I have a question "How long can a programmer concentrate in a day" that was being closed for being off-topic.

In that question, I asked about the existence ( or lack of) of scientific study on then programmer's productivity. This is a clear, single-minded question with clear cut answers. But it is closed as not constructive. I think that the closure is not doing justice to the nature of the question.

I think it should be reopened. Moderators, please! Time to exercise your power and open the question to allow answers pouring in! I am sure a great many developers, Product Managers would be interested to learn these studies.

  • 6
    Two closed questions (yours and the one referenced in yours) and no moderator was involved in closing either one? What heresy is this? ;P
    – yannis
    Oct 6 '12 at 6:40
  • 2
    I think the close votes are casted mindlessly.
    – Graviton
    Oct 6 '12 at 6:42

Your question is a request for external resources on a very broad and vague subject. That by definition is Not Constructive:

  • There's no actual practical problem to be solved, and that's a requirement for all questions as per our FAQ.
  • The question is naturally attractive to equally valid answers, you give us absolutely no parameters to help us judge whether an answer referencing one study would be a better or worse answer than another one referencing a different study.

The vagueness of the topic alone could even justify closing it as Not A Real Question.

Furthermore there's no evident prior research or effort in your question. That usually would be a reason to downvote the question, not close it, but I'm mentioning it because some times prior research helps better define the question itself, and it might have helped it escape closure.

I don't see how the question could be improved without changing its core, all three answers are opinion heavy (again, a strong hint of a not constructive question), and all of them comment, implicitly or explicitly, on the vagueness of the topic and how productivity can't be easily quantified.

There are studies out there, for example this empirical study on Programming Language Fragmentation and Developer Productivity, but if you research the subject yourself you'll notice that the studies are sharply focused on specific aspects of productivity, and probably wouldn't be good answers to your question.

Sorry, won't be casting my re-open vote on this one.

  • 4
    Very well said, as usual... but that may not mean much coming from a mindless close voter :-)
    – Walter
    Oct 6 '12 at 13:34

While I'm not a close voter on this question, I would have been if I had looked at it before it was closed. Everything Yannis said is true, but the way the question is asked it looks like a poster child for LMGTFY type questions, which are bad and need to be killed with fire. In the future if you want to ask a question about finding data for X, please include why copy/pasting your question into Google or any other search engine doesn't help you.

  • 1
    I don't think the question can be answered by a simple google search; in fact, reading the answers on the question itself will tell you so.
    – Graviton
    Oct 9 '12 at 6:17
  • @Graviton - that may be true, but your question didn't indicate much research effort upon your part. There are some studies out there, specifically from the gaming industry and as part of a review of 40 hour work weeks. I think if you had demonstrated better due diligence in presenting your research then the question would have been better received.
    – user53019
    Oct 10 '12 at 18:13

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