Before you link me to the page that explains the topics of the site, I've read it. But it seems extremely subjective and people who're doing the interpretation all seem to think just about nothing belongs here.

Let's have a look at what this site says is on topic here:

If you have a question about...

Software development methods and practices Requirements, architecture, and design Quality assurance and testing Configuration management, build, release, and deployment ...then you're probably in the right place to ask your question.

That descriptions says I can ask about software architecture. My question was clearly about software architecture. Machine code is still a real way people can develop software right? And I have to know what to call the aspect of software architecture to learn about it. Asking what things are called seems like a pretty valid question topic within software architecture.

1 Answer 1


Your question is not about architecture, it's about terminology. Questions about terminology aren't always on-topic. Even if the question is on-topic, people may still downvote if they feel that the question is, among other things, not generally useful to the broader community of software engineers.

  • 1
    The highest upvoted answer on the question you linked: "yes, absolutely, these questions are on-topic, and here's why I think so: knowing the right word enables you to find a precise definition, and to search through the literature for more background information" which is exactly what I asked for. CISC is an architecture for writing machine code. Therefore my question, if your linked question's top answer is a consensus to go by, should be on-topic here.
    – J.Todd
    Commented Oct 13, 2020 at 16:53
  • @J.Todd I see no evidence that your question is off-topic. However, I see 3 down votes, which could indicate that people just consider it to not show research effort, be unclear, or be generally not useful. I also see two close votes, one for career advice (I don't see how this applies at all) and one for being a resource request (I don't see it, but some of the wording in the question could probably be improved). Note that just because you are asking about a topic that is on-topic doesn't mean that your question will be well received or doesn't run afoul of a different rule.
    – Thomas Owens Mod
    Commented Oct 13, 2020 at 17:20
  • 1
    That's a fair assessment I believe, Thomas, but I think it indicates a slightly over-strict user-base in terms of accepting questions that even slightly deviate from the mainstream norm, and I'd just like to put it out there that it's a culture that leaves users with a bad experience here and not want to come back to continue participating. I'd like to point out the contrast to the culture on SO, where I can ask the most fringe, specific question that might be helpful to 1 in ten million coders, but the users there will upvote and helpfully answer, a trait that makes the community great.
    – J.Todd
    Commented Oct 13, 2020 at 17:26

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