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Posted by taubz [send private reply] at March 03, 2003, 10:28:52 PM

As if I have any free time in life, I'd like to spearhead this exhibition concept. While it's been suggested many times, and we've tried the contest thing a few times, let's try again.

General framework:

It will be an exhibition of the creativity of TPU members. Anything original and related to programming qualifies -- from ideas to source code to a finished product.

Should enough people submit material, this could become the basis for a restart of the TPJ.

And for those that need more of an incentive, should the exhibition become widely popular, I will secure some funding and give monetary awards to the top submissions.


- taubz

Posted by gian [send private reply] at March 04, 2003, 02:33:56 AM

As I said in my post to the other thread, I feel that the number of members likely to submit something to this is fairly low.

As a matter of interest, could we have a show of hands as to who would get past the stage of intending to submit [anything original and related to programming -- from ideas to source code to a finished product] and actually submitting it?

Posted by Psion [send private reply] at March 04, 2003, 09:04:15 AM

Looking to IRC: While #tpu is an old boys' club at this point, I think #ypn has a few people who would be into this sort of thing.

Aaaand... once we had some commitment from people to handle administrative issues, we would go on a major solicitation binge finding people to participate. I think prior advertising campaigns haven't had anything as interesting as this.

Posted by ItinitI [send private reply] at March 04, 2003, 10:01:00 AM

Yeah, YPN has an exhibition type thing. That's where they get many of their articles, ect.

Posted by regretfuldaydreamer [send private reply] at March 04, 2003, 02:16:07 PM

I think the monetary idea should be scrapped.

Its a pity the global village isn't as villagy as we would like it to be. If there was a physical meeting where you could showcase you ideas, that would work really well, only, we can't all be jetting off round the world.

/me erases that random thought from everyones memorys with his super-bazuper-memorializer-dememoralizer-spelt-weirdly-men-in-black-style-thingy-ma-bob.

I know we're not the cleanest of sites language wise, but why not all write to a number of secondary/junior-high/high schools in our area and ask them to stick a notice up about us in their computer labs. You never know, some may be encouraged. I only discovered TPU when searching for some obscure Java documentation. This place isn;t well known enough about for something like that to work.

Posted by ItinitI [send private reply] at March 04, 2003, 03:09:18 PM

Yeah, I found when searching for C compiler help.

Posted by regretfuldaydreamer [send private reply] at March 04, 2003, 05:32:26 PM

OK, a couple of things:

1)Psion (lets face it, what he says, should go around here) has been saying for ages that he wants to turn this into a non age centered site. Lets shift the new site once its finished over to the devlocus address (or some other one if Psion so wishes to do so), and carry on our present activities there (As well as some new ones). Lets face it the teenagers there are nearly in their twenties and most of you are at universitys. Whenever I found this site I thought it would be more for the 13-15 age group.

2)Lets make www.tpu.org for newbies who are _Willing_ and _Want_ to learn.

3) BY my calculations:
-if each of us contacts 10 schools
-and five of them put a poster or letter up about us in their computer lab,
-and five people see it,
-thats 25 newbies per person,
-an of those 25 newbies per person, I think we would find at least 1 with real potential, and who really will want to learn.
-That means our membership size will _double_ in terms of people who really want to learn.

(Yes, we will also get troves of people who really will just dos (slack) about, but they'll get bored soon enough, if we weed them out for not coding.)

With these newbies (who show they will work, and have the potential), who I think preferably should be between 13-15, we will give each one an individual mentor who will talk to them on a regular basis, ask them what they are up to, how they are coming along, being encouraging, but not overly critical. They will sugest new things to them every few weeks, suggest projects which they could tackle. I think if someone shows potential and they are encouraged by a really experienced person, they will work even harder.
nb (We won't state that our mentors are "THE MOST EXPERIENCED HACKERS IN THE WORLD", but show them what we're up to, (this means we are being reviewed as well) etc. - I don't want to give newbies the impression that we think we are all powerful masters of computing, more that we just want to encourage them, and let them come to that conclusion themselves.))

4) The TPU Smerdy talks about in days of old is probably dead because all those people have grown up, and for some reason, we haven't found the smae inspiration they did. Maybe we ourselves are a lost cause for being totally dedicated to computers, but maybe we should work towards making the next generation who use this site dedicated.

5)Everyones absolutely gonna hate this idea, but who cares, its just a random thought: There is no real award or "I can do that" thing around for teenage programmers. Why not have a sort of hacker challenge thing (hacker in the _non_ "Im gonna hack the FBI" sense). We set down this sheet of rough criteria (ie they can demonstrate a wide knowledge of specific computer principals, which they have claimed to be interested in, they show a fluent and detailed knowledge of language x etc.) and then tell newbies to work towards them. If a senior TPU member is impressed by someones progress (possibly a mentor), they suggest to Smerdyakov or some other suitable person that their efforts be commended (ie we put up a post in the general board or summit saying that they have reached "Some-Non-Meaningful-Title" level of computer proficiency.) and have a page which just lists the people who have been given the award.
Note: In no way do I want a "lets all give ourselves grandeous titles and pat ourselves on the backs for doing nothing". They should be a tough and rigourous award that someone who is part of the community will be proud of obtaining, not something that will look good on a university application form but something to allow someone to say to themselves "I really have worked hard for this". These awards should be special (i.e. maybe 1 or 2 are given per year, and are something a newbie can really aspire to).

Im sure I did have other things to post, but I can't remember them.

Posted by gian [send private reply] at March 04, 2003, 06:49:39 PM

I think that is more heirachical than we really want to be. If this exhibition this is going to go on at all, then it needs to be anyone and everyone showing off their stuff.

Posted by regretfuldaydreamer [send private reply] at March 04, 2003, 06:57:21 PM

As I said, I didn't think it would be popular, it was just a random idea. But I think that a couple of members both high and low in the grand scheme of things would suggest a candidate... Im gonna stop now, this ideas gonna go nowhere.

So, are we gonna wait till the new site engine is finished to start this?

Posted by Psion [send private reply] at March 04, 2003, 08:35:11 PM

Replies to rdd:

1) I don't really dig the name "devlocus.org" for a site for hobbyist programmers in general. It should include the hobbyist bit that would make the site special. I'd rather turn devlocus.org into a site where I make fun of my various stupid things done (including choosing domain names!) in my younger years. ;-)

2) I think it would be a shame to completely change TPU to a newbie focus. I think it should contain information specific to teens, like I said before with my examples for the document I mentioned. Having a community whose members might expect to have more in common than they would with coders of all ages is also a good thing. It would be good if most TPU members were also active within the more general group, and perhaps the more experienced members would not be involved with any non-social aspects of TPU, or only with the resources we could provide on education, future employment, etc..

3) I think that sort of aggressive advertising would be a great idea, once we have things planned out and set up on our end. I think mentoring in general works out if the mentor is willing to field lots of questions even when others qualified to answer are around, but we might not want to make it quite so codified and official. Such relationships generally form on their own. (Several people have asked me questions about fixed programming topics nearly every day for a while on IRC, and it has always happened spontaneously. =)

4) The end is near. We must act now to prevent the rotting of a generation's minds! (not really joking!)

5) I don't like the "awards" point of view, with a limited number awarded per time period, but I think some kind of certification would be nice. I remember that when I was applying to universities, I felt disadvantaged because their admissions counselors were tuned to look for standard extracurricular activities, while I had spent most of my time working on coding projects. If we could become a credible authority of some kind capable of certifying that a person had worked long and hard and really accomplished something, that would be amazing.

Oh, and as far as actually working on making these things happen, I don't expect to be able to spend significant amounts of time on such things until the summer, which is effectively some time between 2 and 3 months from now. That's not very far off, and I think the summer is also a period of significantly increased free time for almost everyone here. Soo... it would probably be best to only have planning until then.

Posted by Neumann [send private reply] at March 04, 2003, 09:15:54 PM

Point 3 from Smerdyakov and C_Rdd is simply great. I'm totally for that.

If I dig enough and check my relations, I might be able to contact some old comp. sci. teacher from high-school and from college (cegep here).

Posted by gian [send private reply] at March 04, 2003, 09:21:53 PM

I really like Psion's 5th point... that would indeed be excellent.

Posted by CViper [send private reply] at March 05, 2003, 06:11:59 AM

I can probably have a talk with one of my comp-teachers about 3). He's also taking care (an active member somehow connected to it) of a network called "Kunskapsn?tet" here in Sweden; the goal of the network is to connect as many schools as possible... Could be a nice way to get out a message ;)

About 5), I like that one too. Dunno how hard it's to "become a credible authority", but in my experiences a simple reference to someone can already work magic.
One could also try to combine that with some kind of showcase maybe...

Posted by CodeRed [send private reply] at March 05, 2003, 11:34:18 AM

This exhibition thing doesn't have to be all that complicated. Just add a link on the main page called "Member Creations" or something like that and set up a way to upload your program, give a breif description, and maybe a screenshot or two. Just go to gamedev and look at the way they did their GD Showcase.

Posted by ken [send private reply] at March 06, 2003, 11:44:34 PM

regretfuldaydreamer wrote:
"I know we're not the cleanest of sites language wise, but why not all write to a number of secondary/junior-high/high schools in our area and ask them to stick a notice up about us in their computer labs. You never know, some may be encouraged. I only discovered TPU when searching for some obscure Java documentation. This place isn;t well known enough about for something like that to work. "

I live by two high schools and attend juniour high. I will be happy to post notices about the contest in my school computer lab and IT Class. Futhermore I could suggest my IT teacher to post the notices in his webdesign, and intro to programming classes at the High School.

I could also go to the other High School and post notices there if TPU truly does go through with this.

Posted by gian [send private reply] at March 07, 2003, 01:52:11 AM

Perhaps give the web designers a miss, but programming classes work well.

Posted by regretfuldaydreamer [send private reply] at March 07, 2003, 11:58:10 AM

I don'k mentioning the a "contest" is a good idea. The idea of the exhibition is to show off what you've made recently. I think we should mention it to a webdesign class though, we could try and get a few to start programming.

Posted by Psion [send private reply] at March 07, 2003, 02:00:53 PM

Yes, I think that the whole point is missed if it is called a "contest," or even if any "prizes" are offered, as taubz suggested.

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