Hacker News

readyoursicp said a month ago:

Hey everyone,

I’ve found that learning algorithms is more engaging when solving them with other people. So, I’ve built a site to help people learn algorithms and data structures together! I’ve worked on it with a friend for a few months and would love your feedback.

On Binary Search, you can create or join a room with others and work on the same coding problem together. You can choose to compete to finish the problem first, or solve them together and help each other out.

Working with friends (or strangers!) makes for a much more engaging atmosphere, and we’ve actually built a small community of coders who love to help each other out! Check it out at https://binarysearch.io — we’ll be hanging out in some of the rooms. Let us know if you have any feedback or run into any issues. Hope to see you around!

112 said a month ago:

The `/api/stats` request (500) hangs the application on my side. Can't wait to try it out, I wish there were more game-y training sites. Codewars is fun, but knowing you're competing with other people at the same time is way more interesting.

pseudoramble said a month ago:

Came here to say the same thing. This endpoint is eventually responding for me, but it's taking between 20-30 seconds.

In addition, https://binarysearch.io/api/rooms just returned a 502 Bad Gateway. Maybe the site is getting hugged by HN.

readyoursicp said a month ago:

We're back open for business! Just had to cache some things :P

bananaeater said a month ago:

Still getting a hug of death message on my end? Edit: It's up now, looking forward to using it.

readyoursicp said a month ago:

Hey, thanks for the heads up and sorry about that! We've just pushed a fix. Should be back up and running in a few minutes.

coldfire said a month ago:

love the concept, especially as a self taught programmer. I've always struggled with algorithms myself, and I find reading books equally boring.

On a side note, what's the UI components library that you're using? I've a hobby project that I'm working on and really liked the style/theme of your app :)

misterhtmlcss said a month ago:

I'm like you a self taught for the most part and I find algos boring to learn alone as well. They aren exactly head turners, but still in a group would be nice.

Also I was thinking the same thing about the UI. I hope there is an answer somewhere. It's very Balsamiq looking and I love that!

readyoursicp said a month ago:

Thanks! Hope to see you around the site :)

We're using https://thesephist.github.io/blocks.css/ -- it's great and super simple!

cyorir said a month ago:

How many problems do you have available?

readyoursicp said a month ago:

I've got 50 at the moment, ranging from easy to hard -- adding more every day, though!

pseudoramble said a month ago:

I like this idea! I'd like to try this out again when the API is online again, and I can get a few other people I know online too. It was nice that readyoursicp joined me for a few minutes in the room to chat though.

A lot of this is off-the-cuff, and not match up with what you're aiming for here. Hopefully some of it is useful though.

1. During the process, I couldn't quite figure out how I was doing or what I was doing wrong. One example was the determining if a number is a palindrome or not. I didn't see indication about if I was failing certain tests in the test suite, or if I had an issue with syntax, etc. Some more feedback would help here.

2. A minor thing, but on my laptop I noticed that while the line would wrap, the code itself is running under the chat portion of the room. Makes it harder to edit.

3. I think the room concept is nice, especially if I just want to jump into a certain class of problems and go. However, it would be cool if you could have one room indefinitely. Perhaps a private room of sorts?

4a. It would be nice if you could request the difficulty of problem in the room itself. Right now you need to make a new room to match the difficulty, but I think that having problems come to that room might be nice.

4b. In addition to requesting difficulty of problems, requesting kinds of problems might be nice too. I can imagine a CS student being in some kind of data structures/algorithms class and wanting to focus on that specifically. Something like "medium difficulty problems involving trees" or "hard problems involving strings."

Anyway, cool project and good work!

readyoursicp said a month ago:

Hey there, was super fun playing with you earlier. Thanks a lot for the feedback -- will definitely address / fix some of your issues!

niftylettuce said a month ago:

Nice to see you're using my email forwarding service, https://forwardemail.net!

Awesome stuff!

readyoursicp said a month ago:

It's great, thank you so much for making it! So much more convenient than creating another GSuite account (and paying $6/mo) :P

rckoepke said a month ago:

Super cool! Is there a complete list of algorithms covered by this site? Does it cover more esoteric ones like fibonacci search? Or mainly just linear/binary search + lots of sorting algorithms?

I think it may also be good to also have some quizzing included for the properties of the algorithms, so users not only build the algorithm but also provide its:

- O() / theta() / omega()

- In what cases will the runtime of this be "O(n log n)?"

- Is this algorithm better or worse than merge sort if you have 2^16 long int elements and 16GB of ram?

etc etc.

Knowing how to implement algorithms helps solidify a lot of that, but in the end the truly important thing is knowing which algorithm to use for a particular purpose, and what the downsides are for each other algorithm.

crypticlizard said a month ago:

Great Idea. I can see there is room for monetization too. Although ads are distracting, they could work as occasional in a room. Also, if it caught on, this could join the likes of leetcode...Ppl would pay for this b/c peer learning can be far more efficient or at least engaging. I can certainly see leetcode wanting to copy this idea.

This already has something over twitch which is sort of similar but not interactive. Also, I could see fb ads as quite effective to keep organic traffic up and help this catch on as a competitive way to get a job. You could even market the data you gain to companies looking to hire.

ktpsns said a month ago:

Sounds funny, but I would like to join some room without registering first. I don't see why this service needs my E-Mail adress just that I can have some seconds (minutes? hours?) of fun.

imjasonmiller said a month ago:

Great idea! After Java and C++, are there any plans to add support for Rust? I'll give JavaScript a shot for now, but would love to do something like this for Rust, as that's what I'm currently learning.

P.S. I noticed that the ".loader-container" is generating moving vertical and horizontal scroll bars on 1920×1080 due to ".loader" rotating. Applying "overflow: hidden" seems to fix that.

readyoursicp said a month ago:

Thanks for the tip -- loader should be fixed now!

We don't have any plans to support Rust at the moment unfortunately, but your vote has definitely been noted!

mangatmodi said a month ago:

How about go? It is worthwhile to add most of the popular languages. I think you can lease env from spoj.com

amitport said a month ago:

this looks very nice. I hope you keep pushing it forward!


1 consider adding social sign-in. Why not? some people get scared when they need to enter a new password (+there are some nice auth-as-a-service out there)

2 there are too many animated buttons IMO (a few main ones are nice, but everywhere is too much)

3 small bug: you can see the solution when open a room but before you press 'join room'

4 when saving a profile change I get no indication of success / or redirect

jezclaremurugan said a month ago:

This is awesome. If you haven't thought about it - looks like you can compete with coderpad etc. for monetization.

tyiz said a month ago:

Login? Good Bye.

numlock86 said a month ago:

You logged in to HN to post this nonsense. What is your point?

sealthedeal said a month ago:

would love to see your traffic spikes and unique visitors by being posted to frontpage HN!

svapnil said a month ago:

this is awesome and can really make a different in peoples lives. nice work!

readyoursicp said a month ago:

Thanks for stopping by!

basilamer said a month ago:

Well done friend! This is super cool

spacetone said a month ago:

Super awesome. Are you going to open source the site so others can contribute to adding new features?

Shoot_The_Moon said a month ago:

I like the site - though the list of rooms took a while to load (~10 seconds - I don't know if that is normal)

VirtualQuery said a month ago:

yet another leetcode...

numlock86 said a month ago:

I thought I was quite familiar with leetcode. But this seems to be a different concept. Care to elaborate how this is "yet another leetcode"?

blondie9x said a month ago:

I’m not into the idea? Interviews are to gauge an individuals abilities. Why would you want to practice for an individual task where you will he expected to solve individually with a group? I think this is like studying in a group for a test. There is a huge risk you think you learn something but you don’t.

Studying for assignments in a group makes sense or comparing notes etc. but studying for an exam in a group or an interview doesn’t.

nostrebored said a month ago:

Afaik this is completely counter to modern educational findings. Group work helps to both motivate people and shore up gaps in understanding.

blondie9x said a month ago:

Can you cite one study that supports this claim?

numlock86 said a month ago:

Google (Scholar) just gave me thousands. I only skimmed through three, though.

blondie9x said a month ago:

Link please