I have an idea how to make shortest mode more interesting. For now there is no way to win a game using C++ or Java. Win depends on what language you code in. I think it would be better if all players had to code in same language. Even if you don’t know language you gonna need to use, in most cases 15 minutes is enough to find any necessary information in the Internet, moreover it’ll force you to learn new languages!
What do you think?
Yep, always losing with Java with 80-90 chars against Python 7-10 chars.
Anyway, making people code in language they didn’t choose is not fair - they simply could not know syntax.
I think there should be some kind of “shortness coeffient” for each language which show cost of each character of code. Like each character in Java costs about 0.6 while Python character costs 1.1 for example.
In the other hand it will take ages of experiments to find fair balance for chars weights.
Or at least the characters which will be ignored by the compiler will not count as a character. Honestly I hate it when some of the submitted code is just all in one line and if you don’t know the language it is very hard to understand what the code does. Even if you know the language it could still be hard to read.
If characters which will be ignored by the compiler for example spaces and tabulators then there is a better chance to “win” even if you not using Bash or Phython.
You can be competitive in shortest with one of the following:
Python, JS, Ruby, Perl, PHP.
So you can keep your “main” language for fastest and reverse and for shortest, learn one of these 5 languages.
Learning a language doesn’t hurt, you might even find it usefull later on.
And as for golf being bad practice etc, everyone’s aware of that, people don’t golf on real projects.
It’s just a fun way to learn a language, and a motivation to read the doc carefully and discover usefull features.