Episode #125 of the Stack Overflow podcast is here. We talk Tilde Club and mechanical keyboards. Listen now
164

I agree with this open letter. I guess it's more directed at the people potentially answering this kind of thoughtless questions, because the people asking them -- more often than not Help Vampires -- will never read meta, or the FAQ, or try to understand the issues involved. So I guess it could be rephrased to say: "potential answerers, don't encourage ...


38

An Open Response Does this belong on P.SE meta? If so, should we expect and accept similar posts from other users? Chances are, the students who paste homework don't read P.SE meta. Your evidence in anecdotal. I could offer a story of how my education was saved by scooping the answer to a stubborn problem from the interwebs, which gave me time to focus on ...


37

It looks like the questions you've asked lie in the overlap between SO and PSE. Both sites could answer them, but they would give different kinds of answers, and since SO is bigger its answers will show up faster. In my opinion, the three questions you've linked are all slightly more appropriate for SO, because they cannot be generalized to apply to ...


31

The questions which are most welcome here are those which come from real software projects, related to real problems which arise inside the project. It does not matter if it is a commercial project, or a hobby project, or if the topic of the project is very specialized, as long as it is an answerable, on-topic question with a reasonable focus. Opposed to ...


23

Of your 9 non-deleted questions, all of them have a net positive score and none of them are closed. Two of them are also marked as a favorite question by at least 1 person, with one being marked as a favorite by 3 people. Most of the questions have a solid view count - the lowest one (and also the most recent) has 50 views, and several have over 150 views. ...


22

Let's get the most important point out of the way first, and it is this: You can still benefit from the information on the closed post That's right; the question, and all eight answers that were posted to it, are still there, information waiting to be consumed by anyone who wants to read it. Now that that's out of the way... Stack Exchange is not a ...


20

The best thing to clarify things for new users would be to rename this site. I am relatively new here and I understand the distinction between Programmers.SE and StackOverflow, but I think many new users don't. If this site was named "Software Design" or something similar I think much of the junk on "Programmers" would go away. The name "Programmers" is ...


18

The Summer of Nonsense Personally I consider the Summer of Love a mostly failed campaign, especially when it comes to the smaller sites of the network (I don't know if it benefited Stack Overflow, and I don't really care). Most people fixate on the whole "niceness" theme and forget that actively trying to help an asker, even just a tiny bit and even if only ...


15

Another option would be to add your update as an answer, as it's somewhat of a solution to the problem you had a year ago. Right now your update wouldn't really stand as an answer, but if you feel like expanding it a bit with details of the process the company followed, and adding a couple of references (perhaps to the other answers that helped you the most),...


15

I would appreciate it if everyone, before over-hastily voting to close any question with the buzzword "design pattern" in it as being a dupe of Choosing the right design pattern, would first take a deep breath count to ten, and think twice how the question changes when replacing "design pattern" by "design approach". If the question makes more sense then,...


13

Can Questions be Reopened After They've Been Closed by Some Self Appointed Gestapo Moderators? Certainly. At 3000 reputation, people can vote to reopen a question. Granted, 3000 is also the level that Gestapo Moderators can vote to close the question. Who decides what is a "real" question or topic of interest? The community. Questions like this ...


13

I think if a student is so lazy that they ask homework questions on this site, they are definitely too lazy to read this long open letter. Plus, this sort of thing should be directed at the people who answer homework problems. If people would simply refuse to answer obvious homework problems, the incentive to ask them will be removed.


13

A good interview question does not have an answer that the candidate knows; the candidate is expected to be able to discuss different options, with some options being thrown in by the interviewer. The questions is asked to find out how (or if) the candidate thinks, not to get an answer to the asked question. On SE sites questions are asked to get answers ...


13

In addition to the excellent answer by @lxrec, Programmers is so much smaller than StackOverflow that you just have to have a bit more patience. It is not uncommon to only receive answers after several hours or even a day, where questions on SO get answers within seconds.


12

There exists a grace period for 5 minutes after the first submit that rolls all edits in that time into the original post so they don't count so you can make those quick minor edits. Otherwise start taking advantage of the instant preview it works great and it seems pretty crazy that you prefer more clicks to format your answer. Also please note that posting ...


11

Programmers, as well as Stack Overflow have their own areas of concern. These are details in the different FAQ sections of each site - questions get downvotes in these sites for many different reasons: Question may be off topic (as detailed in the FAQ) It may be a bad question (that is, very unclear) A question could be starting an argument (again, against ...


11

Migration for questions older than 60 days is disabled (even for mods). It's not that we don't want to move it, we can't. If you feel it's a good question for the Workplace, you should re-ask it there (but please search for existing duplicates first).


10

Part 1: statistics (Skipping over the lies and damn lines) Programmers has one of the highest all-time average score on questions of all sites. Out of 34 launched sites (I'm excluding metas), only Skeptics, RPG, SF&F and CSTheory have a higher average. If you count the all-time average number of votes (this query conflates questions and answers), ...


10

Let me start by giving just a little bit of background. A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away I was a moderator myself. My job as moderator was a bit different from moderators here though -- as moderator I was absolute dictator. I was free to make essentially any rules I wanted. I suspect that total freedom led to a bit of soul searching about the role ...


10

I think that it is important to get feedback on how the answers applied and if they helped out. It is good to know if the answers are not just voted up and accepted, but that they made a difference for the questor in the real world. This information may be localized and perhaps useless to most people however. If you are just chatting then it best belongs ...


10

Discussions should be closed as they fit the definition of not constructive. Not only is it mentioned explicitly in the FAQ, but there's an entire blog post on the Stack Exchange blog about it. If you want to have a discussion with other users, we do have a chat room - all Stack Exchange sites tend to have at least one for the site. However, you need 20 ...


10

My personal 2 cents... stop downvoting people who post on meta trying to get questions fixed. That's what stopped me a while back from doing it. It became such a chore to constantly feel like I'm fighting for something that none of the active users wanted, and to always be downvoted for my efforts by the same group of users. -2 (+1/-3): What needs to be ...


10

What's the best screw driver to use on a nail? A hammer. Some of the best answers on this site reject the premise of the question. I completely agree that "give me the pattern" questions can be problematic. We should close them when nothing useful to the site can be made of them. But some can be redeemed with the right answer that points other lost souls ...


9

I don't see this as a real issue. I guess we could block people from accepting answers for X days or hours, but the immediate downside to this would be that even more 1st time users wouldn't return to select an accepted answer. Or they would just realize once they start asking more questions and people point out their poor accept rate to them (or they might ...


9

Assuming that your question falls within the guidelines in our FAQ for what is considered on-topic and that your question makes it clear what you have already tried or already considered, I don't see why a question would not be allowed simply because it's a homework issue. Also relevant is a discussion about homework questions on Programmers.


9

I've only been an active SE user for a couple of weeks, and since PSE is my favorite one I've been mulling this question over pretty much the entire time (not to mention reading far too many meta posts). Some days it feels like we're closing too aggressively. Some days it feels like you need a bachelor's in Q&A philosophy to tell what actually is on-...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible