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 what to change 
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Posted on: Tue Oct 02, 2012 10:34 pm




Posts: 500
Location: Ladysmith, BC, Canada
Joined: Fri May 13, 2011 1:37 am
Post Re: what to change
All great ideas before this post......I just wanted to say I still "hate" Tuesdays because I can never get the 9x9 nor the bit/wise puzzles and also have trouble with the 10x10's on occasion......but I do like the twins however small or big they are and have noticed that the 4x4 difficult is a bit harder as are some of the 5x5 difficult ones......but do like, generally, the format that already exists (except of course TUESDAY) [thumbup]


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Posted on: Tue Oct 02, 2012 11:43 pm




Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2012 3:18 pm
Post Re: what to change
One either plays for points, or plays for fun. If one plays for points (and ranking) then putting an upper limit for the points is not a good solution - especially since there is a limit to the extra points you can make (where extra means: books, bonus, timed) which decrease in number while one gets older on the site. If one plays for fun, decreasing the number of puzzles will lower the enthusiasm, as one has fewer to choose from.
I would suggest a more "attractive" archive - easier to search through, made available only for registered users - where it would be easier to search for a certain type of puzzles, and maybe even allow for printing. Then whoever likes a certain type of puzzle, will come from time to time to see what is new, maybe print a few and solve them with friends or relatives on the road, in vacation, etc.
Funny daily quotations, or links to "educative" articles would convince user to come more often just for relaxation - give the feeling of a community focused on improving, not competing for a rank. And maybe it shouldn't necessarily e daily, even weekly would be enough.


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Posted on: Wed Oct 03, 2012 1:37 am




Posts: 175
Joined: Fri May 13, 2011 2:11 am
Post Re: what to change
pnm wrote:
jake4 wrote:
There's usually not much difference between the Medium and Difficult 4x4


Since Oct. 1, the 4x4 difficult should be a bit harder.

This was when you made it possible for cages to be formed in a manner of drawing a single line, right?

They've gotten different, but 4x4 are so limited that you really can't write a truly difficult one.


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Posted on: Wed Oct 03, 2012 4:28 am




Posts: 116
Joined: Sat May 14, 2011 3:18 am
Post Re: what to change
pnm wrote:
pharosian wrote:
Before you do anything drastic, would it be possible for you to try to find out why people are leaving the site? Maybe put a survey together and send it to everyone who participated regularly for at least a month (for example) but who hasn't returned to the site in the past 30 days.

Good idea, thanks :-)

So far I'm leaning towards both:
- remove puzzles, and
- daily points limit

The daily limit should be shown more clearly on the main page.

So far, I've heard several people say, "don't reduce the number of puzzles," and I haven't heard a single voice in favor of it... so why do you think reducing the number would be good for increasing traffic?

And I'll second rickt's observation that the previous attempt at a points limit didn't work out that well. [glare]

Until you know why people are leaving the site, it doesn't make sense to make changes that will upset the ones who are still here.... does it?


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Posted on: Wed Oct 03, 2012 5:22 am




Posts: 422
Location: Canada
Joined: Fri May 13, 2011 2:43 am
Post Re: what to change
Well I agree with pharosian and others who say that it's probably not good to change things too quickly just because a few people said this or that.

But as for voicing... I would be in favour of reducing the number of puzzles. Maybe I just didn't say it clearly enough? Points limit didn't seem to work before so maybe that might not be the way to go. But again, I'm not sure why it didn't work before.

As for people coming here either for fun or ranking, I don't see any point in coming here if there is no fun. It's such a waste of time to do something that's not that enjoyable just to say you are high on the rankings.

Anyway, I'm still trying to figure myself out... what I really want and what I'm going to do about it.

What would happen if there were just too many puzzles in a day that practically nobody would be able to complete them all and they all had points... then I wonder how many/which ones I would do. Hmmm...


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Posted on: Wed Oct 03, 2012 5:37 am




Posts: 43
Location: Tacoma, WA, USA
Joined: Fri May 13, 2011 4:03 am
Post Re: what to change
Number of puzzles. I’ve gone back and forth in my mind about the number of puzzles. I’m another who can’t do all of them anymore – not enough hours in the day.

But I would not reduce the number of puzzles. I think the variety is a great thing. Now that I’ve been liberated from the tyranny of the rankings (by the sheer impossibility of doing enough puzzles to keep up), I enjoy it more because I choose only the ones I enjoy and only the number of puzzles that the day’s schedule allows. Those are the larger ones for me, but I’m sure different people enjoy different combinations of puzzles. I would keep all those options as long as it’s feasible to generate them every day.

I would definitely not get rid of the Wednesday (I think it’s on Wednesday – I’m not in Italy; happens Tuesday afternoon here) 7x7 all-subtraction. That’s a wonderful puzzle, in my top four or five formats. (At the top of my list is the Tuesday 9x9 quadrant puzzle. Endlessly intriguing.) And I would keep the K-Sudokus but make the Difficult tougher some of the time.

Scoring/ranking system(s). The ranking system has been imperfect from the start because the playing field is not level – different people have always had different numbers of points available to them, even before the subscription system. The discrepancies have increased at times, decreased at others, but they continue to exist.

My solution – I would have three ranking systems.

1. The timed puzzles would have their own ranking system. That’s just my bias against the timed puzzles. They’re a whole different sport than calcudoku or K-Sudoku from my perspective. That ranking system would be designed however the timed puzzle fans want it, or at least whatever they can convince Patrick to do.

2. The second ranking system would be for the masochists who do as many puzzles as possible. Include all the points for all the puzzles (except timed puzzles, which are in System #1, above) and give the 7 day total and 30 day average.

3. The third ranking system would be a hybrid for people at the higher skill levels who also want to pay attention to the other parts of their lives. There would be something like – I’ll pick a number – 12 puzzles designated each day for this ranking system. I’ll call them the Earmarked Puzzles for lack of a better name off the top of my head. It would be a shifting combination of sizes and formats each day.

They would be the tougher puzzles from the Difficults in the larger sizes, including the K-Sudokus, and the bitwise or operator and the modulo operator. As people have suggested I’d include a 16x16 occasionally; also an 11x11. I would increase the difficulty of some of the puzzles beyond the ones that currently appear to avoid having all the experts solve all of the puzzles … get at least a little separation at the top.

This system would have the 7 and 30 day numbers for people's scores on (only) the Earmarked Puzzles.


My brain’s worn out. Where’s the send button?


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Posted on: Wed Oct 03, 2012 7:18 am




Posts: 98
Joined: Fri May 13, 2011 12:48 am
Post Re: what to change
sneaklyfox wrote:
Well I agree with pharosian and others who say that it's probably not good to change things too quickly just because a few people said this or that.

But as for voicing... I would be in favour of reducing the number of puzzles. Maybe I just didn't say it clearly enough? Points limit didn't seem to work before so maybe that might not be the way to go. But again, I'm not sure why it didn't work before.

As for people coming here either for fun or ranking, I don't see any point in coming here if there is no fun. It's such a waste of time to do something that's not that enjoyable just to say you are high on the rankings.

Anyway, I'm still trying to figure myself out... what I really want and what I'm going to do about it.

What would happen if there were just too many puzzles in a day that practically nobody would be able to complete them all and they all had points... then I wonder how many/which ones I would do. Hmmm...


Yes,I am already suffering from burnout. I want to finish all the puzzles in a day, but I also want to do other things... On days that I want to do more calkudoku there is always the book puzzles.


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Posted on: Sat Oct 06, 2012 1:39 am




Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2012 7:52 am
Post Re: what to change
I guess for me it's the other way around. I like more puzzles. In fact, I'd prefer puzzles sizes 4-10 in all 3 difficulty levels, twins and negatives every day. The main reason I played more, is because I could get big twins (bonus puzzles), now that's it's once a month or so (good luck scoring 500 points with fewer puzzles) -- I, guess, won't play anymore...
So, for people like I am -- this will raise attrition.


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Posted on: Sun Oct 07, 2012 4:46 pm




Posts: 3
Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2011 8:01 pm
Post Re: what to change
I also am going to miss the big twins since the bonuses are much more spaced out.


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Posted on: Sun Oct 07, 2012 8:27 pm




Posts: 2215
Joined: Thu May 12, 2011 11:58 pm
Post Re: what to change
bscott600 wrote:
I also am going to miss the big twins since the bonuses are much more spaced out.

The solution for this could be to replace
one of the regular large puzzles with
a weekly large twin. What size should it be?

Patrick


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