Raad de band of het lied

Online music quiz and platform

Raad de band of het lied promo image

Raad de band of het lied (RDBOHL) was an online music quiz that ran for six years between 2009 and 2014, where each year was a new unique competition where users could compete which each other to reach the acclaimed first position in the Hall of Fame. Additionally, they could earn extra points by solving riddles and bonus questions.

The quiz consisted of riddles, which would depict either a band-, a song- or album name. Riddles were either images (showing an abstraction of the answer) or audio recordings (showing an "interpretation" of a song).

Members could submit their own riddles for additional bonus points.

The platform was entirely non-profit and contained no ads or banners.

The platform was fully accessible to non-registered users, but members had the benefit that apart from being eligible to appear in the Hall of Fame, they could also participate in member-only content, such as the forum where members could create topics, share videos, share stories, etc. Additionally, members could increase their position in the Hall of Fame by answering bonus questions.

Bonus questions were time restricted (where less time meant more awarded points) and came in the following flavours :

  1. Complete the missing words in the lyric
  2. Guess which song is played by a ukelele-rendition
  3. Show your knowledge of trivia by answering multiple choice questions

Beyond the homepage

The majority of the RDBOHL program was not directly visible:

  1. Pattern recognition for automated validation of user answers, taking typos into account
  2. Integrated mail notification service to inform registered users of competition related activities
  3. Automated award system for members who submitted their own riddles
  4. Copy writing : periodic mails as well as periodic forum posts by the administrator
  5. SEO : all content was indexed and instantly accessible, regardless of the single page JavaScript frontend
  6. To overcome the limitations of cheap hosting, repetitive database queries and results were cached and invalidated when appropriate.

Example content

Click / wait to change slide:

 

Entirely custom built

For maximum performance, the entire RDBOHL program was custom built, regardless of their frontend or backend layer.

All submitted answers, forum posts and awarded bonus points could be moderated from the custom CMS that was logging all user interactions to validate possible attempts at fraud.

A cron system would delegate custom operations (adding a new riddle from the queue, sending mail notifications, etc.) at given times of the day / workweek, etc.

All available routes were generated by the backend to keep all content accessible by the single page frontend indexed by search engines, as well as linkable.

The UI was mobile optimized making the platform fully accessible on tablets and phones.

 

Not everything was built from scratch though, so credit where credit is due: the following (excellent) libraries were integrated within the RDBOHL-framework:

PHPMailer used for the transport of mail notifications to registered users.

Greensock Animation Platform used to add eye candy to the user interface.

TinyMCE WYSIWYG editor used to generate semantically correct HTML from forum posts and inside the CMS as editor for the periodic mails sent to members.

The Facebook and Google+ login APIs were used to allow instant registration and login via these respective platforms.

Languages and technologies used:

PHP, MySQL, JavaScript, HTML, CSS, ActionScript 3.