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Merit-Based News has arrived: Social news fueled by the submitters' puzzle solving abilities.
9 points by amichail on Mar 16, 2008 | hide | past | favorite | 15 comments
There's no voting here. Rather, the point score of a submission is equal to the submitter's Numbrosia Puzzle score from the last 24 hours divided by the number of submissions made by that submitter.



Note that it makes sense to delete submissions so that the set of submissions associated with you is not too large (so that the score for each submission is not too low).

It's an interesting concept, but practicality wise it looks like a stillborn.

Why not just tie it to their FICO score for yet another more random solution? At least the person can have a life outside of solving esoteric puzzles all day long.

Interesting for a proof of concept project, but totally useless in the real world where one of the obstacles to get a successful social news site up and running is to get submissions.

Besides I don't see a strong correlation between users ability to solve a puzzle and their ability to find and post interesting content. Which would result in a pretty random front page...

What is my motivation to spend time solving puzzles?

I've got my hands full starting a company.

I hate to sound negative, but I don't think that the folks who have that time to solve puzzles have the appropriate judgment to figure out what I might want to read.

Some of the Numbrosia Puzzle players obviously have very high IQs and it would be interesting to see what they think is worth reading.

Moreover, if they have lots of time to play with puzzles, maybe they have lots of time to keep up with the latest news as well.

Mensa has always been the canonical example of a Groucho Marx punchline: A club that I don't want to belong to, because it would accept me as a member.

This looks like more of the same. I'm not interested in pretending that the ability to solve puzzles is some sort of overall mark of quality, instead of just a specialized skill that is irrelevant as often as it's relevant. I've had more than enough of that attitude. I spent years in high school and college being exalted for my skill at constructing complex solutions to toy problems, as if SAT scores were the true measure of wisdom, or competence, or virtue. They aren't.

Interesting idea, but the problem is many people use social news as a quick way to view/post/discuss things. The time involved in solving puzzles offsets that convenience, i.e. it can discourage posting because of the time necessary to make your post heard.

Though it would be funny to see porn sites have you solve a puzzle to view some pics :)

That's actually a common method for breaking captchas...

Imagine hordes of offshore spammers solving this puzzle all day long for fun (and profit).

How smart are these offshore spammers though? Presumably smart people would find better work?

Based on what I see on my site they are pretty smart and very determined.

I think you should make it truly merit based - submit a bugfix or a feature patch to an open source project to post a link :)

You can vary the task based on the sort of news site you would like to have. To compete with programming.reddit.com, you could use merit-based news with your suggestion.

As for puzzle solving, you can make the puzzles really difficult to eliminate the vast majority of spammers.

What's wrong with voting?

It's easily gamed and does not consider the intellect and/or knowledge of the voter/submitter.

Moreover, as suggested by gaika, one can use merit points from useful contributions to society instead of puzzles/games (e.g., contributions to open source projects).

It looks like this can be brute forced because its in javascript...

The homepage is scary.

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