Saturday, September 6, 2008

Who plays Rankk?

Rankk is approaching two years. With nearly 250 challenges, it's - I venture to say - one of the bigger challenge sites out there. In fact, Rankk has consistently received a high ranking at Wechall, a global challenger tracking site.

Not all the challenges were coded by us. About one fifths of that number were ideas or whole challenges contributed by our members.

Great thanks to them!

The next target is 300, another 50 challenges to go. After that, we'll aim for 500 challenges - a massive leap of 200 more challenges. A tall order but we'll make that the end point. Seriously, we don't think anyone - not even horst35, quangntenemy or mithmith, the current top three, can complete the entire journey. But that's the challenge for them :)

For us, the challenge is to continually keep the site relevant, not just by adding new challenges but also by adding new features and improving existing ones.

The membership now stands at 1477, averaging about two members per day. Passable, I guess, but nothing like what we were expecting.

But, while the numbers are important, they aren't necessarily a blessing. As one member pointed out, it's the quality of the members rather than the quantity. No point having a large membership but a low retention rate.

He's a point. A number of members have been with Rankk since it was started. And then there are those who return to the site intermittently with fresh ideas to solve a challenge or when there's time to spare.

Lately, the question of who Rankk attracts crossed my mind. With a variety of challenge types - mathematics, logic, puzzle, CGI security, programming, cryptography, steganography - there's surely something for anyone who has come to the site, whether by chance or through word of mouth.

The people who enjoy Rankk are people who have a knack for solving. These are people who probably see and write code every day. People steeped in mathematics tend to do well too, as logic, programming and cryptography are all related to the field of mathematics.

And related to the who is the why. Why do people play Rankk? Is it a site for the bored - so the objective is to pass time? Or is it a site to feel challenged - so the objective is to rise to the top?

It's probably to be a combination of factors. But one thing is for sure: Rankk is about challenging your brain.

A member has found it to be a "good method" to kill time.

Если кто еще не знает --- --- хороший способ поубивать время и поупражнять свой разум.