracted more upvotes, and sometimes users edit and vastly improve their posts. Awarding the bounty so quickly, you deprived the two users the motivation to write a more complete and satisfying answer. Of course, there's no guarantee that would have happened, unless you nudged both of them, but it could have. Take it as a tip, wait until the bounty period (almost) expires before awarding rep points, nothing more or less.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Jul 16, 2015 at 16:13
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    @Mari-LouA - I suppose I was quick to award the bounty given the fact that both answers, in my opinion, were complete. Both people had give sufficient explanation and any more would've just been excessive. I totally understand what you're saying though, a bounty can be incentive for effort for questions that call out for more explanation, and I'll keep it in mind. Jul 16, 2015 at 16:30
  • Now I'm so curious as to what is the word that they both gave you! Or is it out of line to ask? I'm new too...
    – W9WBH
    Jul 21, 2015 at 6:32
  • It was 'indempotent' Jul 28, 2015 at 12:11

1 Answer 1


That's a tough one. You can put this off until the day before the bounty expires. Or not.

It's totally your choice; whichever answer you find more helpful is the one you should choose.

My $.02 (or less, admittedly it's not worth much): If the answer is idempotent, I'd go with the earlier answer for several reasons: 1. He was first. And he defined it sufficiently well. 2. The guy has 399 points, for goodness sake. And he came up with the answer. A bounty is encouraging, and good answerers are an asset to recruit. Upvote the other guy. 3. I kind of have a minor thing about people with a significant amount of rep essentially repeating the answer given 5 hours earlier by a low-rep user. Unless there is a significantly large improvement, it's still just a repetition of an earlier answer with a link thrown in. (Nothing personal against the later answerer, but the definition he gave was cut-and-pasted from his link even.) The first guy defined it in his own words, at least, which is worth something. Maybe even more than $.02.

Your desire to do the right thing is admirable. Your clear willingness to be downvoted or closed is unusual. I hope you stick around.

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    Thanks! Nice welcoming first response. I totally agree now that you've explained it, too. So I gave the first (newer user) the rep. Jul 16, 2015 at 16:01
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    I agree with this entirely (I was the late poster). I did quickly browse the given answers before providing mine but it seems the earlier one evaded my notice. It was certainly sufficient enough that I wouldn't have sought to supplant it had I noticed it... I should probably delete my offering... but that post pushed me over 2k and I''m a sucker for gamification. Jul 16, 2015 at 16:53
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    @DaveMagner - I really mean it; nothing personal. Keep the rep; it was an honest mistake. The link is surely worth that alone! Jul 16, 2015 at 17:50

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