As noted, the quality of many questions on Code Golf SE leaves a lot to be desired.

dmckee mentioned about the SO golfing rules that have made golf contests in SO much more successful. I think we should adopt a similar system here.

Two questions:

  1. Should we use the SO rules verbatim, or should we come up with our own set of rules?
  2. How stringently should they be enforced? Who should enforce them?
    1. Given that we don't have too many high rep users, should moderators step in to enforce them?
    2. Should we revisit this when we have many more high rep users?

Comments welcome.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Looks like code-golf was cleaned off of SO. Do you have a copy of the rules, for those of us not familiar? \$\endgroup\$
    – Iszi
    Nov 18 '13 at 18:32
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Iszi I've copied the text here, in case the original post is no longer accessible. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 18 '13 at 19:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ Mostly good stuff there, though some of it doesn't seem to be in common use anymore (some for good reason?). It would be nice if the golfing guidelines (for both questions and answers) were a bit more easily accessible than having to wade through the new help interface. \$\endgroup\$
    – Iszi
    Nov 18 '13 at 19:15

I'm far more likely to answer a question if it is clearly written and has some test cases.

Signs of a good code-golf

  • Lots of answers
  • Lots of languages
  • Test cases
  • Can write a non-golfed solution in 5-20 mins
  • Not too easy
  • Question gets lots of upvotes

Signs of a bad code-golf

  • Few answers
  • Lots of comments asking for clarifications
  • Question gets lots of downvotes
  • Too hard - maybe should just be a code-challenge
  • Too easy
  • \$\begingroup\$ What is your threshold of »lots« here? \$\endgroup\$
    – Joey
    Mar 21 '11 at 20:36
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Joey, 6. Having said that, koch-snowflake has only just made it to 6 answers after ~5 weeks, but people have suggested to me that it may be too-hardish too \$\endgroup\$
    – gnibbler
    Mar 22 '11 at 2:11

Well, I think the rate limiting rule would need to go.

Also, there is a rule in the Stack Overflow list that makes really hard question forbidden, and I think we can support a few more difficult that average questions here.

Thinks like

Neither of which have any attempted solutions as yet.

Maybe we should rate-limit those.


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