Sorry for the double-post, but I just thought I'd actually disagree with
part of Josef's argument for in-line code over URLs.

Josef 'Jupp' SCHUGT wrote:
>  - Posting the code is less error-prone simply because fewer sources
>    of error are involved. No web server and browser is needed and in
>    most cases mail user agents are superior to web servers and
>    browsers as far as translation of one system's encoding to another
>    one's is concerned. Solutions to the Ruby Quiz don't tend to be
>    longer than ordinary e-mails so size is no reason not to use
>    e-mail.

In my experience, the web browser is a far more consistent platform, and
perhaps more ubiquitous, too.

Solutions to the Ruby Quiz are often longer than ordinary e-mails, and
anyway there was a problem with the (now-defunct) gateway interface that
often truncated Ruby Quiz solutions. There are also the problems of
in-line code being re-formatted by mail agents; this is avoided by using
attachments rather than in-line code.

Your point stands, though -- if you're reading this message, you can
always read code that's appended in-line.

>  - To my understanding, the reason of providing code is not primarily
>    being listed as one of the people who contributed a solution. It is
>    rather allowing others to comment on the code, point out mistakes,
>    provide stylistic improvements, or even discuss if the solution
>    actually fits the specification. This process is simplified by
>    including the code in the mail so that it can easily be quoted.

Absolutely.

>  - Several mail user agents provide no easy way to open a URL. This
>    usually means that one needs to copy it, perhaps start a Web
>    browser, and then direct that browser to the given URL. The obvious
>    question one may raise: Is that code acutally worth the effort? Theq
>    likeliest answer is "No. If that guy were sure that he has written
>    fantastic code, wouldn't he be proud and show it to everyone in the
>    most direct manner? Next mail, please."

The fact that there are crappy mail clients (some even in common use)
seems to me to swing in favour of moving to the web. You can participate
on this list on the web; I'd recommend that over such a weak mail agent.

I always try and write the key features of my code, or why I think
people would want to read it, kind of like an executive summary (but
not). I like when people do this (with library announcements or whatever
else, too) because it not only helps the reader decide whether it's
worth their time, but it also provides a "way in" to the code if they do
decide to look into it.

I think I've knocked down that point, so let me add another of my own:
if you put the code in the mail, it gets archived with the rest of the
list's messages, and it does belong there. (You can download all
submitted solutions at rubyquiz.com, but that's a bit out of the way
from the list.)

> Just my 0.02 EUR.

Well, your 0.02 EUR is worth 1.7 times my 2 Aussie cents.

Cheers,
Dave