Based on discussion in my earlier meta question and in the best-of specific chat room, it is clear that the community agrees that having a single "Best Puzzle of 2016" thread doesn't hold much value as 1) it's hard to compare wildly different puzzles in any meaningful way, and 2) it would be nice to be able recognise a broader selection of content from across the year. However, it is also clear that there is some differing opinion on how to break things down into appropriate categories...
Nominating and Voting on Categories
So, I'm posting this (hopefully) final meta thread with the aim of arriving at a definitive list of categories for the PSE annual "best of" recognition threads (I'm avoiding the word "awards" deliberately, see below).
All you need to do is look through the answers provided, and:
- Upvote the categories you would like to see included in the "Best of Puzzling, 2016" threads
- Downvote categories you don't want to see included, for whatever reason
- Add additional categories, if you feel they have value (I've already pre-populated a series of answers, which are the ones that received nominations/stars in the chat room, but that doesn't mean other new nominations aren't also valid/welcome)
If you have a particularly strong argument one way or another for any given category, it may be worth also adding a comment to the post to plead your case to others.
What Comes Next?
Once there's a clear list of community favoured categories, I'll create a meta-thread per category (exact cut-off criteria will be determined after we see how the voting falls, but I won't post anything without relatively strong community consensus). Each thread will then be run in a similar fashion to the current quarterly threads, except with the obvious difference that these threads will be restricted to their respective "category" and would be open to content across the entirety of 2016.
Also, as stated further up, I have moved away from using the term "award" as the general opinion of people seems to be that we shouldn't award a "tick" to any individual in these threads, and they should just remain as open/living posts with the natural vote-based sort order providing a rough approximation of "best" (again, similarly to the quarterlies).
Note: I deliberately didn't tag this best-of since this is meta-best-of and I don't want to pollute the tag search.