There's two questions:

How come one is still open, and the other one closed? I ask because both seem to me to be mere curiosity questions.

  • 1
    The ultimate answer to all of the "why was x closed and not y?" Is that we don't have a single person doing the closing. Closing can be subjective and there are a variety of people doing it. Also, personally, I've been hesitant to close questions that seem to be popular even if they meet the close criteria.
    – JohnFx
    Feb 5, 2011 at 18:45
  • @joh Well, sometimes someone can highlight why one post rocks and another doesn't. So, I disagree about the ultimate answer thing. Also, I suppose meta should help us agree on such criteria (close reasons), to avoid this subjectivity.
    – tshepang
    Feb 6, 2011 at 20:18

2 Answers 2


Because worst software bug can, in fact, be measured -- how much damage did the bug cause in billions of dollars? How many children were killed by this bug? Did the company go out of business because of it?

Whereas favorite programming language -- how exactly do you measure a favorite? This is just "what's your favorite color?" in pure form.

If you can't see the difference, you're not looking hard enough. Try harder.

  • If someone says "it's my favorite language because I'm more productive in it", does that count as measurable?
    – tshepang
    Jan 28, 2011 at 15:29
  • 5
    As hard as I try, I don't see how either question fit this part of our FAQ: "You should only ask practical, answerable questions based on actual problems that you face. Chatty, open-ended questions diminish the usefulness of our site and push other questions off the front page." Can you explain it to me?
    – user8
    Jan 28, 2011 at 17:41
  • @mark if you were analyzing the consequences of a major bug in, say, Stack Overflow -- it might be fair (albeit very blue-sky) to consider the extremes of what a bug could cost us as a company, or me as a co-founder, or another fellow developer.. I'll agree it's on the edge of what should be allowed, but I believe it's measurable and somewhat practical to consider the real world consequences when we screw up. As I like to say, "we're not a bank", but if we were, how would the consequences of our bugs change how we develop? Jan 28, 2011 at 23:01
  • 1
    If I see language X rated very high (with appealing reasons why it rocks), I just might get convinced to give it a try. How come that doesn't count as enough of an advantage, than some arbitrary worst software bugs list_of_X? Seriously, I just think you are expressing mere preference (prejudice?). I admit that favorite software is broader though, so that counts a bit against it.
    – tshepang
    Jan 29, 2011 at 0:24
  • @tshe they are both marginal, to be clear, but the measurement of the worst software bug, and the idea that programmers need to consider the consequences of their professional actions, puts it on the other side of the line to 'acceptable' Jan 29, 2011 at 0:34
  • I see. These are essentially similar questions, but distinguished by degree. I'm going to nit-pick a bit here, at the risk of going off-topic. Imagine one the answerers of favorite language said it's harder to produce insecure code with language X, and many readers find it to be true after trying it out. That's one possible outcome of that thread. One possible outcome of worst software bug is... ummmm... people will try produce less bug-free code? Sorry I see nothing but mere curiosity, so no I don't buy your argument.
    – tshepang
    Jan 29, 2011 at 0:59
  • @Jeff I think I get it now; thanks for the explanation.
    – user8
    Jan 29, 2011 at 5:48

Check out this 'discussion' or lack there-of.

It's pretty clear that 'favorite' is one of those keywords that doesn't hit the filter (least favorite or most favorite doesn't matter)

My suggestion would be to either take your chances and use the queen's english "favourite" (which according to my Fedora Spin, is in fact the correct spelling) or just replace the word with "Won the most awards" or "Killed the most people"

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