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This question got me nostalgic about the days of built-in BASIC interpreters in home computers, and typing in programs from books (glory days!), then I remembered a series of books from my youth aimed at teaching BASIC to young kids. While I have a clear recollection of the content, I no longer remember titles or publisher.

Would asking about this on P.SE be on topic?

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    hmm Let’s Play The Guessing Game? The question owner tries to describe something they can’t quite remember, in hopes that the greater community will “buzz in” to hazard an answer based on the limited information provided... guessing game questions do not meet our goal of making the Internet better. Quite the opposite, in fact. – gnat Jun 8 '12 at 16:35
  • Curiously we have a lot of "identify this" questions, but they are mostly of the identify this design pattern / algorithm flavour. Books, no, it wouldn't work. – yannis Jun 12 '12 at 10:59
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No it wouldn't.

Other sites that have had "identify the X" (where X is a game, book or whatever) have found that they don't work with the Stack Exchange question and answer model.

They produce bad answers - which are basically guesses, and only really help the poster - which makes them incredibly localised.

Don't get me wrong, they're not necessarily bad questions - they might be a real problem you are facing, it's just that they really don't fit.

However, the chat room is probably the perfect place for such a question.

  • I agree with this, but don't forget that we also have a chat room, and I've seen at least 1 successful identify-that-book question come up there – Rachel Jun 8 '12 at 16:34
  • @Rachel - ooh, thanks for bringing up chat. – ChrisF Jun 8 '12 at 16:35
  • That's part of why I'm asking this. Adoption of the "identify x" tag is not uniform across SE. Movies and SciFi for instance allow these types of questions (for now at least), while Gaming doesn't. And I'm not aware of P.SE's stance in the debate. – System Down Jun 8 '12 at 16:38
  • @SystemDown - Gaming used to allow them but now doesn't. The literature site had problems with them and I believe they are less than universally welcomed on Movies and Sci-Fi. – ChrisF Jun 8 '12 at 16:40

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