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Unrated Participation in Long Challenges

I wish to propose a change that would help me and many other users I know immensely. Long challenges should incorporate unrated participation. It often happens that I'm busy in that particular week but try one or two problems and want to submit them but can't because I'd have to do 5 other problems to prevent my rating from dropping significantly. I then have to wait for days to make a submission and we all know its easier to debug solutions right after we've coded them as they may get fuzzy for our memory after even a week.


  1. Less need to make fake accounts.
  2. More value assigned to codechef ratings as they then fluctuate less.
  3. Since codechef is starting a Division system (as on the FB page) it is even more important.
  4. The core motive of helping people learn gets strengthened.
  5. Less need for people to communicate solutions. I often have to discuss solutions with a participant who has AC'd the problem to know if my approach is fine. This shouldnt be required.
Disadvantage: People could misuse this to cheat for ratings by not doing longs where they cant solve say >=6 problems. To prevent this, ask users to register as unrated well before the contest to be able to submit as unrated. Or, the user could be asked just before making the first submission as well. (Since we already have the choice to see all problems before deciding to participate anyway).

What are your opinions?

asked 01 Mar, 22:26

harrycoda's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%

edited 02 Mar, 15:59

Is it confirmed that Codechef is starting a Division system? I didn't see any official announcement.

(02 Mar, 14:00) nileshjha194★

No, it was not a official announcement. It was just given as a comment in FB. I think it will be announced soon.

(02 Mar, 15:05) ista2000 ♦2★

Okay...I think I get the intuition but the way you put it is really politically incorrect and backfiring. My below arguments are not on opposition to your suggestion, but just showing how your points can be interpreted/tinkered to give you a big hit. I will forward your suggestion to admin, as I feel your suggestion has some credit- especially for college and school guys during exam weeks. I personally know people who dont participate due to exams and fear of ratings declining. (Well, I dont, my zig-zag curve makes it obvious what my exam months are :p ). Now, back to why your points need improvement.

Less need to make fake accounts

Codechef doesnt allow multiple account in first place. Do you have one? IF yes, then do @admin knows? And yes, the rules state they will ban both accounts- we did so in past for many participants and will do so in future.

More value assigned to codechef ratings as they then fluctuate less.

The disadvantage you put is the killer for this point. Lets say a coder has good rating- how will you know he didnt "farm" it by abusing the proposed system this way? And afaik, we will have to make him declare that at start of contest- but codechef doesnt have registering option yet. You can estimate the time needed.

Since codechef is starting a Division system (as on the FB page) it is even more important.

Why? Can you please connect the points? "Fall from one division to another" is not a good argument.

The core motive of helping people learn gets strengthened.

I get your intuition for this- when theres no scare of ratings then theres a unique fun in participating in that contest. But it gets boring very soon. But since you said for occasional/once-in-a-while, it should be ok.

Less need for people to communicate solutions. I often have to discuss solutions with a participant who has AC'd the problem to know if my approach is fine. This shouldnt be required.

Controversy/Flame bait. This point can be crudely interpreted as "I discuss questions with others and I am publicly saying so. Do whatever you want to do." (or in other words, some may interpret it as defying the rules. Some- not me.)


answered 01 Mar, 23:04

vijju123's gravatar image

5★vijju123 ♦
accept rate: 19%

edited 01 Mar, 23:06

No I do not have a fake account, yet I do know many people who do this, and I think they have a genuine reason. I mentioned farming in disadvantages and proposed a registering system to go with this myself. I don't see why it can't be done. Falling from one division to another is a good argument. Why should I have to solve easier problems of Div2 for doing just a say Div1P5 in some long and not the others. That just intensifies the problem. I did mention participants who have already 'AC'd' the problem themselves. I simply dont participate in the round so idk if thats unfair.

(01 Mar, 23:18) harrycoda5★

I did mention participants who have already 'AC'd' the problem themselves. I simply dont participate in the round so idk if thats unfair.

Ok, that point felt like the communication happened between the contest. I accept my misinterpretation there.

(01 Mar, 23:33) vijju123 ♦5★

I think one should be more inclined towards learning new things rather focusing on ratings.Ya i know rating matters but if you blindly discuss question with others than it will increase your rating but never makes you learn what competitive coding is all about. If you are worried of rating or don't have time to go for contest than please don't participate,practice it later but i know it will not give you such thrill as it does during contest. But anyways you have to compromise somewhere so decide yourself where you want to compromise.

Your point is good enough to add extra feature of unrated participation.But it should added in such a way that once you opted for unrated than you can't switch for rated once,as some will solve question as unrated and if it is correct than they will solve it in rated part and earn points.

Regarding fake account,codechef can do one thing that they disable new account creation during long contest or just for long contest new account participation is not allowed or make them register 3-4 days before itself,so that new account participation is checked. It may help codechef by increasing there active user (if this is so,as someone mentioned it) but it is discourages other coders if fake accounts ranks higher than them. As by introduction of new rating system, division 1 users can make fake profile to participate in division 2 and rank higher,it is unfair to authentic division 2 users. These are my views.


answered 13 Mar, 22:13

kunal_coder_1's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%

It is not about focusing on rating. Personally it doesn't matter much to me but at the same time I don't want to end up in division 2 just because I tried only say the fourth or fifth problem of division 1. I don't see why to compromise when it is easily avoidable. If you shut registration during longs, that basically means people can't register for 33% of the year. Instead perhaps make long competitive only for accounts which are x months old. (Again, not very wise and still can be tricked with almost equivalent ease). I don't think much can be done about fake accounts anyway.

(15 Mar, 10:30) harrycoda5★

Hmm ! Sound right ! But again that would defeat the purpose of ratings ! So a simpler solution to your problem is that , even attempt the questions after the contest is over and questions are available in practice.

And the fake id thing , yeah I know a lot of people do this , it actually at the end of the days benefits CodeChef in presenting the number of active users on CodeChef ! So that is in no way a problem for anyone !


answered 06 Mar, 03:16

harendrasingh's gravatar image

accept rate: 10%


I don't think it defeats the purpose of ratings, as long as you have to decide whether you want to participate in contest rated or unrated before you submit the first time and can't change it afterwards. In my opinion the purpose of the ratings is to provide an indication of the skill level of that person. It shouldn't be a measure of how much free time that person has. This is also why ratings are not dropping, when not participating. I think this could be a nice way to boost participation, as it would let people participate even if they have very limited time.

(06 Mar, 18:07) nanoalpaca6★

What happens if you push your code to github or share it ? Codechef cant ban you or decrease your rating as it was only practice for you.

And plus people care about rating tooo much anyways. I know its really nice to have an always increasing graph. But it is never like that.

Just have a look at Gennady's CodeForces rating : I mean his rating drops if he comes second, but he still takes part, cause having a perfect rating graph is overrated.


answered 07 Mar, 11:58

dollarakshay's gravatar image

accept rate: 4%

edited 10 Mar, 21:22


It is not about having an increasing graph. It's about not having a 200 point decrease just because you found one problem interesting and implemented it. On the other hand waiting 15 days to implement a solution you came up with is boring as well.

(13 Mar, 11:49) harrycoda5★

The idea was good but codechef states that u can do those problems later on after the completion of long challenge.


answered 10 Mar, 18:09

nikhil142's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%

Yeah, but long challenges last 10-12 days. If you come up with a solution to an interesting problem on day 1 you have to wait for so long to know if it's correct. This shouldn't be the case in my opinion.

(13 Mar, 11:50) harrycoda5★

I think it is a great idea ......but then we will be quite relaxed about it and it will feel like a practise session and pretty soon many will lose interest or will not be able to push their limits to solve a problem which is the main motive behind this contest :)


answered 10 Mar, 20:27

shubhamiiitdmj's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%

Please read the post and previous comments carefully. I'm not saying make them completely unrated, just add it as a separate feature to take part as an unrated.

(13 Mar, 11:51) harrycoda5★

if u don't want to participate then wait for 10 days and then solve the problems in pracitse region .


answered 13 Mar, 22:35

n_ayant123's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%

Why there is no change in rating of March challenge?


answered 13 Mar, 22:40

shawbhai's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%

Why is this answer irrelevant? :)

(13 Mar, 22:41) vijju123 ♦5★

I am sure that in the division 2 the rating system not correct. I analyze that one users has more rsting than me in division 2 and also securef same marks and rank as me. But after rating he get more rating than me though he have more rating than me before me. Likely before contest i have 1747 and hr may be 1754 After secure same rank he get +70-+85 But i get +47.....why....pliz explain?


answered 14 Mar, 15:52

souradeep1999's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%

The idea was good even attempt the questions after the contest is over and questions are available in practice.


answered 16 Mar, 12:02

shithlendra_7's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%

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question asked: 01 Mar, 22:26

question was seen: 4,889 times

last updated: 16 Mar, 12:02