Rules on asking questions

by admin on Nov 15, 2011 - 1:47:11 pm UTC
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Before you ask a question, please do the following:
  • Read this.
  • Java users: make sure you name your class the same thing as the problem code.
  • Be wary of carriage returns '\r' in test data. C/C++ users check for a trailing '\r' in strings you read with gets()/getline(), Python users use raw_input().strip() instead of input(), etc.
  • The status page will only let you preview a snippet of your output. "Your Output (clipped)" simply means that the preview was truncated.
  • Make sure your program works correctly on the sample input(s). It must match exactly!
  • Indent your code and use logical variable names if you want help.
  • Think about large or tricky test cases, and ensure your program can handle them properly.
  • Java users: if the answer to your question is xyzException, that means we deem the bug sufficiently trivial so that just knowing what the exception is should allow you to fix it.
  • Try to fix the problem yourself for at least 15 minutes before giving up and asking for help.
  • If you think the test data are incorrect, please take a moment and consult the Best Solutions page to see how many people have gotten the problem Accepted, and then ask yourself whether it would not be arrogant to conclude that your program is correct and everyone else's programs are wrong. (Of course, problem setters do screw up sometimes, by adding trailing space, or something like that; this may bite you if you're using a different programming language than everyone else. If you suspect that this may be the case, don't hesitate to speak up. However, be forewarned that this is almost always not the case whenever the input consists entirely of numbers.)

On asking questions: post on a problem page if and only if your question is of relevance to everybody (for instance, a clarification question). If your question pertains only to you (such as if your program doesn't work, or if there's something you don't understand about your programming language), please don't clutter up the comments page with it. Instead, consider posting on the forums or just asking a friend to look your program over.

PEG Members: Please do not post for help here. Instead, use the in-class resources and email your leaders for assistance.
If at any time you post a question asking for help in the comments section of a problem, we will delete and ignore it.

Also note: programs may behave differently on the judge and on your computer, but this almost always happens only because you have done Something Bad. Please review this checklist before assuming there is a grader bug and posting a comment about it.

Thank you for your cooperation.

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