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Mon 14 Jun 10 #1 
Doctor Factenstein
Evil Genius


Inter-player challenges? Well, that's just another way of saying "brainoffs" I guess.

Unfortunately , this isn't a suggestion, it's more of a brainstorm.

I've noticed that these days there aren't a great deal of brainoffs being sent by players. There are the official ones sent out by Factacular (the daily challenges) and there are the challenges sent as part of the various tournaments but not a great deal which are started manually (maybe ten per day at most).

Personally, I think this is a shame. My introduction to the site came with a brainoff out of the blue from TeaBag and perhaps, without the personal touches I might not have stuck around. Obviously, I can send more challenges than I do and everyone else could chip in as well...

However, what I really wanted was to see if there were any suggestions which could make sending challenges a more attractive option?


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Tue 15 Jun 10 #2 
kevg
The Grumpinator

hate to say it but a weekly/monthly challenger of the week/month award ??


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Wed 16 Jun 10 #3 
scratch
Contributor

Nakul.


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Wed 16 Jun 10 #4 
scratch
Contributor

I'm also brainstorming. I wonder whether it has something to do with the dailies plus any tournament-generated challenges providing plenty for a person to do for the day. It takes more effort to send than to receive one, path of least resistance sort of thing.
I'm not making value judgements - I'm just talking here.


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Wed 16 Jun 10 #5 
Doctor Factenstein
Evil Genius

Sure - talking's good.

I agree that the tournaments are at least partly "to blame" in this and to some degree I regret making tournaments easier to run because they have, perhaps, taken away from the simple person-to-person interaction. I'm not going to advocate stopping tournaments, though, if they're something people enjoy. :)

And yes, it does take more effort to send a challenge than to receive one - and I think that's something which we could, possibly, address. At the moment, for example, it's quite awkward to send a challenge on a specific topic. The sheer number of topics now in the Factopedia means that the drop-down list of them used to choose a topic on the challenge page is bloated and difficult to use. You have the alternative of locating the topic first in the Factopedia and then opting to challenge friends, of course, but that's not necessarily intuitive.

So, yeah, I think it could be possible to make that process simpler - taking some of the effort out of sending a brainoff.

The other thing I was thinking of was allowing people to select more than one topic for a challenge. For example, USS Palladin might enjoy sending a challenge to people which included all the Flags topics plus Roundels. Or maybe someone would enjoy a combination of Celebrity Children and Pope's Real Names...who knows?. Perhaps having the ability to tailor the contents of a brainoff would make sending them more rewarding?

Of course, if that happened then sending a combination challenge would take more effort - and we're back to that path of least resistance. To counter that, with or without multiple-topic challenges, we could add a list of recent (or favourite) topics to a user's page. So, if you spent a few minutes setting up a challenge with your personal preferences of 20 different topics, you could then go back to that again and again without having to go back through the set-up. Or, of course, it could just be an easy place to find the single topic challenges you prefer.

As for a XXXXly challenger of the week, that could be an incentive for some. The only trick there is to avoid creating a problem with "spam" challenges, where people are sending out challenges at random just to get their name on a virtual noticeboard. That could be done by only counting challenges where a certain number of people actually played, maybe?

Anyway, like I said - talking is good, even if I've just done way too much of it.


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Wed 16 Jun 10 #6 
Doctor Factenstein
Evil Genius

Actually kev - what do you think about changing titles?

So, rather than just having Member/Contributor, people get titles which indicate just how much they've sent out?


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Wed 16 Jun 10 #7 
JMK
Editor

I think people have just got out of the habit of sending challenges. Some people who used to send a lot of challenges have either left the site or for a variety of non-Facta related reasons have been unable to send as many. The more challenges you get the more you are likely to send I find.

Just kick-starting it like you did the other day Stu is likely to help, hopefully the momentum will keep going. I wouldn't really like to see a challengers' award, don't really want to receive a whole heap of challenges from people who are just trying for quantity, it is the interaction within a challenge that I like and if they are being sent in bulk then that is less likely to happen. There have been people in the past (Scratch's one word post said it all there) who have sent numerous challenges which were hard to cope with.

Of course making it easier to challenge would help as well. Certainly sending anything other than a random is not a simple matter at the moment if you are sending out several challenges.


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Wed 16 Jun 10 #8 
kevg
The Grumpinator

Challenges rated by participants and chat generated ?? Thing is , some numpty will just post enjoy 6 times then. Whilst I think the only way to get people to challenge is to offer a namecheck at end of month we all know some will sidestep the basic reason just to get their name in lights.
Luckily I'm shy and retiring so that won't bother me, however, one reason why I don't send many challenges is because of "what he said". It's sometimes just too much effort to find an interesting subject to challenge on. So anything that will make that easier will be good.
Change of titles is good. I know some people have been agitating for that cos they feel they put more into the site than others. Which is true, but those who agitatate don't do as much as others who quietly get on with it so which titles we use will probably result in hours of arguement. Which is good.
I'll settle for Supreme Overlord if that's alright ??


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Thu 17 Jun 10 #9 
scratch
Contributor

What do you think of something along the lines of a graph on each member's profile and and a ranking page for each month (the way fact totals are used)? Then you can see how many challenges you have sent over time and you know how I love bar graphs (more than pie charts but not as much as line graphs). I think it would be a more subtle approach. After all, shouldn't the reward of spending time here be the time spent here?
For example, shortbreadforme27 is leading this month's fact total for June. Currently. Last month it was Drat. saguingoira (naturally) is the all-time leader.
By the way, congratulations to each of you.
So, there is a page that says each one of them is the best - which they can then download, print and frame at their convenience. There are other rankings as well, so it's not much of a mental stretch even for me to imagine one for challenges sent.
Technical advice welcome.


Oh - and I'm all for making sending challenges easier. Combining subjects in challenges would be good too.


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Thu 17 Jun 10 #10 
kevg
The Grumpinator

I can do framing !!


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Thu 17 Jun 10 #11 
cthulu
Contributor

We're all worthless and lazy.


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Thu 17 Jun 10 #12 
scratch
Contributor

I just came here to post that.

But really I was going to say that it would be nice if there were a way to know who sent a brainoff without checking your email or going back in through the forums. So you know who to thank.


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Thu 17 Jun 10 #13 
cthulu
Contributor

Or who to avoid...?


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