# Guide to Creating Problems

When you first set out to create a problem, whether it be your first or one of many, keep some of the following things in mind. These tips have served me very well and I wish the same for you:

• Imagine how people will respond before you post it. Think of how people will respond if you change certain parts.

• Appearance is key. Putting a picture in yours will make it more attractive to others. Make sure you use pretty LaTeX.

• Try to make it multi-step. Take a look at the difference between the following problems:

Problem 1: What is the hypotenuse of a triangle with legs 3 and 4?

Problem 2: Find the sum of the length and width of a rectangle with area 12 and diagonal of length 5.

Notice that these problems are both based on the Pythagorean theorem, but it is obvious that the second one is much more satisfying and interesting.

• Be inspired by other's problems. That doesn't mean just bluntly copying and pasting them as your own. Whenever you see a good problem, think about what makes it cool, and what makes it tick.

• Math class is a great time to think of problems. Take one of those boring questions your teacher gives you and turn it into something wonderful!

• Let your problems sit for a while before you publish them. There's nothing worse than a half-baked problem. Let your friends have a whack at it, and listen to their feedback.

• Combine elements from different areas into one problem. Take Algebraic Geometry and Combinatorial Geometry for example.

• Be clear, concise, and keep Shakespeare's quote in mind: "Brevity is the soul of whit". Wording can be the most difficult part of creating a problem.

I hope all of these suggestions and tips help! If you have others, or would like to ask questions, comment below! :D

Note by Finn Hulse
7 years, 2 months ago

This discussion board is a place to discuss our Daily Challenges and the math and science related to those challenges. Explanations are more than just a solution — they should explain the steps and thinking strategies that you used to obtain the solution. Comments should further the discussion of math and science.

When posting on Brilliant:

• Use the emojis to react to an explanation, whether you're congratulating a job well done , or just really confused .
• Ask specific questions about the challenge or the steps in somebody's explanation. Well-posed questions can add a lot to the discussion, but posting "I don't understand!" doesn't help anyone.
• Try to contribute something new to the discussion, whether it is an extension, generalization or other idea related to the challenge.

MarkdownAppears as
*italics* or _italics_ italics
**bold** or __bold__ bold
- bulleted- list
• bulleted
• list
1. numbered2. list
1. numbered
2. list
Note: you must add a full line of space before and after lists for them to show up correctly
paragraph 1paragraph 2

paragraph 1

paragraph 2

[example link](https://brilliant.org)example link
> This is a quote
This is a quote
    # I indented these lines
# 4 spaces, and now they show
# up as a code block.

print "hello world"
# I indented these lines
# 4 spaces, and now they show
# up as a code block.

print "hello world"
MathAppears as
Remember to wrap math in $$ ... $$ or $ ... $ to ensure proper formatting.
2 \times 3 $2 \times 3$
2^{34} $2^{34}$
a_{i-1} $a_{i-1}$
\frac{2}{3} $\frac{2}{3}$
\sqrt{2} $\sqrt{2}$
\sum_{i=1}^3 $\sum_{i=1}^3$
\sin \theta $\sin \theta$
\boxed{123} $\boxed{123}$

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This was a helpful guide, but how do you change the number of points the question gives, or other things like its topic or level?

- 6 years, 4 months ago

Very good! Thank you, it helped me.

- 7 years, 2 months ago

Write problems that make sense. No one will like your problem if they can't figure out what the heck you are talking about. If you try to trick people with your problem, it won't be good. Problems are meant to be solved, not deciphered.

- 7 years, 2 months ago

"Deciphered" :P Haha.

- 7 years, 2 months ago

Yup!

- 7 years, 2 months ago

That's what I'm doing for JOMO 3 :D

- 7 years, 2 months ago

Cool!

- 7 years, 2 months ago

Thanks!!.

- 7 years, 2 months ago

Great!

- 7 years, 2 months ago