We've got some pretty great challenges here. However, after a month or so, challenges get little to no activity. Since we aren't a Q&A site, we rarely get traffic via searches. I would love it if we could introduce users to high quality questions that they may not have found on their own.

I believe that some sort of Tour of PPCG would help the discoverability of our older questions (name not set in stone). This tour would consist of an ordered list of challenges, where users would aim to complete all of them

There are a couple of details that need ironing out:

  1. How we pick the questions that appear on the tour
  2. How many questions are on the tour
  3. How we present the tour (and make it visible)
  4. How/If we reward users that complete the tour

Does this sound like a good idea? If so, how should address the above details?

  • \$\begingroup\$ Are you suggesting modifying the Existing Tour Page or something else? \$\endgroup\$
    – mbomb007
    Commented May 2, 2016 at 20:24
  • 5
    \$\begingroup\$ This is unrelated to the Tour Page. \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 2, 2016 at 20:35
  • \$\begingroup\$ Gimme two hours and that neural library I found the other day... \$\endgroup\$ Commented Sep 22, 2016 at 21:49

2 Answers 2


Yes, let's do this

The implementation should be:

  1. Make a meta post where people can nominate the any challenge. People vote on challenges based on:
    1. The quality of the challenge
    2. If there is sufficient room for many distinct answers (in the same language). We want to avoid situations where identical answers are independently developed
    3. Difficulty of the challenge. The tour shouldn't be infeasibly difficult, nor trivially easy. Ideally, we'd have challenges across the entire range of difficulty.
  2. I think that 25 questions is a good amount
  3. After voting is finished, a meta post is created that links to all 25 challenges. Each of the challenges gets and edit with a link of Tour Challenge # of 25 that links back to the meta post. I believe that adding a link on the challenge is necessary because:
    1. It helps people discover the tour itself. There are people that never visit our meta, and the tour page may rarely get edited.
    2. It makes for easy navigation
  4. Finishers are added to the Tour meta post. Optionally, an answer can be put on the Tour post that highlights awesome answers from a particular finisher. It would also be awesome if there was a custom badge we could give out.

What if we do multiple tours?

Completing a tour is supposed to be a big deal. If there are a bunch of tours, then completing one of them matters less.

That said, I'm not entirely against multiple tours, but they would need to be a rare event (like once a year). Ideally, future tours would also be themed, so that each tour is standalone, ensuring that completing a tour is a big deal.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I feel like there's a problem with that implementation, because it will only show 25 old challenges, is the list meant to be renewed at some point? \$\endgroup\$
    – Katenkyo
    Commented May 3, 2016 at 6:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Katenkyo see my edit. \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 3, 2016 at 14:16
  • \$\begingroup\$ Hum, ok, I didn't think you wanted them to be a big deal like a decathlon. Looks good to me! \$\endgroup\$
    – Katenkyo
    Commented May 3, 2016 at 14:34
  • \$\begingroup\$ So maybe this could be something like Best of PPCG 2015? Like we have a meta post, nominate and vote, and then post the tour? \$\endgroup\$
    – Riker
    Commented May 3, 2016 at 15:38
  • \$\begingroup\$ This is similar to "Best of", except that we are targeting older questions. While questions from the current year would be allowed, I don't want to exclude older questions. (Also, we wouldn't have separate categories for each of the 25 spots) \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 3, 2016 at 15:41
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ The only part I disagree with is providing a bounty for finishers - I don't think that a reward is necessary. We could maybe ask nicely for a custom badge (which is more appropriate than a bounty IMO), but just being recognized as a valuable contributor in a meta post (by virtue of having finished the tour) should be reward enough. \$\endgroup\$
    – user45941
    Commented May 3, 2016 at 19:40
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Mego Good point. I was initially skeptical about including a bounty in the first place, which is why I made it a "two-fold". I edited my post :) \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 3, 2016 at 19:45
  • \$\begingroup\$ Re multiple tours, I could imagine a tour of simple challenges which people can use to take new esolangs for a ride. (Although it might also be nice to encourage people to try picking a single language for the entire main tour.) \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 3, 2016 at 20:39
  • \$\begingroup\$ For the tour, would restrictions such as using a language newer than the question be lifted? I would like to be able to go back and answer some old challenges using a newer language. (Or maybe in the header you could add a ###Tour answer, languages post-dates 04/05/16) \$\endgroup\$
    – Blue
    Commented May 4, 2016 at 21:45
  • \$\begingroup\$ @muddyfish We allow languages that were created after the post date, they just can't win. I'll definitely make that obvious on the tour post, though. \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 4, 2016 at 23:20
  • \$\begingroup\$ @NathanMerrill I mean making a tour challenge a completely different challenge from the original - as if it were posted on the day it became a tour challenge \$\endgroup\$
    – Blue
    Commented May 5, 2016 at 7:28
  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ @muddyfish I don't think that would be a good idea. Not only would they be duplicates, but splitting our answers into two different posts isn't a good idea. I'm still not sure what the motivation is: are you simply wanting to let people win with a newer language? If so, that issue seems unrelated to tours in general, and while I actually think it would be great if people could win with a newer language, its not what meta has decided. \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 5, 2016 at 12:57
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Nathanmerrill I still worded that wrong. I meant effectively resetting the time when new languages are allowed to enter. (I still think you would disagree though) \$\endgroup\$
    – Blue
    Commented May 5, 2016 at 15:46

Yes, that would be awesome!

I love the idea presented by @NathanMerrill, and his approache overall. But I think an other point of view would not harm.

I think we should focus on re-discovering old-challenges, going with the principle that we have done some great work untill now, and most of our challenge are of great quality.

I see this challenge tour as something that will change with time, proposing new challenge on a monthly/bimonthly basis.

The implementation of such a tour would be

  1. Pick 10-15 challenges

    1. pick challenges from a lot of different tags (to provide content for every needs)

    2. This part could be done with a script, the returned question could then be reviewed to see if they are good enough

    3. It could also be handpicked, but would then require a vote for each rotation, making it happens on a quaterly basis would then be better

  2. Create a meta post containing this 10-15 challenges

    1. name this post Challenge Tour n°#

    2. pin it so it can be seen on the main site

I don't think we need any kind of reward for the people answering these challenge, having the opportunity to discover some new challenges is rewarding in itself.

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ I don't think the "random" part would work. These should be good, handpicked challenges that are a ideal mix of the site. I think you mean a good mix, not "random". \$\endgroup\$
    – Riker
    Commented May 3, 2016 at 15:39
  • \$\begingroup\$ @EᴀsᴛᴇʀʟʏIʀᴋ I meant random because I see this tour as a way to promote old challenge, on a rotation basis. The problem with picking them by hand, is the time it costs: how much time does the community will need to select them each months? \$\endgroup\$
    – Katenkyo
    Commented May 4, 2016 at 6:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ @EᴀsᴛᴇʀʟʏIʀᴋ with that said, I updated my post to reflect the possibility of handpicking them \$\endgroup\$
    – Katenkyo
    Commented May 4, 2016 at 6:47

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