A coding competition

I think the easiest way to confirm votes, rather than checking to see if its coming from a Pandora or by checking the serial codes, would be to use the order code - this would allow both people who have their pandora and people who have ordered but not yet gotten it yet to vote, it would be less predictable than a serial code, and it may even convince people who were going to order at some point to order before the competition ended. this is of course dependant on people having saved their order emails from years ago, but I imagine the vast majority of people have - if not, this might result in a huge email overflow for Craig and ED
Should there be a couple of parallel competitions:

  1. Polishing user interface: Make Pandora use slicker and more efficient e.g. tidying up settings dialogs, launcher applications
  2. Polishing innards: e.g. making some SDIO drivers work, optimizing ports of things.
  3. New Games: New sorts of game-play, complete updates and re-writes of games
  4. New Apps: New-write useful tools for the pandora

Some things could fit into more than one of these, for example, a tool that handled detailed status and diagnostic reports from the Pandora's hardware would cover both #2 and #4.
Aah! Simplicity! <_< :rolleyes: :D
Right, we should have a number of parallel competitions ... maybe one for each entry, just to be sure. And to make sure the votes are 100% secure, and only people who own a Pandora vote, and to make sure there is only one vote per person, ED and Craig will have to travel around the world and personally pick up the votes from each of their customers. To ensure neither of them can cheat on us, we need sealed voting boxes, and we need to elect a third person who will be the only one that can open the box.

To elect that person, I guess we need someone else (to be elected as well) to travel the world and personally collect votes in a sealed voting box, and ... ... ... oh-oh ... :wacko:

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We can keep an eye on forum polls - cheaters are easy to spot for various reasons. ;) Keep it simple, guys, keep it simple.
Yes, that compo is still planned to happen :)

It will start and be announced when the first prototype unit is finished - and will end end of January, when the new Pandoras will be delivered :)
That timeframe is way too short for anything useful and remotely finished to be produced.

And you don't want unfinished stuff to enter or win there, it will never get finished or will take a very long time, just have a look at past competitions.

Competitions are very good to spark contribution, creativity and motivation, people will get off their asses to produce awesome stuff. But the minute the competition is over that will be gone, because they took some extra time off during the compo to get stuff done and have no reason to afterwards.

That's not even intended malice, that's just how we work, can't really blame anyone for it.

Additionally there will be holidays in-between (maybe Christmas, New Year, The Three Saints, etc.), many probably don't want to or cannot work during that.

Bottom line, think about extending the deadline (which is not even fixed yet, I know ;) ), I like the idea of starting when more Pandoras have been delivered for obvious reasons.

Apart from that I am happy something will get started. As always, if you are in need of help, ED, feel free to contact me.
This might actually sound a bit selfish, but it would be good to know before the competition who is working on what, wouldnt be too good for Pandora owners to have to many programers working on the same emulator with diferent variants.

Maybe there should be a limit of say 2 people working on the same thing.

I also agree with foxblock in not making a short deadline, if not we will end up with tired programers and not very good results.

Greetings and big admiration to all the coders that make the Pandora software posible. :)
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Nice, this is quite some feedback. So, to sum my opinion up:

- I agree with what's been said about the timespan: One month is probably way to little time for real results. I'd much rather tend to 3 monthes, or even 4.

- I would keep the voting simple: A community poll.

- There should be multiple categories, like Hombrew, Emulators and misc. (like ports, system polishs etc.)

- Let the people donate money to one price pool, then allocate it to the categories in equal parts.

- Start it soon, preferentially in early January so that is running when the big rush of pandoras breaks free. I think this would make sense to get people who get their pandora to play around with coding immediately, to get a little "euphoric wave" about it again instead waiting until all are delivered and nothing really happens in the meantime.

Well, just what I think :)
6 months seems too much to me. The more time you give people, the more they procrastinate. I would likely make it less than 4 months.

This may be wacky, but perhaps 6 months with a 3 month check-in? After 3 months, devs make preliminary releases and users vote on which is best so far, or shows the most promise. Some small prizes are awarded, then they take another 3 months to finish the project off, whereupon the real votes and prizes happen. It gives devs something to work towards and extra feedback relatively early on.
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If you're going to have a period longer than say 3 months for the competition, I'd suggest having a vote part-way through for the 'most promising' entry. This would help to maintain interest in the comptetition from the point of view of both the developers and 'spectators'.
Yes, that sounds like a good idea as I know from personal experience one tends to start late and to overestimate oneself.

Btw, about the starting date, I you probably want to start as early as possible, but starting in January would put the competition right on exams in most of German universities (probably similar elsewhere).

Mabye consider starting in March or something like that, by then most (all) people should have their Pandora, too.
In America, all of our college's finals have already happened. Next time around will be in May.