Is this a good place to ask questions about the hidden features of programming languages and tools?

Our example: hidden features

  • We really need discuss this issue and take a definitive decision.
    – Maniero
    Commented Oct 5, 2010 at 20:44
  • @bigown there already was a pretty good consensus on the issue; when it's discussed (including in this question), the consensus has been that they're off-topic here.
    – user8
    Commented Oct 5, 2010 at 21:57
  • Didn't know this question was here when I posed my question (which is based on Mark's "what's on-topic & off-topic" question), but I agree with Lorenzo to wait till we're reaching the public non-beta phase. Or when others also ask the question and it would be bad from an user perspective to close them just to reopen them later... Yeah, it really depends on what exactly will happen at Stack Overflow once we go public. Commented Oct 5, 2010 at 22:58

6 Answers 6


If people on StackOverflow will ban hidden features from their allowed questions, we will accept them! Until then, I think that SO is the right place.

  • 2
    The problem is that some questions are closed, others aren't. This is need to be arranged with SO big guys.
    – Maniero
    Commented Sep 18, 2010 at 17:36

The biggest problem with "Hidden Features" questions on SO is that they tend to devolve into "favorite feature" discussions. Since examples of those questions already exist and are doing well here, there's no real reason to bother disguising them...


There's always going to be a grey area between SO and SE and I don't see that as a problem, as we are a different audience from SO.

Like it or not, whether or not something is subjective, is itself subjective. And unfortunately, the six subjective guidelines are merely guidelines and are themselves subjective so should not be used as a consensus for the group to make all further decisions.

What is everyone scared of? Let the questions stay for now. Vote a question up if you think it's useful and clear. Vote it down if you think it isn't useful. If these types of questions continually get voted down, then the community has decided that they are no good and then we'll start closing them. If they get voted up then the community likes them and they stay. Isn't that the whole point of having a voting system in the first place?


Hidden features questions generally provide one type of answer: a description of a quirky feature. This alone does not provide enough to satisfy the guidelines for subjective questions:

  • Answers rarely, if ever, provide a why or how behind the feature.
  • Answers rarely, if ever, have anything to do with a person's experience. They're just lists of what people opine to be "hidden".
  • Hidden features are little more than mindless, social fun: they amount to "hey, look at this neat thing I found." The quirkiest feature gets the most votes.

They don't belong here. Programmers.SE is no longer the dumping ground for every off-topic question on Stack Overflow merely because those questions are tangentially related to programming.


Any update on this? (I'm not putting this as a comment as that simply will not bump this)

My question seems still closed.


I think they are perfectly fine over there and don't fit this site well. My definition of this site is about the idea's of programming and other programming related stuff, but not actual code.

And besides, do we really want to move them all over here?

  • Great, an anonymous downvoter with no reason.
    – TheLQ
    Commented Oct 10, 2010 at 5:02

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