Is Code Chef the best platform for a Novice/Beginner?

I’m a beginner to competitive coding stuff,.I have knowledge about Data-Structures till BST,and quite few algorithms as well.
So my query is:
1.Should I start with some other easier platform and work my way up,or should i continue to use Code Chef,If the answer is Code Chef …what must be my order of priority(like to-do stuff)?

PS:This question popped right after going through few forum posts…which tbh felt way above my league!:sweat_smile:

bro continue with CodeChef…
try to focus on long challenge to learn new things…
study whatever need to solve the problem it has 10 days to solve problem… i know in starting it is hard… but after 4-5 weeks u know ur path…
in starting just try to solve only 4-5 problem thats sufficient for u… if u cant solve more than 5 u done great as a beginner


It would help to solve from SPOJ first as they have questions based on direct implementation of algorithms and data structures. Then you can move to tricky questions on codeforces based on their difficulty rating. Meanwhile it is always better to participate in contests on codechef.


Skipping puzzles on codeforces :joy:
Love tricky questions though.


What kind of puzzles?

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The one which was removed few days ago ? :stuck_out_tongue:
That type.


@l_returns i’m a puzzle lover… if u have nyc puzzles… plzz share it…:grin::grin:

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I like it too !! I used to solve math puzzles and questions in my Facebook account instead of chatting :joy:.
But not in short “programming” contest !!
Though will have to learn from you about how to solve them very fast ( if you can solve those with good speed)
Maybe I can give you opportunity to solve puzzles on my behalf when you are not participating. :joy::joy::joy:


FB id plzz… i have lot of time to solve puzzle…:grin::sweat_smile its my fb id… plzz share the puzzles as soon as possible… i only have 16hr 21min to slove all the puzzles…:sweat_smile:

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Do share if you find any good resource of puzzles I would love to solve when it’s not in programming contest. :slight_smile:
Your CF handle ?
16 hours 19 min left now :wink:
Won’t be available to ask questions for next 10 days after 16 hours 19 mins :joy:

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i dont use CF…:sweat_smile:
only Codechef or sometime hackerearth…

same… mr_nastik

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Sent request \hspace{0mm} on fb

I have the very same question. Please help me @l_returns @nastik @ankur314

sahi maze le rha h mere se…:joy::joy::joy:
btw its @mr_nastik :smirk::smirk:

I suggest to start with hackerrank practice questions…
HackerRank may not have any active contests for a while…(lol), but it does have a good set of easy questions according to topics and data structures, so you would be able to understand the logic behind any technique or how any data structures is working…
Hope it helps…


@mr_nastik @shubhampandey1 thanx for your help! appreciate it
will try to learn as much as possible …and anyways the community is always there to help out on problems!:grinning:

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I personally find codechef good for contests and Hackerrank for learning and practicing

It is good to stick with CodeChef but remember not to take it as your only competitive site. I know how things will go. Firstly, you’ll begin with Long Challenge(because that is what everyone suggests). You’ll do your first one, you might or might not do well in it. You’ll then continue with your second challenge. I’m sure you’ll do good in this one(most of the persistent and hard working people perform well the 2nd time) . This is where you’ll get the hang of it. You might find yourself coding constantly for straight 6-8 hours. Months will pass, you’ll become a good coder(maybe a 4 or 5 star). You’ll be really happy and get the flow of competitive programming. So, is that all? No, one day you will try to take on a Cook off or maybe try a Codeforces short contest… You know what’s going to happen? You will know how to solve the problem but hardly be able to implement it. The easiest of the questions will take most of the time. That is when you will realize that maybe this path of Long Challenges(which most Indians follow, CodeChef being the most widely known platform) might not be the best one.

Most of the 4 or 5 starts on Codechef are solely because of long challenges. I don’t say they are not hardworking, they definitely are, but it just, kind of kills your speed. Since long provides tremendous rating jump most people love it and overlook their speed.

CodeChef should kind of lower down the rating jump for a Long Challenge. Priority should be given to Cook-off and Lunch Time, because isn’t being fast one of the most important things in competitive? Why do we have so less red coders on Codeforces? All these things boil down to the beginners following Long so religiously that they ignore a lot of factors important for competitive.

People who solve 5-6 in Div 1 are no doubt knowledgeable(I soooo respect 6 and 7 stars) but people solving 2-3 in Div 1 and reaching 4 star( Imagine solving 3 questions in 10 days), it doesn’t really help. Either become confident enough to solve plenty in Longs (good for Interviews as they judge your knowledge first and speed later) or become fast enough to solve easy-medium questions before any one else does(ICPC people).

It’s just don’t become too dependent on Long as everyone is going to suggest you that, keep solving questions in a limited time too.

All the best!


What I personally did was to set a goal to get 1000 laddus( basically they provide 1000 laddus if you have non zero score in all contests in a year) (PS: you can start it at anytime. Suppose from Nov lunchtime 2017 to Nov lunchtime 2018) exactly after one year of participation on codechef. And I am very much determined to complete whatever I decide to do. I never gave up even if I became 3 star after reaching 5 star due to short contest.
Based on my experience I advice you should decide to get those 1000 laddus ( 750 for a cool t shirt and 250 for bottle :slight_smile: )
And I am sure you will receive more and more laddus before you complete one year.
Basically I feel we should not decrease weightage of long challenge on ratings because what people participating in all three from starting do is ( long challenge +100, cook off -50 , lunchtime -50) and in this way they don’t loose motivation since they are also receiving good rank. And I am sure you will master short contests as well in few contests and you start getting better at short contests as well.
Don’t dare to break your streak that’s it. Once it breaks , it may keep breaking again and again ( who knows !!) .
It would be difficult sometimes to save your streak. I can guarantee that you will have a situation where you will have to do ditch something else (for example food) for contest.
But nothing is easy in this world :slight_smile:
I currently have streak since Nov lunchtime 2017. So basically I gave about last 57 contests on codechef.
PS: that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t participate on other platforms.