I'm a fan of short, but regular programming "challenges" or "quizzes".  
I've seen a couple of others express the same sentiment here and even 
on the new Ruby Forum.  Given that, I thought I would seriously gage 
interest.

Main Question:  I can spare the time to organize and run a Ruby Quiz.  
Would you, the Ruby community, like to have that?

I'll outline my  thoughts about how it should work below.  If you 
disagree with my ideas, speak now or forever hold you peace.  If you 
have ideas you would like to add, please do.  This is a group effort.

As far as format goes, I figure we would follow somewhat close to 
Perl's Quiz of the Week in that we would have one quiz each week.  A 
quiz would be sent out at some point in the week and followed up by a 
summary later in the week.  Then the cycle would repeat.

I see little value in the Perl Quiz's Regular/Expert distinction 
though, so I would drop that.  When we thought up a tougher problem, 
our quiz would be tougher and when we didn't it would be easy.  
Different problems are different difficultly to different coders 
anyway.  If one question doesn't appeal to you...  Well, enjoy the week 
off.

I'm thinking we would keep the quiz on this list.  I would prepend a 
[QUIZ] to the front of question and summary subjects, for clarity.  I 
could place a reminder in the quiz questions for people posting 
solutions and discussion to do the same.

I'm offering myself as the fallback source of questions.  I would add a 
footer to the quiz messages, inviting people to submit questions 
directly to me.  When quiz time rolls around, I would choose a 
submission or provide one of my own.  The community would be strongly 
encouraged to submit questions as I'm not a Ruby expert.  I imagine I 
would stumble across an interesting topic from time to time, and a dull 
one at least as often.  Be warned.

As for problem difficultly, I have only a general guideline in mind:  
The problem should be relatively quick to solve.  I left that vague on 
purpose.  Everyone has different amounts of time to spare and 
ultimately it must be in the question writer's hands.  But if you want 
people to actually work you're quiz, you should probably try not to 
overwhelm them.  TopCoder often has interesting questions that can be 
solved in under an hour and I solved this week's Perl Quiz (in Ruby) in 
a little over thirty minutes.  The occasional problem that takes a 
couple of hours for the average coder may be acceptable, but the main 
goal would be to keep it brief.  If you want to submit an involved 
problem, try adding some basic framework code to the question and see 
if you can leave just the interesting part to "fill in".

Again, I would be the fallback guy on summaries.  When you submitted a 
question, you would be expected to state whether or not you would like 
to do the summary.  If there's not a volunteer, I would do it to the 
best of my ability, which certainly won't be perfect.  The community 
would be expected to chime in with corrections and comments as needed.

I feel the summary is the primary reason to host our own challenges.  
We can examine submissions and solutions from a Ruby standpoint.  That 
would be our main goal, to share interesting Rubyisms and thusly learn 
more Ruby together.

A final issue I'm undecided on:  Perl's Quiz has a "grace period" (60 
hours) before solutions SHOULD be posted, to allow people time to think 
the problem through on their own before they examine the solutions of 
others.  Rot13 encrypting solutions would probably have about the same 
level of security, just to throw out a Usenet-like alternative.  It's 
strictly custom and not enforced, but it works more often than not.  
I'm interested in hearing what others think about this.

Again, this is an idea in the making.  Now is the time to support it, 
question it, condemn it, and/or add to it.  All opinions will be 
considered and a quiz will be implemented if a vocal majority seems to 
want it done.

Thanks for your time.

James Edward Gray II