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A place to come and discuss the features of this site, as well as suggest/request additions and modifications. Oh yeah, and Bug reports too.
2013-10-22 01:12:44
Difficulty ratings - a general understan

Since the inception of Perplexus by levik there has been no formal definition to interpret the meaning of the "Difficulty lights", that rectangular bar of five squares which appears at the right in a problem's header bar.

Obviously that has never been attempted because of a whole range of variables, the most significant reason would probably be the experiential background that a solver can bring to a problem.

At review we may refer to difficulty as being from D1 through to D5. Such an idea is pointless without some point of reference.

It has been generally adopted that "D3", the mid-range, represents the academic expectations in and around those of a middle high school mathematics student. This has stood well since inception.

With that as a basis, the general acceptance has been:

D1 - a relatively simple mental process.

D2 - this is a mental process but will need some physical recording to transact.

D3 - these are not HS "textbook" exercises but one should expect to employ such mental processes.

D4 - probably not unlike D3, but it will require a deeper background, maybe a logic not immediately obvious.

D5 - few exist on Perplexus; the solution does need to be solvable by someone at his/her home desk.

The scale about has other translation difficulties, not only because it is vague but it needs to be extended to other categories like Science, Word Problems and Riddles.
Generally we have found that assumptions behind the scale with "Math" as the focus works quite well; Riddles is an issue as no-one can pre-guess prior knowledge.

Experienced visitors and subsequent posters of problems have some understanding of the above framework. Remember that the D-rating is primarily intended as guide. Comments at review may challenge a D-rating, and where it is considered to be too diverse from the above scale, scholars may make an adjustment.

Normally a D-rating should not be seen as a reason to impede the passage of a problem through the queue.

2013-12-01 03:08:26
Re: Difficulty ratings - a general understan

I have read it, found it well defined and agree to every word of it, including the last sentence.
On my part,in the future, I may suggest a different D-rating as an option , but
not as a binding condition to get my vote. Nothing in the past precluded such insisting on one's definition.
There is still one un-addressed issue in the whole system presented above:
Numerous problems in Math category may be d2 or less if solved by a few-line
heuristic program while presenting significant difficulty (d4)if solved analytically.
In few instances this issue was addressed by a statement like: "analytic solution
preferred" or similar.
Maybe, just in Math, a grading like d4(c2)- used only when needed - would resolve it?

2013-12-01 06:23:32
Re: Difficulty ratings - a general understan

For my part I am not prepared to sway from what has been generally accepted, and worked, since levik built the Board.

2013-12-01 20:06:05
Re: Difficulty ratings - a general understan

Recently I was accused by Brian of lobbying , i.e. asking him to influence Math Man (a highly creative JM, whom I respect very much) to lower his d2 of KNAVES II
It is an outrageous lie.

I simply asked for his Email to forward my reservations, since the puzzle KNAVES II
was a simple tautology and D1 looked appropriate, at least in my eyes(still looks d1!)
To illustrate, to what point the lying Dictator wants to discredit me, I simply post MY MAIt here, - to show a bona fide letter.

<begin cut& paste>
On 16/10/2013 9:36 AM, Ady Tzidon wrote:

You meet three people, A, B, and C. One is a knight, one is a liar, and one is a knave.

A:I am a knave.
B:A is a knave.
C:I am a knave.

Who is a knight, who is a liar, and who is a knave?

If the above merits D2, then something is wrong with the difficulties' levels definition.

Neither A nor C can be Knights, so B must be one and his statement being true, A is a Knave and C a Liar.

The above conclusion is reached while reading the puzzle.

I am mailing this notice to explain my vote.
If you have MM's Email , - please forward it to him.

You are free of course to disagree with me.

Ady Tzidon

I wrote the above due to Brian's remark on the board, which favored D2.
Where is the lobbying? i
Who cares about a correspondence between two people, each allegedly trying to improve the presentation?
Why lie?

If needed, Brian's reply will be posted, in which he says nothing, explains nothing, does not criticize my approach and lists complains about his low ability to cope with simple math.
I do no want to continue my verbal dispute, but since my reputation is at stake
and I do not want it to be marred with false accusations, I will respond to each
new "truth" by presenting the true facts.

Brian, why not stop here and get off my back?
Please do not Email me, whatever I want to say - it must be heard by all.

Math Man
2013-12-02 09:47:15
Re: Difficulty ratings - a general under

Luckily, "Knaves! 2" passed as D2.

What is going on with "Who's asking" and "Ars magna"?

2013-12-06 11:45:27
Re: Difficulty ratings - a general understan

At present time it is a D4 puzzle.
Hope it will be resolved soon.

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