224 votes

How can we help users who are put off by the use of golfing languages?

Stop upvoting trivial solutions It's easy to imagine why a new user would be frustrated when the highest-voted answer is a 3-byte solution in a golfing language with a built-in that nearly solves the ...
xnor's user avatar
  • 145k
126 votes

Things to avoid when writing challenges

Cumbersome I/O formats Generally, allow flexible input and output formats. People want to write code to do your task of, say, composing permutations, not reading/writing numbers in a particular ...
xnor's user avatar
  • 145k
101 votes

I'm stepping down

UPDATE (since 2019-10-30): So, it looks like a test is currently being ran. I'm not sure if it will have good results, but it surely looks like a big step towards the goal that finally needs to be ...
Erik the Outgolfer's user avatar
90 votes

Congratulations, you're graduating!

Needless to say this is fantastic news. I'd just like to take a moment to say THANK YOU both to the Stack Exchange Community Team as well as to our wonderful community. Together we've built ...
Alex A.'s user avatar
  • 24.6k
89 votes

Is a "built-in" considered to be so for all challenges it CAN solve, or only the one it is DESIGNED to solve?

Stop banning built-ins It has become sort of a meme at this point, where new challenge posters repeat it as blindly as they repeat “this is code-golf; shortest answer (in bytes) wins”. When asked, ...
Lynn's user avatar
  • 68.2k
87 votes

We're not a Q&A site. But what should be done about it?

Can we get a custom Tour page? The most important part of the onboarding experience for new users (especially those who don't arrive via other sites from the network) is the tour page. Moderators can ...
Martin Ender's user avatar
85 votes

Things to avoid when writing challenges

Rules inferred from test cases Test cases are examples for people to check their understanding of the spec and the correctness of their code. They should not replace an explanation of how the output ...
xnor's user avatar
  • 145k
82 votes

Default for Code Golf: Input/Output methods

Functions may take multiple arguments via currying For some functional programming languages like Haskell this is actually necessary, because only single-argument functions exist and functions with ...
82 votes

Community Promotion Ads - 2017

Dennis's user avatar
  • 210k
79 votes

Things to avoid when writing challenges

Making assumptions about language features Unless you're writing a language-specific challenge, avoid terms specific to some class of languages, because these might not make sense for other languages ...
xnor's user avatar
  • 145k
76 votes

Things to avoid when writing challenges

Bonuses in code golf Digital Trauma wrote an answer about this, but I have harsher views on bonuses, so I'm posting to let people vote separately. Bonuses in code golf say things like "-30% of your ...
xnor's user avatar
  • 145k
75 votes

Things to avoid when writing challenges

Changing the challenge in the comments If something was unspecified in your challenge, or if you've decided to make a change to the challenge (Such as to close a loophole), don't just leave a comment....
isaacg's user avatar
  • 42.1k
74 votes

Graduation Design Ideas

No relation to the sport golf There should be nothing related to actual golf in the design. Our name may make for good puns, but it would be way too cheesy to be used.
Maltysen's user avatar
  • 25.7k
74 votes

Things to avoid when writing challenges

Do X without Y This isn't always bad, but it's been a particular trap for beginners, so be careful. In the past, there were popular questions about doing a simple task but with the obvious method ...
xnor's user avatar
  • 145k
71 votes

Things to avoid when writing challenges

Explicitly disallowing or disadvantaging arbitrary (classes of) languages This has become much rarer recently, but the occasional challenge by a new user still includes it, so here as an answer to ...
Martin Ender's user avatar
71 votes

We're not a Q&A site. But what should be done about it?

Built-in support for scores and leaderboards The vast majority of PPCG challenges involve minimizing or maximizing the score of a solution, usually the byte count of a program. As it currently stands,...
Zgarb's user avatar
  • 42.6k
68 votes

Congratulations! Your site design is now live!

With the new site design, unvisited links are green, whereas visited links are very dark green, almost black: The almost black color for visited links makes them look as if there is no link. There's ...
Luis Mendo's user avatar
  • 104k
66 votes

Community Promotion Ads - 2017

Peter Taylor's user avatar
  • 43.1k
66 votes

Let's allow newer languages/versions for older challenges

Trust the community and add a standard loophole I think the community can handle the add-a-builtin problem (I may be very wrong). I think that if someone adds a feature to their language that is ...
MD XF's user avatar
  • 13.8k
65 votes

A farewell to moderation

It's been an absolute pleasure to moderate PPCG at your side. Whether I needed a second opinion on some moderation issue, help with some Julia code, or just a sympathetic ear, you've been there for me ...
Dennis's user avatar
  • 210k
63 votes

Things to avoid when writing challenges

Putting test cases in a hard to use format Supplying test cases is always a good idea, but people are more likely to use them (and thus have better tested code) if they can easily be copied and pasted ...
Calvin's Hobbies's user avatar
63 votes

We're not a Q&A site. But what should be done about it?

Remove the "you already have an answer" pop-up When you post an answer on a question where you have already posted an answer, a pop-up appears asking you if you really want to do this and ...
a spaghetto's user avatar
  • 11.2k
63 votes

Community Promotion Ads - 2018

Dennis's user avatar
  • 210k
62 votes

Loopholes that are forbidden by default

Abusing native number types to trivialize a problem It is common practice to restrict challenges to cases where input, output and/or intermediate values of the algorithm of choice fit into the ...
62 votes

Graduation Design Ideas

Graduation Design Userscript A collaborative graduation user-script has been put together. Github Repo Pictures Main Question: Leaderboard: Auto TIO Execution: Meta: Chat: Color Scheme: If ...
61 votes

We're not a Q&A site. But what should be done about it?

s/question/challenge/g This is pretty big and this might actually be a lot of effort on SE's part, but I think the overall impression of this being a Q&A site would be greatly reduced if the site ...
Martin Ender's user avatar
60 votes

What should this site be called now that it's getting a design?

Code Golf with a subtitle The site's main purpose is code golf, but not its only purpose (really, this is a site about competitive programming in general, it's just that code golf is by far the most ...
ais523 - high effort answers's user avatar
59 votes

Things to avoid when writing challenges

Requiring minimum scores In short, don't post a code golf that says "Your code has to be shorter than 100 bytes" (the same applies to any other winning criterion). The usual motivation is that the ...
Martin Ender's user avatar
59 votes
Accepted

When can APL characters be counted as 1 byte each?

GNU APL and ngn/apl use UTF-8, so use a byte counting tool. NARS2000 only uses UCS-2, so 2 bytes per character. IBM's APL2 is the only modern APL that natively supports APL EBCDIC, so 1 byte per ...
Adám's user avatar
  • 30k
59 votes

How can we help users who are put off by the use of golfing languages?

What SE could do for us... One of the most popular suggestions from "We're not a Q&A site, but what should be done about it?" is to add software support for answer metadata (mainly scores and ...
Martin Ender's user avatar

Only top scored, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible