Time is wrong in NOW()

Topic Labels: Dates & Timezones Formulas
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4 - Data Explorer
4 - Data Explorer

I have a formula field containing NOW() and nothing else. The field is showing the wrong time. Right now it's 3:02 a.m. in the desired time zone (Eastern Daylight Time), but the field shows 2:59 a.m. I've attached a screenshot showing the difference between the displayed time and my computer clock.

Weirdly, when I first set it up but hadn't yet changed the time zone from GMT, it was 2:59 a.m. but the field showed 6:03 a.m.

Is this a known bug? I need this field to calculate the difference between when an item is due and the current time (that is, how many days/hours until it's due), and the time does need to be accurate to the minute.

2 Replies 2
18 - Pluto
18 - Pluto

NOW() doesn't update immediately I'm afraid, from the documentation:  

This function updates when the formula is recalculated, when a base is loaded, or otherwise roughly every 15 minutes when a base is open. If the base is closed, it will update approximately every hour only when the base has time-dependent automation triggers or actions, or sync dependencies.

Screenshot 2023-03-24 at 4.58.26 PM.png

I don't know of any workarounds to get accurate to the minute timings either I'm afraid, perhaps someone else will have an idea

8 - Airtable Astronomer
8 - Airtable Astronomer

the only thing I can think of is to create another table with one record in it with a date modified field in it, and then use a script to update that record (or just update manually), and a lookup from each of the records in your first table to the date modified field in the second table. Then the date/time will be correct immediately after the script is run , assuming the script takes less than a minute to run!