What Did You Think About the Compo ?

What was your overall opinion of the Compo ?

  • Very positive

    Votes: 10 38.5%
  • Positive

    Votes: 13 50.0%
  • So-so

    Votes: 2 7.7%
  • Negative

    Votes: 1 3.8%
  • Very Negative

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    26

ekianjo

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Since the Competition is mostly over now, I'd like to get some feedback from everyone involved (community + participants) on how it went, to better understand if you liked it and what worked/did not work. Please vote and provide some insightful comments if you can ! Hopefully (if i'm involved in organizing one in the future), I'll try to improve on this first one I organized.

Thanks!

PS: Mods, please pin this thread :)
 
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ingoreis

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I thank you that you letting me in a last Minute Entry.

All you made was fine and the Reports on the Pandoralive Site are good too ;)

From my Side,nothing that you can make better ;)

Good Job with all,thx ;)
 

foxblock

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First of all this compo worked well, just like the past ones.

The organisation and prices were good and the chosen timeframe seemed optimal.

The categories worked well, although it was somewhat hard to judge what threshold a "significant" improvement has to reach.

The released apps for the most part are decent. In contrast to the past compos we did not have that one "killer" release, but you can't always hope for that (well it almost happened anyway...)

My number one complaint is also the same though: There was little to no communication about the compo, which is also reflected in the very low number of votes (just like in the past).

The benchmark for this to me still is the riot compo ( http://www.riotdigital.com/ttcc2011/?page=Blog ). Uni did a great job on the blog back then, interviewing participants, writing blog posts about the entries in production, acquiring sponsors (!), making a video about the winners, etc.

We tried to do this with PandoraPress and ekijano posted about a few entries on Pandoralive, but this never really covered the whole competition from start to finish and you lose peoples interest in the process.

I know how much time writing articles consumes (it takes longer than you think, always) and it can hardly be done by one man, but with an active community like this I think a team of writers could be found, who each cover one category or one type of article (interviews, reviews, spotlights, weekly progress updates, etc.).

Additionally not everyone reads the boards or blogs. There could be a banner on the repo linking to the compo forum, there could be a "compo" section on the repo and a spotlight showing all entries after release (now they will just get buried in new regular releases).

There could be a banner on the forum, since even if you watch this place you might very easily miss that there is a compo going on.

In a distant future you might even be able to vote for applications right from the application/repo/PND-manager...

Just anything that makes people aware and links to the appropriate starting page for the competition.

This will generate more interest, more votes and maybe even an incentive for entrants to try harder, since they know many eyes are watching and judging. (To me knowing many people will use my app is a bigger incentive than a little bit of money anyway)

It might help, it might not, at least I would like to see one compo who brings developers and users closer together through the coverage. I think that would be interesting and beneficial for both sides.

Apart from that: good work, thanks a lot for putting the time in and thanks to everyone who donated and submitted entries!
 

_wb_

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Finding good categories is hard. The problem with "significant improvement" is that it covers a lot of things: improved ported applications, improved ported games, improved original games, improved original applications, improved packaging. Comparing such different things is tricky, comparing the "improvement delta" instead of the thing itself is also tricky, and the combination of both is very tricky.

What I don't really like about these competitions is that they encourage private development and postponing the release until a compo is announced. I think it would be better to do something like the Oscars: have some nomination process to find the best releases of the past year, and then some voting process to find, say, the best PNDs of 2014.

Of course you can still try to influence things by releasing awesome updates of your stuff during the nomination and/or voting phase.

One advantage of that approach is that you don't necessarily have to come up with categories beforehand; you can wait until after the nominations to come up with appropriate categories that have a good amount of nominations per category (not too many, not too few).
 

ekianjo

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Foxblock, thanks a lot for the detailed comments, I agree with your suggestions as well - we could have done a better job on the communication side. Excellent suggestions you have there, and I hope we will learn for the next compos. And as you mentioned it cannot be handled by "one man" so we really need a small team on the communication front. 
 

ekianjo

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What I don't really like about these competitions is that they encourage private development and postponing the release until a compo is announced. I think it would be better to do something like the Oscars: have some nomination process to find the best releases of the past year, and then some voting process to find, say, the best PNDs of 2014. Of course you can still try to influence things by releasing awesome updates of your stuff during the nomination and/or voting phase.
Not necessarily, unless you know in advance that a compo will be held. And for most of my entries, the work started after the compo was announced and not before, and I assume this was the case for many people too.

The goal of the compo was clearly to bring "new" things and I think, as one objective, it was successful since there were many entries in new Pandora Use and New Ported Games categories. You can't really force that unless you have a competition, you can see there was much more activity during the compo to make stuff happen vs the usual repo activity - so i think a compo can have positive influence. 
 

foxblock

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I like the "best PNDs of the year awards" idea.

Could easily expand this to include "best/most active dev", "most helpful user", etc., too.
 

Ziz

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As mentioned before I wanted to wait until the votings of the jury before posting my opinion about the competition. However the jury voting seems to be quite finished as the result will be shown tomorrow (I am quite excited :D ), so I think I can add my 2 cents.

First of all thanks for the competition and thanks to all voters. It made fun. However, some things grinds my gears a bit. Lets start with the things you already mentioned in your poll of this thread.

"Were the categories appropriate?"

In my opinion: Not really. The "original game", "new pandora use" and "new ported game" category worked well. You could discuss, whether it make sense to have a category just for ported games and not for ported applications in general, but this may lead to the same problem as I have with the remaining category. I really liked the idea of "new pandora use". However I think the "Significant improvement" category didn't work. We had a game vs. an image viewer vs. OS utilities vs. a game collection. I think it is QUITE hard to vote between these kinds of applications. I think it doesn't really differ, whether I make a new unfinished game or finish/improve an old game. In fact the last point makes more work and it is much harder to find motivation for this. So my game would have fit better in "Original game", PIV and Linux-SWAT's work would be better in a general "Original Application" category and QEMU would have fit best in the "Ported application" category. Furthermore I am still unsure, whether the QEMU package even fits to the "significant improvement" category at all.

"Did it make you feel the Pandora was very much Alive?"

Absolutely! We had quite much entries, I think that speaks for ALIVE! However the original work is getting fewer. Only 4 original games?

"Communication about the entries"

Foxblock already said a lot about this, but I want to highlight the RIOT digital competition, which is really the goal to achieve, too! Especially the blog posts were very motivating. I know, Ekianjo gave us all the possibility to advertise for our own project in his blog, but not everybody has the talent to write. Furthermore me or Ingo have a very basic English, so it would be very hard to make a blog post, which would attract voters.

"More entries/participants"
No, I think there were enough entries, maybe except the original game category, but this is a bit my own fault, too. If I would have finished more of my open projects I would have started a new game, too. ;)

"More time for the compo"
There was plenty of time. In fact I don't really understand, why some participants needed even more time to finish they work and got it. If you have problems with dead lines, start earlier!

"Better prizes"
The prices are really awesome!

"Better organization"
All the things I try to mention are meant to organize the next competition better. I hope you don't take it personal, Ekianjo. You did a good job and I hope my input helps you and other people on the board to make the next competition even better.  ;)

"Notaz in the compo"

Hell no! I want to win! :D

Now I have some suggestions and critics, that didn't fit well in the poll.

The voting

I didn't like it. I don't think, that one vote per poll is good to determine the best entry. I like the "3 points, 2 points, 1 points"-system. I think we wouldn't have such a barely result then. Many people voted tactical instead of for the best™ entry. Furthermore I didn't like, that the voting started right after the competition. I think a week break as test time before the voting starts and the possibility to fix crashing bugs and maybe to write some blog posts in the official competition blog would be neat. I want people to take their time trying out the entries, discussing them, judging them, maybe even changing their opinions in the discussion process. Not fire it up for a few minutes, vote and forget about the competition afterwards.

The jury

I don't really get, why we need one. If two entries got the second place, lets just split the pot, which would mean for this competition: 75€ voucher for both second places and the same for paypal. If two (or more) entries fight for the third price, let's not through one entry out of the wining top three, let's just split the pot again, e.g. two 25€ vouchers instead of one 50€ voucher. The community decided, we should accept the result and deal with it.

At last a point, for which I can't find the reason. In competitions so far some users wrote really helpful comments about every entry. I miss this somehow. Does the community start to loose active members, who like to write helpful reviews?

I hope I didn't forget anything. ;)

greetings, Ziz
 
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foxblock

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The voting I didn't like it. I don't think, that one vote per poll is good to determine the best entry. I like the "3 points, 2 points, 1 points"-system. I think we wouldn't have such a barely result then. Many people voted tactical instead of for the best™ entry. Furthermore I didn't like, that the voting started right after the competition. I think a week break as test time before the voting starts and the possibility to fix crashing bugs and maybe to write some blog posts in the official competition blog would be neat. I want people to take their time trying out the entries, discussing them, judging them, maybe even changing their opinions in the discussion process. Not fire it up for a few minutes, vote and forget about the competition afterwards.
I agree, it was very hard to only place one vote in certain categories (especially when you have to decide between some drastically different apps and genres - see "significant improvement").

The voting process certainly wasn't as smooth as it could have been and I agree for a competition like this we need to find a way to encourage discussion about entries (which also shows the developers people care about their work).

I am not sure how to handle the "significant improvement" category. On the one hand I liked encouraging developers to take a second look at their published work on the other hand it is hard to compare different types of apps in one category.

It does not seem practical to also split this into three (emulator, software, games) or even just two categories. I liked only having 4 categories.
 

pmprog

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I agree that "Significant Improvement" was an iffy category, but otherwise thought it went well. Just hope next time I can actually get something made and released

Edit: One thing I was a bit confused on - Beef's uPIM - It's kind of half disabled unless you "donate". To what level does this get voted for? The plain release or the donators version?
 
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commander-beef

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I agree that "Significant Improvement" was an iffy category, but otherwise thought it went well. Just hope next time I can actually get something made and released


Edit: One thing I was a bit confused on - Beef's uPIM - It's kind of half disabled unless you "donate". To what level does this get voted for? The plain release or the donators version?
Mainly only saving is disabled, so you can test it in many ways , but you'll not save it.. 
 

_wb_

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I agree that "Significant Improvement" was an iffy category, but otherwise thought it went well. Just hope next time I can actually get something made and released


Edit: One thing I was a bit confused on - Beef's uPIM - It's kind of half disabled unless you "donate". To what level does this get voted for? The plain release or the donators version?
The compo rules were a bit vague on this.

"All entries will have to be uploaded to our FTP Server, packaged as ZIP-Archive or PND-File.

The entries should be included in a way that makes it as easily as possible for the user to play it (PNDs).

We like to encourage OpenSource entries - but you can also participate if you don't want to release your sourcecode."

The rules don't explicitly say that the entry has to be available gratis, but I would assume that to be an implicit condition.

In a future compo / awards thing, I think it would be good to spell these kind of things out. Can you participate with commercial software? Can you participate with crippleware or adware? To what extent is actual coding necessary? (e.g. entries like the DOS game pack that are perhaps better described as packaging than as coding)

Also I think it's a bit weird to say in the rules that OpenSource is encouraged while the license status of the entries was not even communicated at all. I think it should be a requirement to at least have something in that field in the PXML. And in the description of the entries, it should be mentioned somewhere. Licensing matters for some of us, and it has direct consequences for the usefulness of something (e.g. closed-source vs permissive vs copyleft), so people should be allowed to take that into account when judging entries.
 

foxblock

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Edit: One thing I was a bit confused on - Beef's uPIM - It's kind of half disabled unless you "donate". To what level does this get voted for? The plain release or the donators version?
I for one only had the free version available and judged it based on what I saw there.

Other apps have similar problems, I cannot properly test ptitseb's 3D printer interface "printrun" without a 3D printer, so even though it was a perfect "New Pandora Use" I can hardly vote for it based on just screenshots.
 

pmprog

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Mainly only saving is disabled, so you can test it in many ways , but you'll not save it..
The (in)ablity to save in a PIM drastically alters it's usefulness, so I was wondering how that related to the compo.
I'm not against paid software in general, but I do think it's a bit weird in a compo.
 

PokeParadox

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I enjoyed the compo and was pleasently surprised by how many entries there were.

I guess I agree with Foxblock on the communication front.

I also like the idea of PND of the year we can call it the Pandy Awards... or something! :p

And I also wish I had the time/motivation to enter (and to finish/release software in general)
 

Ziz

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Oh yeah, I forget to mention this: I like the idea of _wb_ of a software oscar!
 

levi

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The rules don't explicitly say that the entry has to be available gratis, but I would assume that to be an implicit condition.


In a future compo / awards thing, I think it would be good to spell these kind of things out. Can you participate with commercial software? Can you participate with crippleware or adware? To what extent is actual coding necessary? (e.g. entries like the DOS game pack that are perhaps better described as packaging than as coding)
IIRC the rules originally said that entries must be open source, but Eki got shouted down and changed it. I guess that means the rules didn't end up properly thought through, but I can't blame anyone for it this time.


I like that we had a signficiant improvement category, as competitions can tend to make quick broken games appear that never actually get finished. Perhaps splitting it into a few categories might be a good idea though.
 

commander-beef

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Mainly only saving is disabled, so you can test it in many ways , but you'll not save it..
The (in)ablity to save in a PIM drastically alters it's usefulness, so I was wondering how that related to the compo.

I'm not against paid software in general, but I do think it's a bit weird in a compo.
And how you can jugde 3D Printer soft without 3d printer?
 

pmprog

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And how you can jugde 3D Printer soft without 3d printer?
If I voted on concept rather than execution, which in a "New Pandora Use" category, might not be all that wrong.But as it stands in this compo, I didn't judge it. Unfair? Maybe, but I guess that's the problem requiring external factors (ie hardware)
 

TrashyMG

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Well you can use the software up to the point of actually 3D printing something.
 
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