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We are investigating on making some updates to the Weekly Challenge area on Alteryx Academy! What do you think some key improvements or enhancements you would like to see in the future? We wanted to hear from you!
1) In addition to posting the solution, I would love to see some sort of a highlight pointing out interesting/unique/cool solutions. For example, for this week's challenge (208), @reply_mueller has a really polished looking chart compared to the rest. Instead of having to scroll through and read through everybody's posts, I would love to just read a highlight that points out a couple interesting solutions.
2) I think there needs to be a better way for to people to communicate back and forth. Right now, it's just everyone posting their solutions. Every so often, some people will make a note about someone who's posted before them. But rarely does it lead into a conversation. I would love for it to be more social somehow with people commenting back and forth. It should be very informal.
@JoeM -- I wonder if now's the time to introduce threaded discussions to weekly challenge? In theory, nesting replies to specific solutions within the thread, would better enable the conversational element Digan speaks to. Love the highlighting idea... perhaps this is something we can better incorporate into top contributors recognition initiatives or community highlights??
Something that really grinds my gears, both from a Community Managers perspective and as someone who dabbles in the challenges themselves, is ALL the replies to the index. There is a lot of awesome and amazing nuggets of wisdom (and genius) that end up getting lost in the 10+ pages of replies. From a moderation perspective, we've moved a few of those discussions into their own threads in General (which is now equipped with labels to encourage those conversations). I'd recommend we clean up that thread and figure out how to better direct those conversations to General. That's all I have from my end!
Taking the liberty to tag in several Weekly Challenge champions to share their thoughts as well:
Thanks for asking, @JoeM! Weekly challenges have been a game-changer in my own (and many of my coworkers') development - we're huge fans!
Please keep doing: the challenge list on the Index & Welcome thread. My coworkers report that it's super helpful to be able to find all of the Beginner challenges when they're first starting out (or an Advanced if they want to dig into a hard one!)
I do miss the topic/subject area column. I know that we can use the labels/tags, but it was nice to be able to scan the list for, say, a macro-related challenge.
If there is any way to make that sortable (i.e. sort by difficulty), that would be even better!
Threaded discussions - I love the idea from @LeahK & thoughts from @patrick_digan on making the weekly thread more of a discussion (rather than just a list of solutions). I sometimes hold back from commenting on a particularly interesting solution (especially if it's an older one), since I know my comment will just get lost in the thread. My coworkers and I get a lot of value from looking at others' solutions, so investing in this area would be valuable.
Versioning - occasionally, the start file or solution have to be updated after the original post. It would be helpful if the original post or filename indicated when it was changed (e.g. edit the post to say "The start file was updated on mm/dd/yyyy hh:mm PM EDT"). This would be especially helpful for people going back to older challenges. I sometimes have to trace back through the comments to figure out when the inputs changed to figure out why my answer doesn't match.
COVIZ-19 - never would have thought about using a map for this!
Practice with tools that have detailed configuration options (e.g. reporting, spatial)
Love's Not the Only Thing in the Air is one of our team's all-time favorites. It taught us how to conditionally format a table - most of us didn't know you could do that before we tried this challenge!
I've noticed that the Challenge Tracker I use (based on one posted here) has stopped working. Looks like the format of the "DownloadedData" has changed, so the RegEx to extract the columns currently fails.
Currently trying to figure out whats changed. Look like it needs a tweak to the RegEx.
I totally agree with @patrick_digan , the social aspect is what drives innovation here. One thing to highlight is that a number of users, myself included, have written tools to scrape the feed and determine who has completed each challenge etc. I would like to be able to see which ones I've done in comparison with others. That is best done in Alteryx, so retaining that ability is key.
I think some sort of recognition for those going over and above would be interesting.
How about some actual checking? I don't know if this happens currently, and I realise that would be extra work for someone, but currently there doesn't appear to be a check on whether the result posted is correct or simply posted with an attachment. Just a thought.
How about a badge awarded if you come up with a challenge and provide the data source? This might encourage the community to ease the burden a bit.
A more comprehensive visual element to the leaderboards. Currently, we see the leaders by year/month/week etc. It might be nice to see this with a more appealing visual.
To encourage more interaction, how about a section where one of the users who completes a challenge, perhaps chosen at random, or chosen by how interesting or different their approach was, writes their solution up as a blog/vlog?
Chocolate. Prizes. Mainly chocolate. We don't have enough chocolate.