Functional requests

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sivakd
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Re: Functional requests

Post by sivakd »

Here are a few suggestions for next round of improvements:

1) In the weekly problem email the text says something like

"Problem 366 will be accessible on Sat 07 Jan 2012 at 7.00 pm [Server Time]."

It would be good if the time is provided as per user preference. But if that's expensive as was mentioned before (though I believe, it can be done fast by sorting by the timezone and then sending the emails), we at least need to know Server Time as an offset of GMT.

2) In the user details provided at http://projecteuler.net/profile/[user].[png|xml] , additional summary information such as the following can be provided

a) Number of awards earned
b) Most recent problem solved in terms of the problem id (That is, if someone solves 366 and then 322, then this would only show 366).

3) The eulerians list is too long with the new scoring system and so setting a minimum total score would reduce the tail-end. For example, if a minimum of 25 is required, there would only be 73 as opposed to a total of 233 at present.

4) Since no ranking is given for the top-most level, every time there is an update the users are adhocly bouncing in the list. That's fine and understand it's by design. However, I see some people who reached to that level some 100 days back and not visited the website since then. So, may be, split this list into two, those who solved problems within last X days (may be 30 days) and those after. Don't reveal the rankings and have a single rank, but order the users with this break-down.
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hk
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Re: Functional requests

Post by hk »

sivakd wrote:Here are a few suggestions for next round of improvements:

1) In the weekly problem email the text says something like

"Problem 366 will be accessible on Sat 07 Jan 2012 at 7.00 pm [Server Time]."

It would be good if the time is provided as per user preference. But if that's expensive as was mentioned before (though I believe, it can be done fast by sorting by the timezone and then sending the emails), we at least need to know Server Time as an offset of GMT.
During the summer on the Northern Hemisphere server time is one hour ahead of GMT, during winter server time equals GMT.
Exact information can be gathered if you google on "British Summer Time"
This has been the case for several years now.
Moreover, when you look at the problems page when a new problem is imminent you will see both the time in your timezone and the server time if you took the trouble setting your time zone right.
The only problematic periods are the weekends when Britain switches between summer and winter time.
That is at the last Sunday of March and October. All countries of the European Union switch at the same date and time.
(As long as we can keep what has been achieved in the past, but you never know when Britain wants to get excentric again).


2) In the user details provided at http://projecteuler.net/profile/[user].[png|xml] , additional summary information such as the following can be provided

a) Number of awards earned
b) Most recent problem solved in terms of the problem id (That is, if someone solves 366 and then 322, then this would only show 366).
Yes it can but is it worth the trouble?
3) The eulerians list is too long with the new scoring system and so setting a minimum total score would reduce the tail-end. For example, if a minimum of 25 is required, there would only be 73 as opposed to a total of 233 at present.
The same can be obtained by only looking at the first 73, can't it?

4) Since no ranking is given for the top-most level, every time there is an update the users are adhocly bouncing in the list. That's fine and understand it's by design. However, I see some people who reached to that level some 100 days back and not visited the website since then. So, may be, split this list into two, those who solved problems within last X days (may be 30 days) and those after. Don't reveal the rankings and have a single rank, but order the users with this break-down.
When we reach 375 problems a new rank will be inserted and those no longer active will fall down to that rank.
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thundre
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Re: Functional requests

Post by thundre »

I request that new problems be mailed out to the list when they first become available.

This is the third week in a row that the server has been unable to keep up with the number of people who want to view the page.
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sivakd
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Re: Functional requests

Post by sivakd »

What is "Score Index" on the Languages page in the Statistics section and how is it computed? Would it make sense to do something similar by countries and have the countries listed as a table with some interesting statistics?
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hk
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Re: Functional requests

Post by hk »

There is applied some formula (don't ask me which) on the number of users and the percentage solved.
Then the result for the highest output is set to 100.
We're strongly against applying something similar to countries for several reasons:
-it awakens nationalism which is the source of a lot of evil in the world.
-one is born as a citizen of a country, but one chooses his programming language.
-most of all: PE is for individuals and not for the misconceptions that lead to things as Olympic Games and World Championships where people cheer for things they did not achieve themselves.
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sivakd
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Re: Functional requests

Post by sivakd »

Thanks hk.

My intention is not related to any of the bad things you think of are associated to boundaries of the countries. Also, a lot of that is personal opinion. Also, sometimes a good tool can be used for bad purposes and that doesn't mean the tool shouldn't be invented in the first place. Anyway, if the concern is so strong then the country field itself should have been not there at all.
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hk
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Re: Functional requests

Post by hk »

Perhaps it's not the time yet to prelude on all kinds of new features or whatever.
See also:
viewtopic.php?f=5&t=2609&p=28456#p28454
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sivakd
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Re: Functional requests

Post by sivakd »

Yes, by no means I am expecting to see these requests implemented immediately. I am assuming this thread is a parking lot to provide input for future designs.
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sibr
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Re: Functional requests

Post by sibr »

The SSL is giving me mixed content errors due to the mathjax scripts. After looking into it, it turns out that you can get the scripts over HTTPS by using their cloudfront URL:

https://d3eoax9i5htok0.cloudfront.net/m ... X-AMS_HTML
https://d3eoax9i5htok0.cloudfront.net/m ... MS_HTML.js
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euler
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Re: Functional requests

Post by euler »

Thanks for reminding me about that, sibr. It is something I meant to do after I recently changed MathJax to use the Content Delivery Network to serve the latest scripts.

It should now be fixed.
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sivakd
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Re: Functional requests

Post by sivakd »

Now that it's possible to use an alias or even change the username it would be good if the fastest solvers pages are dynamic.
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albert
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Functional requests

Post by albert »

I have the functional request that no change are made to the website.
Changes lately have only serve to make it less functional.

In particular the graphical embellishment to me is not worth the slowing down of the site.
In the end it is all about mathematical problems.

This is the fourth week that it takes hours before I get a peek at the problem.
I get this:
"General Error
SQL ERROR [ mysql4 ]

Too many connections [1040]

An sql error occurred while fetching this page. Please contact an administrator
if this problem persists.

"
This is of course a serious problem with the website. A user should get error 404, or just a time out.
SQL errors should go to a webmaster not to an end user.
Posting here is apparently the closest I come to contacting an administrator.

[I had also a rant about the change of the challenge to audio, but that was my own fault.
I had somehow blocked all images. I hope that nobody has had a change to read it ;-( ]

Groetjes Albert

P.S.
Oh yeah there could be a functional request.
Instead of an announcement about when the problem will (hopefully) be available, I would love to see that at the moment of
release, the problem is just mailed to those who want it. That is the same amount of mail traffic, but it would be
much less of a burden to the website.
AndreasEisele
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Re: Functional requests

Post by AndreasEisele »

albert wrote:I have the functional request that no change are made to the website.
Changes lately have only serve to make it less functional.

In particular the graphical embellishment to me is not worth the slowing down of the site.
In the end it is all about mathematical problems.

This is the fourth week that it takes hours before I get a peek at the problem.
I get this:
"General Error
SQL ERROR [ mysql4 ]

Too many connections [1040]

An sql error occurred while fetching this page. Please contact an administrator
if this problem persists.

"
This is of course a serious problem with the website. A user should get error 404, or just a time out.
SQL errors should go to a webmaster not to an end user.
Posting here is apparently the closest I come to contacting an administrator.

[unrelated comment deleted ]

Groetjes Albert

P.S.
Oh yeah there could be a functional request.
Instead of an announcement about when the problem will (hopefully) be available, I would love to see that at the moment of
release, the problem is just mailed to those who want it. That is the same amount of mail traffic, but it would be
much less of a burden to the website.
I very much second this. I tried in vain for at least two hours last night to see the latest problem until I gave up and went to bed. Now I see that the problem has been solved by 10. Did they see the problem before the collapse of the website or after its recovery?
The list of problems claims that the latest problem was published on 28 April 2012.
This is effectively not true for me, and I guess for many others.
One of the many error messages I saw when the site was down went as follows:
projecteuler wrote: Internal Server Error

The server encountered an internal error or misconfiguration and was unable
to complete your request.

Please contact the server administrator, webmaster@projecteuler.net and
inform them of the time the error occurred, and anything you might have
done that may have caused the error.

More information about this error may be available in the server error log.

Additionally, a 404 Not Found error was encountered while trying to use an
ErrorDocument to handle the request.
However, the email address webmaster@projecteuler.net does not exist, and mails sent there come back unread.

I find it a bit hard to believe that it is not possible to build this site in a way that it scales to the expected number of users, assuming that not every man on the street is eager to know the latest problem (or could there be DoS attacks involved in this?).
For a couple of weeks these problems were alleviated by making the latest problem available on a static page at wobsoft.com, which was at least a workaround that helped. Now that site has only a link back to PE, which is however completely useless when the original site is broken. Mailing the latest problem to the curious users would of course be a much better workaround.

Andreas
riemann
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Re: Functional requests

Post by riemann »

1) Mailing the latest problem would be great.

2) I don't want to make false accusations, but could it be that the problems are due to twitter-bots, like
http://twitter.com/#!/projecteulerbot
which are logging in too often to check for new entries in the fastest solvers list ?
sibr
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Re: Functional requests

Post by sibr »

Would it be possible to add the ability to search through problem threads? So if we have taken a different approach to a problem to many of the initial posters, we can search for a key word related to our method and see if anyone else has taken a similar approach?
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Lord_Farin
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Re: Functional requests

Post by Lord_Farin »

I always have lights off since I prefer dark backgrounds. This however makes for an ugly display of formulae, as on Problem 334 (View Problem).
A quick check verified that images are used to display TeX. However, here on the forums we have full-fledged TeX in dollar signs enabled. Would it be possible to implement a TeX parser for the main site as well (one which uses a dedicated TrueType font) so as to ensure a proper display of the equations in 'lights off' mode?
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thedoctar
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Re: Functional requests

Post by thedoctar »

This is a trivial request, but can we have the sorting options, ie the sort by ... drop down menu, at the top of the page?
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lsmith946
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Re: Functional requests

Post by lsmith946 »

Rather trivial again but it would be good to see which awardsI have earned rather than just the number I have earned.
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TheEvil
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Re: Functional requests

Post by TheEvil »

lsmith946 wrote:Rather trivial again but it would be good to see which awardsI have earned rather than just the number I have earned.
You can see all of them on your Progress page between the Problems page and Friends page.
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SoboLAN
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Re: Functional requests

Post by SoboLAN »

From what I've seen, most problems don't have any PDFs with elegant solutions attached to them. And those that do have such PDFs are more in the easy spectrum. What we need is the opposite: elegant solutions for the hard problems.

So here is my idea: What if, once you solve a problem, you gain access to a thread where the building of such a PDF is made and discussed ? I don't know who made the ones that are already on the site, but if this responsibility is shifted towards the community, it will free the administration from doing it themselves. And we would have a lot more of such HELPFUL PDFs.

One crucial point here: only if/when an administrator marks the PDF as complete/done/good enough, will it be published for the ones who solved the problem to see.

This idea is of course in its infancy, but I believe that it's worth to do it. This way, Project Euler would not only contain problems and answers, it will also contain the solution that gets from the problem to the answer :) .
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