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#1 2006-01-02 17:46:00

Komodo
Member
From: Oxford, UK
Registered: 2005-11-03
Posts: 674

Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

Guidelines and Rules

· The competiton has NO PRIZE, it is done for sport's sake.

· So that programmers of all abilities can compete, the challenge made each month must have 3 categories:

:arrow: Novice :- This category gives a challenge that relative beginners to the coding world can attempt. This would include simple data storage and retrieval and basic GUI implementation. A few bugs or glitches are permissible, so long as the program generally functions as it's supposed to.

:arrow: Intermediate :- The same challenge as for Novices, but with more conditions to be met, such as using a particular data structure (= arrays, lists, vectors), a limit on the number of lines of code (with a short description of where the use of semicolons for same-line commands are allowed, e.g. only for variable assignments), or simply a larger required feature set. Code should not have any noticeable bugs.

Note: The Intermediate level is the 'normal' degree of difficulty, and most challenge designs should not need to be oversimplified or made more complex for this level of programmer.

:arrow: Advanced :- The same challenge as for Novices and Intermediates but with very restricting or challenging conditions to be met. This may include a maximum amount of RAM to be used, an entirely different approach to the problem required, or a much harder and complex additional feature that must be implemented. Code must be bug-free.

· The choice of challenge for each month's competition will be up to the next person on the participation list (we will go in order of signing up, so the same order as is shown below).

:arrow: Challenges should be as unique as possible, and as fun and stimulating as you can make them. The idea of the competition is to attract people to try programming, and to help those already coding gain more experience with, and insight into, the tools they use. Hopefully as a result of the monthly competitions, someone will come up with an original idea that can be developed further once the competition has drawn to a close.

:arrow: If a challenge is deemed to be too dull or monotonous by more than 30% of the other competitors, the challenger will be asked to come up with a new idea.

:arrow: If you have a particularly good idea for a challenge, you may PM the next month's selector, and ask him/her if you can choose next month's challenge instead. If he/she accepts, they will take their turn the following month, and you will miss your turn when your numbered position in the list is next reached.

· Each challenge must be posted in the General Programming Forum with the title '[month] Programming Competition'. The challenger for any particular month must present their challenge by the 3rd day of that month.

:arrow: The challenger's post should be be clear and concise, simply containing the underlined and enlarged title '[month] Programming Competition' followed by clearly separated challenge instructions for Novice, Intermediate and Advanced competitors. At the bottom of the post please state the deadline date in bold lettering, and also have a link to this thread titled 'Guidelines and Rules' at the very bottom of your post. Hint-giving and well-wishing is permissible in the main post, but please try to keep it brief!

· The deadline for entries will be 3 days before the end of the month (e.g. if the month has 31 days, the deadline will be the 28th day of that month, since that will leave 3 clear days - 29th,30th,31st - before the month is over). Entries must be given in by midday (local time) on the deadline date.

:arrow: If an entry is noticeably late, it may be included with the other entries for judging at the discretion of the challenger. If your entry is rejected on the grounds that it is late, please do not verbally attack the challenger.

· Judging will be by vote: every person on the 'Competitors' list (see below) may vote, regardless of whether or not they've participated in that month's challenge. Reasons must be given by each person for their choice of winner. No one may vote for themselves! If you genuinely feel that your entry is better than that of the other participants, then either abstain from voting, or select the person whose work is (IYO) closest to your high standard wink

:arrow: Judging is not category-independent - you should give extra merit to those novices who've made a clean job of things, and judge harshly mistakes made by those entering at the advanced level.

:arrow: Voting will take place during the 3 day period after the closing date for each months competition. Votes cast after this period will be ignored.

· Competitors need not take part every in every month's competition, but if they miss 3 months in a row, they will lose their right to choose a challenge the next time their number comes up.

· Any programming language(s) may be used, so long as the necessary compiler and libraries are available through pacman, or a working PKGBUILD and/or prebuilt package of such software is available online (and a link posted by the entrant using this software). Web interfaces, GTK clients and CLI implementations are all allowed. Note: If possible, please do not have large KDE or GNOME dependencies for whatever GUI libraries you use.

· Entries must NOT require special priveleges in order to be executed.

· Any network usage by your program must be pointed out to the rest of the participants (via your entry post in that month's competition thread) and clearly explained. The same rule applies for any files read by your software, as well as files created.

:arrow: Entries may only produce files in their own directory, nowhere else on the filesystem.

:arrow: Reading of any file within the base hierarchy of the file structure is allowed.

· Submitted code should be well laid-out and commented as much as possible (so that others might learn from your entry). Additionally, all submitted code must be hosted online in tar.gz or tar.bz2 format. If anyone can't find somewhere to host their work, email it to one of the people offering hosting (see below).

:arrow: When your code is complete and available online, you should make a post in the challenge thread stating at which level of the competition you are entering (Novice, Intermediate or Advanced). You should alse give details of network usage, file access and file creation utilised by your program (as described in the guidelines above). In addition, you may like to add a short description of how your code works (which, if possible, should be included as a block comment somewhere in your code).

Note: Anyone else who wishes to participate, or dispute the rules, should make a request post in this thread. Please read the rules carefully before signing up or making a complaint.

Competitors

· Komodo
· deficite
· shadowhand
· syamajala
· iphitus
· whatah
· kleptophobiac
· demonus
· phrakture
· cactus
· Shofs
· LB06
· codemac
· iBertus


People offering hosting

· Komodo
· LB06

*Anyone who wishes to offer hosting for the programming competition entries, please PM me your email address*

If you intend to send your work to one of the hosters above, please send it via email in .tar.gz or .tar.bz2 format. Mail it at least a day before the deadline date, so that the hoster is not rushed to upload your material. This is out of courtesy.


.oO Komodo Dave Oo.

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#2 2006-01-02 23:52:58

deficite
Member
From: Augusta, GA
Registered: 2005-06-02
Posts: 693

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

This may include a maximum amount of RAM to be used

Isn't this backwards? I figured the novices should have more leeway on memory usage.

If a challenge is deemed to be too dull or monotonous by 4 or more of the other competitors, the challenger will be asked to come up with a new idea.

What if we have like 30 people (I know we probably never will, just making up a number)? I think it should be changed to a percentage or something to the like.

I have a bad feeling that in the first few competitions there might not be enough people to fill all the difficulty levels. Perhaps for now we can just have beginner and advanced? It'd be boring if somebody won be default.

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#3 2006-01-03 00:08:10

syamajala
Member
From: here, there, everywhere
Registered: 2005-01-25
Posts: 604
Website

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

when you say it must be available through pacman does that mean it has to be in the official repos or could it be something like e17 that you can get from somebody's repo? or, could someone that enters this contest start a repo with the needed packages if they choose some weird lib to work with.

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#4 2006-01-03 00:25:44

kleptophobiac
Member
From: Sunnyvale, CA
Registered: 2004-04-25
Posts: 481

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

Where's this month's challenge Komodo?! You are the first to choose, no?

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#5 2006-01-03 01:07:35

Komodo
Member
From: Oxford, UK
Registered: 2005-11-03
Posts: 674

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

LOL, waaah! So many comments! Ok ok, one at a time.

Forgive my multiple posting, whichever mods are watching, but I really can't cope with quoting everyone at once in a single post, lol!


.oO Komodo Dave Oo.

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#6 2006-01-03 01:08:12

Komodo
Member
From: Oxford, UK
Registered: 2005-11-03
Posts: 674

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

deficite wrote:

This may include a maximum amount of RAM to be used

Isn't this backwards? I figured the novices should have more leeway on memory usage.

...so you mean instead of limiting the advanced users, limit the advanced AND normal users and DON'T limit the novices? Explain yourself sir tongue

deficite wrote:

If a challenge is deemed to be too dull or monotonous by 4 or more of the other competitors, the challenger will be asked to come up with a new idea.

What if we have like 30 people (I know we probably never will, just making up a number)? I think it should be changed to a percentage or something to the like.

Irritatingly pedantic, yet nonetheless correct deficite; I've changed it to 'more than 30%'. Does that seem like a reasonable figure to everyone?

I have a bad feeling that in the first few competitions there might not be enough people to fill all the difficulty levels. Perhaps for now we can just have beginner and advanced? It'd be boring if somebody won be default.

How could someone win by default? I don't see the point in obscuring one of the difficulty levels; there's no need for it, other than to simplify the task of defining a challenge. It makes no difference how many people partake in each category; in judging we will consider all participants in all categories, and we will judge each program with respect to the category it's in (i.e. you won't always have the winner being an advanced entrant... I hope :?). I've edited the rules to clarify this.

Read my post below about switching places please deficite smile


.oO Komodo Dave Oo.

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#7 2006-01-03 01:12:52

Komodo
Member
From: Oxford, UK
Registered: 2005-11-03
Posts: 674

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

syamajala wrote:

when you say it must be available through pacman does that mean it has to be in the official repos or could it be something like e17 that you can get from somebody's repo? or, could someone that enters this contest start a repo with the needed packages if they choose some weird lib to work with.

Hmm.. well I did mean just pacman, but I guess that's unnecessarily limiting. If the libraries can be (or already are) hosted online in PKGBUILD or prebuilt .pkg.tar.gz format then they may be used. I have edited the rules to accommodate this added flexibility. Thanks for pointing this out, syamajala wink


.oO Komodo Dave Oo.

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#8 2006-01-03 01:18:38

Komodo
Member
From: Oxford, UK
Registered: 2005-11-03
Posts: 674

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

kleptophobiac wrote:

Where's this month's challenge Komodo?! You are the first to choose, no?

LOL, easy tiger :shock:

Actually, I wanted to ask deficite if he fancied swapping positions with me, and I'll suggest something next month... I've actually got a really good idea (IMO tongue) but I want to think it out a bit more before writing it down, and we really need to get the ball rolling now.

So deficite, can you come up with an idea promptly? Feel free to post more about the rules first; we need to make sure everyone's happy with them.

If anyone else is particularly desperate to share their idea for this month's challenge, or if deficite can't deliver the goods (:twisted:) then we'll let someone else go first.

Just to clarify though: I AM going to choose next month's competition. And that's final big_smile


.oO Komodo Dave Oo.

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#9 2006-01-03 01:34:01

poetofnumbers
Member
From: Kansas, United States
Registered: 2004-10-30
Posts: 106
Website

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

Komodo wrote:

How could someone win by default?

If there is only one competitor in a difficulty level, then that competitor is the default winner, for that level.


Sweet, now I can play with myself.

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#10 2006-01-03 01:42:53

Cerebral
Forum Fellow
From: Waterloo, ON, CA
Registered: 2005-04-08
Posts: 3,108
Website

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

poetofnumbers wrote:
Komodo wrote:

How could someone win by default?

If there is only one competitor in a difficulty level, then that competitor is the default winner, for that level.

If you read the entire post, Komodo goes on to say

Komodo wrote:

we will judge each program with respect to the category it's in (i.e. you won't always have the winner being an advanced entrant... I hope)

Meaning that there isn't one winner per level; there's one winner per contest.

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#11 2006-01-03 01:58:56

Komodo
Member
From: Oxford, UK
Registered: 2005-11-03
Posts: 674

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

Cerebral wrote:

If you read his entire post, he goes on to say

Komodo wrote:

we will judge each program with respect to the category it's in (i.e. you won't always have the winner being an advanced entrant... I hope)

Meaning that there isn't one winner per level; there's one winner per contest.

Yes indeedy smile


.oO Komodo Dave Oo.

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#12 2006-01-03 05:38:37

jellywerker
Member
From: Sunny Seattle
Registered: 2005-04-04
Posts: 286

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

Seems interesting, should make for some good motivation for me. I think I'll join next month or so, not prepared enough for even the novice level now.

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#13 2006-01-03 06:19:55

dust
Member
Registered: 2005-06-04
Posts: 152
Website

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

I'm planning on joining next month after I've done some grunt work in Ruby to make it worth my while smile .


Writing stories for a machine.

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#14 2006-01-03 16:39:11

phrakture
Arch Overlord
From: behind you
Registered: 2003-10-29
Posts: 7,879
Website

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

Add me - and add cactus for good measure... I'd say add Dusty too, but he seems real busy.

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#15 2006-01-03 17:20:42

Komodo
Member
From: Oxford, UK
Registered: 2005-11-03
Posts: 674

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

Done, and done wink

I've been speaking to Dusty more frequently now xerxes2 has let me onto the Magnum team... he always seems REALLY busy; I feel sorry for him. He seems to be able to handle his hectic schedule, but methinks it must suck to not have free time to do all the stuff you want... I think he's irritated that he can't spend more time on Magnum for starters :?

I'm gonna PM deficite, since he hasn't responded about me swapping months with him... if he doesn't say something over the next couple of days, someone else can shift their place and choose this month instead smile


.oO Komodo Dave Oo.

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#16 2006-01-03 17:35:02

Shofs
Member
From: Central Illinois
Registered: 2004-12-15
Posts: 184

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

I am assuming the competition will be posted here for all to see.  In which case, I will most likely try my hands at it too.  I would say add me to the list but I don't know if I will actually have anything to show by the time it is over.  I guess you could add me after all, I don't mind taking very last place if I decide I am too busy to compete.

EDIT
"every person on the 'Competitors' list (see below) may vote, regardless of whether or not they've participated in that month's challenge"

I guess in that case I could be a listed competitor and not have to participate if I am too busy, which works for me.

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#17 2006-01-03 18:18:04

deficite
Member
From: Augusta, GA
Registered: 2005-06-02
Posts: 693

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

I'm sorry about not responding to your PM's, I only know if they're there when I get my e-mail notifying me of them. A little bitty text message at the top right of the screen doesn't catch my attention all too well sad

Well, if you want to swap with me, I guess that is fine. I have no idea what to make the competition about since this is the first one, and school starts back tomorrow. How late do you need the idea for the competition?

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#18 2006-01-03 19:50:41

Komodo
Member
From: Oxford, UK
Registered: 2005-11-03
Posts: 674

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

It's up to you when you come up with the idea deficite, since it's such short notice wink

Here's some extra info that I've added to the Guidelines & Rules post; please read it carefully, everyone who's signed up.

The deadline for entries will be 3 days before the end of the month - so deficite, the deadline for yours will be January 28th (which leaves 3 clear days until the end of the month).

Entries must be given in by midday (local time) on the deadline date - since none of us is more than 9hours away from each other in terms of timezone (I don't think), midday local time means that it'll be available to everyane by midnight (at the latest) on the deadline date, if you follow me.

If you need me to host your code online, it'd be good if you could hand it in a few hours early, so I'm not rushed to upload it - this is a matter of courtesy. - nuff said wink  This is only in the situation where you have no hosting yourself and do not know someone else who will host it for you, as mentioned earlier in the guidelines & rules.

The challenger for any particular month must present their challenge by the 3rd of that month. - this will give the challenger for that month some thinking time after the 3 day voting period of the previous month; note that it says 'BY the 3rd of that month', so you may post earlier if you wish (although not more than 2 days earlier, since that would mean it's posted in the previous month, lol).

The challenge must be posted in the General Programming Forum with the title '[month] Programming Competition'. - so deficite's will be entitled 'January Programming competition'.
The challenger's post should be be clear and concise, simply containing the underlined and enlarged title '[month] Programming Competition' followed by clearly separated challenge instructions for Novice, Intermediate and Advanced competitiors. Hint-giving and well-wishing is permissible in the main post, but please try to keep it brief!

I hope everyone's ok with all that? Let me know if not wink


.oO Komodo Dave Oo.

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#19 2006-01-03 19:59:41

LB06
Member
From: The Netherlands
Registered: 2003-10-29
Posts: 435

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

I also signed up for the contest. If I can be of help if someone has a problem with the availability of hosting: I have around 7GB (more on request :-)) per month spare on a very fast server, so if you want me to host something: just ask!

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#20 2006-01-03 20:23:17

Komodo
Member
From: Oxford, UK
Registered: 2005-11-03
Posts: 674

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

Our numbers have swelled pleasingly smile

I've added you to the list LB06 - it's great you've offered to host peoples' code as well; I've got 2GB space online, but my site takes about 10 secs to connect to, irritatingly. It's fast when you're in though tongue


.oO Komodo Dave Oo.

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#21 2006-01-03 20:29:56

LB06
Member
From: The Netherlands
Registered: 2003-10-29
Posts: 435

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

Komodo wrote:

Our numbers have swelled pleasingly smile

I've added you to the list LB06 - it's great you've offered to host peoples' code as well; I've got 2GB space online, but my site takes about 10 secs to connect to, irritatingly. It's fast when you're in though tongue

Hmm. I only have like 450MB, but I have >15GB of traffic left and it should be very fast. I can confirm it can go up to 8mbit/s (max of my download) in and around the Netherlands.

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#22 2006-01-03 20:35:04

Komodo
Member
From: Oxford, UK
Registered: 2005-11-03
Posts: 674

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

LB06 wrote:
Komodo wrote:

Our numbers have swelled pleasingly smile

I've added you to the list LB06 - it's great you've offered to host peoples' code as well; I've got 2GB space online, but my site takes about 10 secs to connect to, irritatingly. It's fast when you're in though tongue

Hmm. I only have like 450MB, but I have >15GB of traffic left and it should be very fast. I can confirm it can go up to 8mbit/s (max of my download) in and around the Netherlands.

Heh, I dunno why we're having this convo tbh.. it's not like anyone's gonna produce enough code to go over a meg.... or are they? :shock:


.oO Komodo Dave Oo.

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#23 2006-01-03 21:56:11

LB06
Member
From: The Netherlands
Registered: 2003-10-29
Posts: 435

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

Komodo wrote:
LB06 wrote:
Komodo wrote:

Our numbers have swelled pleasingly smile

I've added you to the list LB06 - it's great you've offered to host peoples' code as well; I've got 2GB space online, but my site takes about 10 secs to connect to, irritatingly. It's fast when you're in though tongue

Hmm. I only have like 450MB, but I have >15GB of traffic left and it should be very fast. I can confirm it can go up to 8mbit/s (max of my download) in and around the Netherlands.

Heh, I dunno why we're having this convo tbh.. it's not like anyone's gonna produce enough code to go over a meg.... or are they? :shock:

Well, I'm not. smile I was just bored tongue

Ok. Ontopic: When will the first challenge be announced?

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#24 2006-01-03 22:20:05

Komodo
Member
From: Oxford, UK
Registered: 2005-11-03
Posts: 674

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

As soon as deficite pulls his finger out and gets back to us tongue

Since it's only 3rd Jan atm, according to the (rather excellently written) rules we'll be on track (in case you didn't read it - and you SHOULD have wink - the challenger gets the first 3 days of the month to think up a challenge).

Even so, get it out there as quickly as you can deficite big_smile

@deficite: make sure you read the bit in the rules about the format of the challenger's thread please.


.oO Komodo Dave Oo.

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#25 2006-01-03 22:33:44

LB06
Member
From: The Netherlands
Registered: 2003-10-29
Posts: 435

Re: Monthly Programming Competition: Guidelines and Rules

I did read them. I just didn't remember all of them tongue

Anyway, I'm really curious what the assignment will be like. Btw it's almost Januari 4th here tongue

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