Web Paint-by-Number Forum
Topic #1069: WebPBN's twentieth birthday is coming
By Valerie Mates (valerie)

#1: Valerie Mates (valerie) on Mar 15, 2024

WebPBN will turn twenty on March 24th. Any suggestions for how to mark the event?
#2: Valerie Mates (valerie) on Mar 16, 2024
I also posted this on Facebook, and there was some question there about bringing back the contests or having a puzzle theme of WebPBN's 20th birthday.

I replied:

Hm. The thing about the contests was that it was a lot of work from the judges to have to solve each puzzle and then have a (sometimes difficult) discussion to decide which puzzle was the winner. There was some discussion of bringing it back as, not a contest, but instead a theme to inspire people to create puzzles, without the judging part.

Maybe for the 20th birthday we could bring back the contests as a series of themes? (Weekly? Monthly? For the first week of each month? Who would choose the themes?) And the first theme could be WebPBN's 20th birthday?

What do you all think?
#3: Norma Dee (norm0908) on Mar 16, 2024
Puzzles wouldn't have to be solved. The Peek option could be used.
#4: Joe (infrapinklizzard) on Mar 17, 2024
I think themes are a good way to go. A prompt every week (or month as may be) could give inspiration, and maybe an impetus to creators.

If it were to come back as a contest again, I feel that it would have to have judges who would commit to solving all the puzzles. I don't think that peeking is a good alternative because then the only thing being judged is the picture quality, not the solving-quality. And this is a *puzzle* site, not an art site.

Either way we should give it an abbreviation that can be searched, though. "WCP" was too short and is ignored by the search function. (I believe Jan said that he made the search ignore any word 3 letters or less)
#5: Valerie Mates (valerie) on Mar 17, 2024
In the discussion on Facebook, Kristen suggested:

"Something like a puzzle to solve, with a title like "Happy Birthday WEBpbn" and a description like, "Hey! WEBpbn turns 20 this year! Let's all make 20x20 puzzles, to celebrate!""

I like that a lot! A theme of 20x20 puzzles to celebrate 20 years!

I haven't looked at the code that the search function uses, but I should be able to change it to *not* ignore the search word "WCP", even though it's three letters long and other 3-letter words are ignored. Even if we choose a new keyword for the new themes going forward, it would be nice to be able to do a search to find the existing puzzles that are already tagged with WCP.

I'd like to find some volunteers who would be in charge of choosing themes. If anybody would like to volunteer for that, please either post here or contact me in some other way.

In case anybody is looking for it, here is this discussion on Facebook:
#6: Alicia Snyder (prinny) on Mar 17, 2024
I think if we bring back contests it would require the judges to solve the puzzles and that can get very difficult sometimes during contests, especially for larger images so I'm down for not bringing back contests as fun as they were. I love themes and do think they inspire creativity so totally down for those. I think a 20x20 Happy birthday WebPBN theme is perfect to celebrate 20 years. That gets my vote!
#7: Valerie Mates (valerie) on Mar 17, 2024
Going down a geeky rabbit hole that is probably interesting to about three people:

An update to the question of searching for puzzles on the "Find Puzzles" page: Without changing any code, I picked 100 randomly as a contest number to search for and did a search for "WCP 100". Every puzzle in the search results had WCP in its name, but the results had a zillion different numbers in them, with no matches to the 100.

Next I looked at the code that searches for puzzles. This took me down an Internet rabbit hole, where I learned that usually the method Jan used for searching would only look at words that are 4 characters or longer, but on WebPBN that limit is set to 3 characters, so that is not the reason why my search isn't matching the word "100." At the end of the rabbit hole, I ended up finding that the reason why I'm not finding puzzles with 100 in their title is because all of the options for sorting the search results sort them by other things. That is, there *is* no option in the search program for requesting search options that are sorted by "the best match of the title to the keywords I entered." If there was, then searching for "WCP 100" should work.

I think it should be easy to add a "best match" search option.

I am out of time right now, but I will add this to my To Do list for the site.
#8: Valerie Mates (valerie) on Mar 17, 2024
Update: It was a two-line change to the code, so, on the Find Puzzles page, I added an option for "Sort by" called "Best match to search keywords." That should make it easier to search for puzzle titles in the future.
#9: Valerie Mates (valerie) on Mar 17, 2024
Anyway, back to the topic of the 20th birthday theme. Would anybody like to volunteer to pick themes after the birthday one?
#10: Brian Bellis (mootpoint) on Mar 18, 2024
This all sounds great. I look forward to making and solving some theme puzzles. To make it easier for the Theme Tsar to come up with themes maybe we should have a suggestion forum. A button on the home main page that links to all things theme related would be nice. I suppose we could recycle the Honors button since that doesn't need updating any more.

Valerie. I know I don't say it nearly as often as I should but I am so grateful for you for maintaining and improving this site. I appreciate you more than you will ever know. You are awesome!
#11: Valerie Mates (valerie) on Mar 18, 2024
Brian: Thank you for the kind words. I just wish I had the time to work on the things on my To Do list. My complicated kid is endlessly time consuming, which makes it endlessly hard to find programming time. Anyway, the biggest reason why the site is a good place is because it has so many neat people here, including you. I especially like the puzzles that you make!

I think the Honors button could do double duty, showing what's currently on the Honors page, so that people will still be able to find it in the future, and it could continue from there into the past and current themes.
#12: Valerie Mates (valerie) on Mar 21, 2024
Okay! I've updated the Honors page to say that the first new theme is:

WebPBN will be 20 years old on March 24, 2024. Let's celebrate with 20x20 puzzles on the topic of WebPBN's 20th Birthday!

I also posted this in forum topic #112, since that is the place where new WCP themes are announced.

Thanks to Kristen for suggesting making it 20x20 puzzles to celebrate WebPBN turning 20!
#13: Kristen Vognild (kristen) on Mar 21, 2024
#14: Alicia Snyder (prinny) on Mar 21, 2024
I have one in my unpublished bank ready to go!
#15: Barb Edwards (babarann) on Mar 22, 2024
Awesome! Would it make sense to rename the Honors button to Themes?
#16: Valerie Mates (valerie) on Mar 22, 2024
Barb: Hm. It would, but I have a future project that I was planning to call themes. Let me think about that!

The future project (which I think I've also described somewhere else, a while back) would be a way to set up a list of themes like "New Year's" and "Doctor Who" and then tag puzzles with the themes that they match. Each theme would have dates attached, like for example New Year's puzzles would be shown in December. Then there would be a new section on the front page called something like "Seasonal," which would show puzzles that were tagged with the current theme. Some themes, like Doctor Who, wouldn't have a date, so those would be selected on the days when there was no seasonal theme.
#17: Barb Edwards (babarann) on Mar 22, 2024
I like that idea!

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