Revision as of 17:43, 18 June 2011 by Dojo (talk | contribs) (Forums)
This page should really be made to describe how AoPS works. Feel free to contribute to it. Let's see, probably want to discuss post ratings and the stars by user avatars since those questions get asked a lot. Hmm, what else?


  • Can I change my user name?

No, this functionality is not enabled for both technical and abuse reasons. This is why when you register an account, it says in big, bold, red letters: Please choose your username carefully as you are not able to change it once registered.

  • What do the stars under my username next to a forum post represent?

These stars represent the number of posts you have made in the forum. As you make more posts, more of the stars will fill. You could figure out how many posts are necessary to achieve a certain amount of stars by looking at other users, or you could decide to leave it for your own surprise.

  • What is the difference between a forum, a thread, and a post?

Each blob of text that is posted by a user is a post. Posts that are grouped together (and numbered) make up a thread. A forum consisted of a catalog of all the threads within it.

  • If I make more posts, it means I'm a better user, right?

Post quality is more important than post quantity, which is the reason the rating system exists.

  • Who can see my post rating?

Only you, moderators, and administrators.

  • How do I get problems onto the contest page?

Make a topic for each question in the appropriate forum, copy/paste the urls to the National Olympiad. Your problems may eventually be submitted into the Contest page.

  • Can I be a moderator?

No. Asking to be one is a bad idea.


  • Where can I find past contest questions and solutions?

In the Contests section.

  • Who can I ask to add posts to the contests section?

Any one of the members in the the RManagers group.

  • What are the guidelines for posting problems to be added to the contests section?

Refer to the this post.


The Contests section works like this:
1. Someone posts a problem on the forums. Each problem, to go into the resources section, must have its own post because of technical restrictions.
2. An RManager takes the problem and puts it into the Contests section - each problem in there is linked to one post on the forums, as is each solution.
3. A PDF file is autogenerated for that contest on those dates.

If you want to get the problems you post put into the resources section:
1. Avoid any extraneous comments in the post that contains the information; reply with comments later.
2. Use the following format for answer choices for multiple-choice contests:

<math>\textbf{(A)}\ AnswerA \qquad
\textbf{(B)}\ AnswerB \qquad
\textbf{(C)}\ AnswerC \qquad
\textbf{(D)}\ AnswerD \qquad
\textbf{(E)}\ AnswerE</math>

3. Use LaTeX. 4. When making diagrams, use LaTeX's picture environment or (preferably) Asymptote. Don't link to an external site which will inevitably go down, and attachments won't show up in the resources section. If you absolutely can't reproduce the diagram using those two, upload it to a gallery and use that. However, these won't show up in the PDF.
5. Use the following format for problem sources:

Contest Year Day/Grade Round Problem X

So for example:
AMC 10 2008A Problem 1
AIME 2008I Problem 1
HMMT 2008 Algebra Problem 1
USAMTS 2008 Round 1 Problem 1
This makes it much, much easier to use Search to collect all the posts from a certain contest/year/day/grade in a single page, and thus much easier to put the contest into the Contests section. If you use something like 2008 AIME I, and I search for all problems with that in the title/subject description, the search will discard the I and only search for all posts talking about the "2008 AIME," not just the problems. It's a lot faster to enter problems from the search page than from a forum.

If you want to get your solutions posted:
1. Again, avoid extraneous comments; these can be posted in a separate reply.
2. (As always) hide your solution; the parser automatically strips out the hide tag, so it isn't an issue. The parser won't have trouble with unhidden solutions, so you should hide just for common courtesy.
3. Use LaTeX.
4. For diagrams, use Asymptote or LaTeX, for the same reasons as above.
5. Be clear and thorough.

  • How come the wiki is missing many contest questions?

LaTeX, Asymptote, GeoGebra

  • What is LaTeX, and how do I use it?
  • How can I download LaTeX to use on the forums?

There are no downloads necessary; the forums and the wiki render LaTeX commands between dollar signs.

  • How can I download LaTeX for personal use?
  • Where can I test LaTeX commands?

Sandbox or TeXeR.

  • Where can I find examples of Asymptote diagrams and code?

Search this wiki for the <asy> tag. See for example this article.


  • Guide for wiki syntax?

See wiki markup.


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