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Throughout all of PPCG, we can find questions relating to the tag . Unfortunately, finding the lowest byte answer for questions can be difficult if not frustrating without an automatic system for scoring.

Good thing we have a scoreboard!

Shame it's sometimes hard to find, and new users might not have even encountered it before.

Therefore, the Feature Request:

Why not have a bot of some sort, a dummy user, that does one of the following:

  • edits in questions and adds the scoreboard onto the end of the file?
  • edits all challenges with a new tag and adds the scoreboard onto the end of them, also removing the tag?

The latter existing for moderators to instantly add a scoreboard or for users without automatic editing to suggest the scoreboard.

Or, Even Better:

Add it to the Featured menu over on the right and the introduction page. This gives the newer users the opportunity to find it quickly and for current users to be able to get it quickly as well. (as suggested by @AlexA.

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  • 5
    \$\begingroup\$ As someone who has never used a leaderboard in my challenges, I don't see what the big deal is. For some questions it may be handy, but I definitely don't want to see them appended to every code golf challenge on the site. For many, it would just be extra scrolling to get to the answers without a major benefit at all. \$\endgroup\$ – Geobits Nov 8 '15 at 4:43
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    \$\begingroup\$ Based on community consensus (and chats with other moderators and a Stack Exchange employee), the feature request for a bot has been declined. \$\endgroup\$ – Alex A. Nov 9 '15 at 19:59
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    \$\begingroup\$ Based on moderator consensus, making it a featured meta post has also been declined. \$\endgroup\$ – Alex A. Nov 9 '15 at 21:09
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No.

To have bots that autonomously make edits is annoying, intrusive, and error-prone. If someone wants to have a Stack Snippet, he/she should edit it in manually.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Yes. 2,000% agreed. Though I kind of said the same thing already in my post. \$\endgroup\$ – Alex A. Nov 7 '15 at 21:07
  • \$\begingroup\$ While you are correct in saying that it is error-prone, I think the bot would be helpful. How would you suggest we allow new users and previous users both know of its existence and be able to access the leaderboard easier or be able to find it themselves easier? \$\endgroup\$ – Addison Crump Nov 7 '15 at 21:11
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    \$\begingroup\$ @VoteToClose We can make Martin's template a featured meta post. It would appear on the right side where the link to the sandbox is. \$\endgroup\$ – Alex A. Nov 7 '15 at 21:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ ^ THAT would be a valuable answer. @AlexA. \$\endgroup\$ – Addison Crump Nov 7 '15 at 21:16
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    \$\begingroup\$ -1, if I could. this is by no annoying, if done correctly. \$\endgroup\$ – Seadrus Nov 7 '15 at 21:16
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Seadrus Whether it's annoying is subjective. While some may not find it annoying, others might. \$\endgroup\$ – Alex A. Nov 7 '15 at 21:18
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Make the template a featured meta post

That way it would appear on the right side next to the link to the sandbox. That would make it visible. Anyone who wants it can just click on it, copy, paste, done.


Note: Per moderator consensus, we have decided not to move forward with this idea.

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    \$\begingroup\$ I definitely agree with this. It gets rid of any problems with the bots and would solve the problem of finding issues. +1 \$\endgroup\$ – Addison Crump Nov 7 '15 at 21:37
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    \$\begingroup\$ I'd rather see the Sandbox as the only long term featured post, as it's the most important thing for helping improve question quality. \$\endgroup\$ – trichoplax Nov 7 '15 at 22:40
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No

Whether a challenge contains a leaderboard should be up to the challenge author; it should not be inserted automatically. If a challenge author wants one, they can use Martin's template. Not all challenges are the same so a one-size-fits-all leaderboard doesn't always make sense anyway.

Further, tags are intended to categorize challenges. As such, a tag or similar makes no sense in terms of the purpose of tags. If at any time no challenges bear this tag, it will be automatically deleted by the system, so it would have to be continuously recreated anyway.

New users are no more likely to know of the existence of a tag (or auto-insert keyword for that matter) than they are of Martin's template. People developing challenges can just copy the template for themselves. If a new user wants one, we can provide a link to it or we can just edit it into the post.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ If the author doesn't want a leaderboard, they don't need to tag it. \$\endgroup\$ – phase Nov 7 '15 at 20:50
  • \$\begingroup\$ See: "...also removing the tag". The tag would not be a tag that would exist in questions. And @phase's comment. \$\endgroup\$ – Addison Crump Nov 7 '15 at 20:50
  • \$\begingroup\$ @phase See edit \$\endgroup\$ – Alex A. Nov 7 '15 at 20:53
  • \$\begingroup\$ @VoteToClose See edit \$\endgroup\$ – Alex A. Nov 7 '15 at 20:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ I think that the leaderboard is so universally good that it should be opt-out rather than opt-in. Comparing answers scores by language is central to code golf, and it is only because we are based on a Q&A platform that this feature does not exist natively. Barring challenges where the format doesn't make sense like C&R, where the posted can opt out, I see no reason the decision should be up to the challenge author. \$\endgroup\$ – xnor Nov 8 '15 at 7:02
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Leaderboard inclusion statement

We don't need a tag statement for this! Just add one of the following line to your question:

# Leaderboard

## Leaderboard

Leaderboard
=

Leaderboard
-

Let the bot edit all questions with this heading so that there is a leaderboard afterwards! This is a non-intrusive way of doing it; this heading doesn't appear when not referring to the scoreboard, and nothing else is really used to refer to the scoreboard anyhow.

On the issue of a common keyword and solution

I concede that the word "Leaderboard" is too broad. I then suggested "Bot Leaderboard"; this was also deemed to broad. Agreed, there might be one or two posts that have this title. So let us therefore reason together, not attack one another! We could use any of the following:

  • Leaderboard bot
  • include leaderboard
  • {{Leaderboard}}
  • PPCG leaderboard
  • ~ leaderboard

Do not limit yourself to my words. The possibilities are endless.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Doing it this way, via a single keyword, is dangerous; it has the potential to mess up a challenge and its formatting significantly. Also, if a new user makes a manual leaderboard (think like Calvin's language showcase), this would add a leaderboard in addition to it. \$\endgroup\$ – Alex A. Nov 7 '15 at 21:01
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    \$\begingroup\$ @AlexA. Easy fix; just reserve a designated keyword, such as "Bot Leaderboard" or something. \$\endgroup\$ – Conor O'Brien Nov 7 '15 at 21:03
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    \$\begingroup\$ Like I said in my post, a new user is no more likely to know about that than they are about Martin's template. \$\endgroup\$ – Alex A. Nov 7 '15 at 21:03
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    \$\begingroup\$ @AlexA. Therefore make it known to them? Can we not edit our own tour page? Besides, you simply ignored my secondary suggestion. Are you against it simply for being against the idea of a bot-inserted leaderboard? \$\endgroup\$ – Conor O'Brien Nov 7 '15 at 21:05
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    \$\begingroup\$ Copy-pasting the secret keyword is just as easy as copy-pasting the entire leaderboard. I don't think there's an actual upside to this, but it does have the potential to create a mess of epic proportions. \$\endgroup\$ – Dennis Nov 7 '15 at 21:05
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Dennis Is Bot Leaderboard that hard to type? \$\endgroup\$ – Conor O'Brien Nov 7 '15 at 21:05
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    \$\begingroup\$ It's a few more key presses than Ctrl-C, Ctrl-V. On a serious note, Bot Leaderboard is too simple; it could still be written by accident as part of a challenge. \$\endgroup\$ – Dennis Nov 7 '15 at 21:08
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Dennis As I have said, this is merely a suggested title. Don't attack it as if its the sole keyword. (And besides, having the keyword is easier than 1) searching for a post w/ the leaderboard, 2) viewing the source somehow, 3) copying the source, 4) going to your own question, 5) pasting the source.) \$\endgroup\$ – Conor O'Brien Nov 7 '15 at 21:09
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Somewhat

There are plenty of good arguments presented here against using a tag, or a simple keyword, to automatically include a leaderboard snippet.

However, at the same time, there is a huge learning curve for new users on this site:

And those are just a result of a quick search.

Possible solutions to this:

  • Add an immediate leaderboard snippet, as suggested
  • Better phrase the "Ask a Question" page, maybe with a "Helpful Links" section
  • Consolidate a lot of the above, including the Leaderboard snippet, into a "Featured" Meta post
  • Consolidate a lot of the above into our Tour
  • Other?
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  • 5
    \$\begingroup\$ The leaderboard is in no way necessary for a new user to write a successful challenge. It's a nice-to-have, and it can always be added later if someone thinks it would be a good addition for the challenge in question. (Also I don't think we can do anything about the Tour page.) \$\endgroup\$ – Martin Ender Nov 7 '15 at 21:39
  • \$\begingroup\$ @MartinBüttner it sure is helpful though... \$\endgroup\$ – Seadrus Nov 7 '15 at 21:45
  • \$\begingroup\$ @MartinBüttner Is it necessary? No. Is it representative of overarching issues facing new users of the site? Yes. Can we do something about that? Maybe. \$\endgroup\$ – AdmBorkBork Nov 7 '15 at 21:48
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    \$\begingroup\$ I don't think you've even defined what exactly about leaderboards is an issue, let alone made any argument to support the claim that it is representative of overarching issues facing new users of the site. If your position were that leaderboards confuse new users then you would be arguing in favour of eliminating them rather than auto-posting them; so I think you must be arguing that they're necessary for good quality questions. That is debatable, but I don't think there's any question that the biggest quality issue with most first questions is lack of clarity, followed by duplication. \$\endgroup\$ – Peter Taylor Nov 7 '15 at 22:23
  • \$\begingroup\$ @PeterTaylor The issue with leaderboards is one of accessibility to new users, and in that context it is indicative of a steep learning curve facing new users to the site. I fully agree that it seems the top two issues are lack of clarity and duplication, both of which could also be partially solved by smoothing the learning curve. \$\endgroup\$ – AdmBorkBork Nov 7 '15 at 22:40
  • \$\begingroup\$ So are you saying that leaderboards everywhere is a good thing because it increases accessibility, or that leaderboards are a bad thing because they increase the learning curve? \$\endgroup\$ – Peter Taylor Nov 7 '15 at 23:38
  • \$\begingroup\$ @PeterTaylor Sorry I wasn't clear. I meant that finding and implementing a leaderboard isn't very accessible to new users. In the same way that understanding how to score and format answers isn't very accessible. Or what counts as a standard loophole. Or any number of things that, strictly speaking, aren't necessary to using the site, but go a long way to using the site well, which are all buried in various places on Meta. I've been here several months, have been pretty active, and I still feel that there are huge swaths of unknown knowledge buried in Meta. \$\endgroup\$ – AdmBorkBork Nov 7 '15 at 23:46

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