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Measuring progress
cavego
It's important to have some way to measure progress when doing anything.  With this project, the question is how to measure progress in reading ability?

Game results are a poor metric.  First of all, they don't provide that much information until you have a lot of games.  Also, if you are following the cavego rules, you're playing very few if any games.  Subjective feelings don't really count.

What is needed as a systematic way of knowing that reading has improved.

Fortunately, there is goproblems.com and SmartGo (which contains problems from goproblems.com).  Although this is not the perfect problem set, one advantage it is that the problems are graded by the number of players who solve them correctly.  This is a better metric than an author's subjective feeling for the difficulty of a problem.

What I do when I want to measure my progress is the following:

1. I launch SmartGo Kifu and select problems at the level I was last working on, say, 3k.
2. If I solve 3 problems in a row correctly, I self-promote.  So, if I was working on 3k problems, I start working on 2k problems.
3. If I get 3 problems in a row wrong, I self-demote.  If I started at 3k, I will shift back to unsolved 4k problems.

I've noticed that if I do this for a long period of time, my results get worse due to fatigue, so I don't do that.  Also, I don't want to exhaust the problems at a given level, so I use this mostly for measurement and not for training.

Currently, I don't set any particular time limit, but I do impose the rule that I have to solve the problem in my head first rather than just clicking around.

For many years, I have found that the measured level is very close to my playing level and changes in my ability to solve problems correlate directly with improvements or degradation in my game results.

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