Did you know the Theoretical Computer Science SE's birthday is coming up on November 30th? Congratulations!

How about a contest or some other fun activity to stir things up a little? After a year of great Q&A, we'd like the opportunity to "give back" for everyone's hard work.

Anniversary events area a great way to spark some interest in the extracurricular activity in your site (more meta participation). An “anniversary event" can be just about anything. Take a look at Super User’s 2nd Birthday Super Contest for inspiration. It doesn’t have to be a contest. Dream up whatever you feel the community will find interesting, and go for it.

Start a meta post or chat event to work out the details. Rally support for your event and bring it to our attention ([email protected]). We're really interested in community-lead initiatives, so let’s just say, if you can work out the details, we’re very motivated to say “go for it!”

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    $\begingroup$ Note that we already had a celebration on the blog when it was one year from the start of the private beta. $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 14, 2011 at 17:02
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    $\begingroup$ The more celebrations the better, as long as we have cake :) $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 14, 2011 at 17:55
  • $\begingroup$ The Cake is a Lie! $\endgroup$ Commented Dec 12, 2011 at 8:15

2 Answers 2


Suggestion: cstheory T-Shirt for our cstheory bloggers and editors.

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    $\begingroup$ Do the blog editors get one too? $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 15, 2011 at 7:51
  • $\begingroup$ @Joe, we can add that to the suggestion. $\endgroup$
    – Kaveh
    Commented Nov 15, 2011 at 8:44
  • $\begingroup$ That was meant a bit tongue in cheek! $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 15, 2011 at 9:13
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    $\begingroup$ How about for the moderators as well!? $\endgroup$
    – Lev Reyzin Mod
    Commented Nov 16, 2011 at 14:26
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    $\begingroup$ Could they be available for purchase for other people that aren't bloggers or editors? Or make a special t-shirt for bloggers and editors and regular people for purchase? $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 28, 2011 at 2:22

Perhaps we could have an essay contest on some topic in TCS (maybe surprising results or open problems etc. or in Rumsfeldise it "Known knowns, known unknowns and unknown unknowns"), with submissions posted on the blog and voting on meta.

If that was the case, we would need to come up with a suitable prize though.

  • $\begingroup$ Joe, we have two weeks till the anniversary, so if we are going to do this we should add more details to this. What is the time frame for this? Are we going to have them in a two weeks or is it going to continue till some specified date? Is voting on meta a good or should we use something else (like number of views, I think part of the idea of an anniversary is to celebrate but another part is to further promote the site/blog). $\endgroup$
    – Kaveh
    Commented Nov 17, 2011 at 0:11
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    $\begingroup$ about the prizes, I don't know how big is the budget, on SuperUser the value of maximum prize was $250. In that respect I think a reasonable choice can be a book that the winner will choose (with some caps on the price). Or based on the budget I think an ebook reader (or something similar) might also be reasonable. But before discussing the prize we should focus on other details of the contest. $\endgroup$
    – Kaveh
    Commented Nov 17, 2011 at 0:20
  • $\begingroup$ @Kaveh: Yes I think something like that would be perfect. It certainly doesn't have to be too big. $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 17, 2011 at 4:25
  • $\begingroup$ To make the contest more Q&A focused, I would suggest that the topic restrictions involve something like "related to a popular/unanswered/etc question on cstheory". However, I doubt that 2 weeks is a suitable timeline. It will give a huge advantage to people that have pre-prepared essays and/or people who lurk on meta. Although this is good for rewarding existing users, it is not as good for attracting new users or engaging non-regular users. Further, how would we have enough time to post all the submissions and wait for votes? If we post all submissions on the same day it will awkward... $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 17, 2011 at 5:57
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    $\begingroup$ I would think that we should start accepting submissions from the anniversary for some fixed period of time. $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 17, 2011 at 7:43
  • $\begingroup$ we should also make sure people use a specific tag to mark their submissions ? $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 18, 2011 at 8:19
  • $\begingroup$ @Suresh: Do you mean on the blog? $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 24, 2011 at 16:04
  • $\begingroup$ No I meant on the site itself $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 25, 2011 at 6:33
  • $\begingroup$ @Suresh: I don't quite follow. How would one submit an essay via the site? $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 25, 2011 at 7:30
  • $\begingroup$ oh never mind. I was confused. yes, submitting on the blog and tagging as such would be the plan $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 25, 2011 at 8:29
  • $\begingroup$ re kavehs comment any idea or more detail on how SuperUser got a $250 prize or budget for prizes? re suresh's comment, it would be very useful if there was a place/section for possible blogs to be submitted & rated & edited collaboratively etc, but unf. TCS meta is probably not the place (current atmosphere is restrictive).. maybe a stackexchange architecture chg or feature addition to discuss with them re their blogs (which are themselves rather new to stackexchange).. $\endgroup$
    – vzn
    Commented Sep 4, 2012 at 17:11
  • $\begingroup$ @JoeFitzsimons Hi Joe, please apologize for this off-topic comment ... Some people are preparing to some kind of revive TP.SE with a slightly broadend scope outside the SE network. We have already quite successfully tested importing the content of the TP data dump into a Q2A offline site on private laptops (some technical issues have still to be resolved though). Concerning hosting, we will probably try this. Not sure if you and other former TP.SE users would be interested (?), but you can find us here or mail to [email protected] $\endgroup$
    – Dilaton
    Commented Dec 4, 2013 at 15:18
  • $\begingroup$ Whoops, I meant this hosting: digitalocean.com $\endgroup$
    – Dilaton
    Commented Dec 4, 2013 at 16:41

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