Universes

Keeping TypeRacer Clean – Thanks to the Moderation Team!

Posted on July 16, 2017. Filed under: TypeRacer News, Universes |

Hi Typeracers!

Maintaining a clean and fair environment is key to the vision of Typeracer; our founder Alex (typeracer) once dreamed that in terms of the quality of the participation experience, the reputation and degree of legitimacy of the site, and the rigor of the competitive environment, Typeracer hopes to be “somewhere between your local bowling league and the Boston Marathon”. The site still has a way to go to meet this goal, but we’re taking steps in that direction.

Cheating and other offensive behavior have been a key barrier for Typeracer reaching this goal; in the early years, attempting to keep the site clean was almost a full-time job: the process of searching out and reviewing logs from the server was time-consuming, and oftentimes we weren’t able to accurately identify all the cheaters. Similarly, by the time we identified users bothering others with profanity, spamming, and other offensive behavior, it was generally too late to do anything about it. Moderation was an uphill battle overall — a labor of love for sure, but also a severe drain on resources.

Want to try your skills against TypeRacer’s anti-cheating mechanisms? Check out the new cheating universe, where anything goes. Can you beat 6277 wpm?

Seeking Moderators

We have recently built the back-end tools to support a robust moderation system, and starting last year, we’ve been bringing on some of our most dedicated users to help us form an effective moderation team. Our current team is listed below, and they’ve been doing a great job, banning 2,500 undesirable users in the past year!

Moderation Team

houjuunue
kellysgreens
deroche1
hujala
daniel598
mark40511
lelzarenn
jackeman
licahfox
jlachney
pentalon
acenonquit
dudiellon

These folks – many among the best, most dedicated typists on the site — have been working in Typeracer’s new moderation console, which enables them to review user reports, investigate accusations of cheating, etc., and take the appropriate action – warning the user, modifying inappropriate language in display names, or banning the user if necessary. Thank you all!

How You Can Help

  1. Use the “Report User” function! We have a team of dedicated community members around the globe reviewing these daily.
  2. Volunteer to be a moderator! Shoot an email to support@typeracer.com if you’re interested; we will give preference to long-time users of the site.
  3. Review the rules below. These should be common sense, but some folks may need a reminder.
  4. Let us know your suggestions

Cheating Universe

Want to test yourself against TypeRacer’s anti-cheating mechanisms, without being unfair to others and getting banned? We created a sandbox with an “anything goes” philosophy. You can test your cheating programs etc. here. Can you beat Michael DeRoche’s (deroche1) 6,000wpm score?

Cheating Universe – http://play.typeracer.com/?universe=insane

Typeracer Rules:

Your account may be moderated if you engage in the following behaviors. Moderation actions are reversible and mistakes do happen sometimes, so if you believe you were banned in error, please contact support@typeracer.com.

  1. Content/Profanity – Avoid kinds of language that your teacher or your boss wouldn’t be okay with, such as the following:
    1. Profanity – Any words that would be censored by editors in newspapers, magazines, etc.
    2. Racist, discriminatory, or hateful terms
    3. Sexual or crude anatomical references
    4. Graphic violence and drug references
  2. Harassment
    1. Sexually-suggestive communications
    2. Repeated undesired, unsolicited communications
    3. Rude and disrespectful behavior, e.g. name-calling
  3. Cheating
    1. Any use of scripts or programs to simulate or aid in the typing of text
    2. Use of macros, copy-pasting, etc.
    3. Disabling or tampering with Typeracer’s input or anti-cheat mechanisms
  4. Spam
    1. Any disruptive, distracting, repetitive messaging
    2. Advertising of non-Typeracer related content

We look forward to an increasingly fair and clean site over the coming years. See you on the track!

David (valikor)

Typeracer

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TypeRacer Championship 2017 launched!

Posted on January 14, 2017. Filed under: Contests, Guest Column, Stats, TypeRacer News, Universes |

Happy New Year

Hi All – Happy belated New Year! On behalf of Typeracer I’d like to introduce our first (but hopefully not last) guest author on this blog. Noah (licahfox) is an old-timer on the site, and truly a top-rate typist. Back in Aug. 2008, the first month that Typeracer supported user accounts, and thus the beginning of all our data, Noah was the #1 typist, with an average of 160 wpm during that month. He also had the highest single score (213 wpm), a huge 50-60wpm higher than his next competitor.

I recall being one of the best racers myself (my 128 wpm average put me in 6th place in this timeframe, and I was the second most winning typist (982 wins) — second only to Bob Bongloaded (bob_bongloaded), who had an impressive 2,000+ wins! Noah was always able to beat me, but at least with his being a professional organist, I was okay with that!

In any case, later in the post we’re going to introduce a new exciting feature. The dedication of Typeracer’s fan base over the years has been inspiring to me, and the fact that we have a chance to collaborate with an old Typeracer fan who’s been playing since the beginning is completely ‘yuge, and we’re happy to be working with Noah to introduce this new feature.  Let’s consider it Noah’s “Christmas present” to the Typeracer community – a engineering marvel for armchair software engineer Noah “Licahfox”, pulled off in all the spare time that he most certainly does not have.

It any case, since this “Christmas Present”, a new Typeracer contest format, is based on the Typeracerdata.com platform, we thought we’d announce Noah’s main TRData website here on our blog at the same time.

What is Typeracer Data?

Typeracerdata.com: It’s an awesome website for Typeracer fans and racers trying to track their progress. It’s also motivating, with statistics like “text bests” (the average of a user’s best race on each text). For me personally, this lets me view every race as an opportunity to beat my record on the individual text–regardless of how hard or easy it is–and effortlessly track my progress. This might help keep Typeracer fresh for some people. The rankings on the site are unofficial, since the database is incomplete by nature, but at least for the fastest typists, the data is largely complete and should be pretty accurate. And, the more the site is used, the more complete the data becomes!

The competition on Typeracer is heating up

One last thing I want to call-out before I turn you over to Noah is that I’m truly impressed with how the competitive environment on Typeracer has blossomed over the past 8 years. Noah had the fastest average in Aug. 2008 but is now #59! We now have racers such as “Typeracer Domination” Award-Winner Izzy (blade5468), Typeracer Hall-of-Fame 2016 nominee Fyda, Romanian typing legend Andrei “Why didn’t anyone nominate me?” Cristescu (kakarotto), upcoming Sean-Wrona-challenger Shazzy (treiderik)  are setting a very high bar, and it’s been a lot of fun racing with you guys in 2016 🙂

Here’s to 2017, and I shall pass you over to Noah. Anyone else interested in guest authoring can email me at david@typeracer.com, or message me on Typeracer. Thanks!

 David Pritts (valikor)

———

Typeracer Championship 2017

By Guest author: Noah (licahfox)

 

Hi Typeracers,

We’ve launched a new competition called TypeRacer Championship 2017! Each month, the Championship Universe will contain a small number of texts, on which top typists will compete to see who can achieve the highest overall score;  We award prizes to those who rise to the top, both for the monthly competitions and also for the overall winners of 2017.

For the current session of January 2017, which runs through the end of the month, TypeRacer will offer prizes as follows:

  • First place: $50
  • Second through fifth place: One free premium account for a chosen username

Many racers have already enrolled in the first Championship round, which began earlier this month. Whether you want to compete for a prize, or simply see how far you can climb up the rankings, we encourage you to participate this month in TypeRacer Championship 2017!

TypeRacer Championship 2017 Official Site

Hope you enjoy it!

Noah (licahfox)

screen-shot-2017-01-04-at-6-56-33-pm

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Typeracer International Ready for Next Step–Seeking Typist Volunteers from Around the World!

Posted on August 17, 2013. Filed under: TypeRacer News, Universes |

Not a good way to translate, but it was the best we could do at the time.

Not a good way to translate, but it was the best we could do at the time.

As some of you may remember, Typeracer International was first created in 2009. At the time, we used Google Translate to automatically translate the English texts into all the other languages on Typeracer. We’ve made an effort to improve these, and people have offered to assist, but we didn’t have enough resources to coordinate this kind of large-scale project while also keeping up with fixing bugs, developing new features, staying compatible with new browsers, etc.

German polyglot Emil Krebs spoke 68 languages, but we at Typeracer do not. So, we need your help!

German polyglot Emil Krebs spoke 68 languages, but we at Typeracer do not. So, we need your help!

We hope that in the future, Typeracer can use real content from all of these countries and languages, and make Typeracer truly international!

We hope that in the future, Typeracer can use real content from all of these countries and languages, making Typeracer truly international and showcasing the beauty of our world community–in the one way we at Typeracer can!

The good news, though, is that we are now ready to take on this project! Of course, the Typeracer team does not speak 50 languages, so we can’t do it alone! As I mentioned last week, we will be looking for volunteers to oversee the collection of texts in other languages, and this project is officially launching now!

We hope to create small teams to collect texts in each language. Each team-member will contribute his or her favorite texts, as well as review the texts suggested by other users in the same language; this is to assure quality, meaning that the texts should be fun, interesting, and appropriate (no profanity, no offensive content, and nothing that is unsuitable for young users).

After all the members of a language team have approved all the texts (and removed any that they can’t agree on), the team leader (to be selected by the Typeracer team) will submit them to the Typeracer team for use on the site.

If you are interested joining the team to improve Typeracer in your language, please contact me at david@typeracer.com, and I will add your name to the list and provide more instructions. In the meantime, start collecting your favorite quotes! (Of course, if you don’t have time to review texts, etc., but still want to submit your favorite quotes, you can email them to me, and I will send them to the relevant language team, once it has been created!)

Thanks, and I look forward to racing some of you in other languages soon!

David Pritts (valikor)
Typeracer Administrator

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Design A New Universe

Posted on January 27, 2011. Filed under: TypeRacer News, Universes |

NGC 7129 photo from Wikipedia

athletics (noun): competitive activities such as sports and games requiring stamina, fitness, and skill.  — wiktionary.org

Over the past three years, TypeRacer has been a fun, even addictive, virtual world for personal development and sportive competition, visited by thousands of people every day. Although I like to think that my selection of funny and interesting texts for typing had something to do with TypeRacer’s success, the athletics of typing is really the main ingredient that keeps people coming back to the site. It’s fun to to compete against people from all over the world in typing, a vital, everyday skill, and it’s rewarding to see the improvement in your focus, stamina, and dexterity.

There is also a lot of potential in TypeRacer as a medium for learning new information and I believe that a community effort to create new sections (“universes”) within typeracer.com is the way to unlock that potential.

The technology for creating specialized new collections of texts on any topic is already in place. Last year we launched a number of new TypeRacer Universes (one for accuracy and fifty for different languages). If you are not yet among the twenty six thousand people who have already tried racing in another universe, let me explain:

A Typeracer Universe is a distinct version of the typeracer.com website which is accessed through its own unique URL such as (http://play.typeracer.com/universe/code). It has all of the same functionality, but with a distinct set of texts and stats (the high scores will represent only the races completed in that universe).

A small group of us, including David Pritts (famous for appearing in the TypeRacer walkthrough video as well as being able to comfortably type 140 wpm), and a number of school teachers, have been experimenting with this new medium since last summer. David designed two new universes: one for learning SAT vocabulary and another consisting of only the easy texts from the standard rotation (which might be a hit with our “race selectors”). Meanwhile, the teachers have been successfully using their private universes to teach their students.

With this technology ready to be put to wider use, I need your help to unlock its full potential. Let’s build some new universes this year!  We could have universes that teach history, science, languages, and just about anything else. At the same time, we could create universes with different themes just for fun. Please submit your ideas!

Examples:

  • texts with only lowercase letters and no punctuation (for devices like the iPad)
  • real texts in a different language (it’s not hard to do better than our machine translations!)
  • quotes from your favorite book
  • jokes / humor
  • typing code in your favorite programming language
  • subjects like history, law, biology, physics, classic literature, etc.

Please tell us about any category of texts that you would enjoy typing or learning. Some universes could become powerful learning tools for various subjects while others could exist just for fun.

How to participate:


Please submit your ideas as comments on this blog post and vote for ideas submitted by others (using the thumbs up/down buttons). If your idea is chosen, you will get a free TypeRacer Admin account, which will let you create and maintain a new TypeRacer Universe. Or, if you see an idea that you like, you could volunteer to help create that universe.

Creating your own universe with an admin account is simple: just enter your new texts or choose from a list of existing texts (take a look at the screenshots).

If you’re submitting an idea or an offer to help, please don’t forget to mention your typeracer.com username so we can contact you later.

I look forward to hearing from all of you!

The only limits are the limits of your imagination. Dream up the kind of world you want to live in. Dream out loud. — Bono

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