community April 26, 2009

Joke Questions: Please Refrain

The problem of joke questions has come up more than a few times now, so it’s worth going over how we will handle them. In a nutshell, please do not post joke questions. What do I mean by joke question? It’s a question that.. Looks authentic, but is a parody of a real question. Describes…
Avatar for Jeff Atwood
Co-Founder (Former)
community April 23, 2009

Comments: Top n Shown

You’ll notice that the top 5 comments are now shown under each question or answer. If you want to see all the comments, or add a comment of your own, clicking will load the rest and reveal the comment entry box. The flagging and voting tools are still there for each comment, but require a…
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Co-Founder (Former)
community April 22, 2009

How Many Questions are Closed or Deleted?

Based on the discussion about The Stack Overflow Question Lifecycle, which I’d characterize very broadly this way… Programming Related Question -> Answers! Non-Programming Related Question -> Closed -> Deleted (eventually, depending) … I thought it would be a good idea to couch the discussion in terms of actual data. Here’s a breakdown of all the…
Avatar for Jeff Atwood
Co-Founder (Former)
community April 17, 2009

The Stack Overflow Question Lifecycle

Apparently some users who really should know better are confused about the way Stack Overflow works. I take this as a sweeping indictment of our current FAQ (both official and unofficial) and I will work to correct this situation — starting with this blog post. Stack Overflow is, at its heart, a Question and Answer…
Avatar for Jeff Atwood
Co-Founder (Former)
community April 16, 2009

Comments: Now with Flags and Votes

In tonight’s code push, we added the ability to vote for comments, and flag comments if they are inappropriate. Some ground rules: There is no downvoting of comments, only upvotes. Comment votes do not affect comment sort order. No reputation of any kind is earned or lost from comment votes. Each user gets 5 comment…
Avatar for Jeff Atwood
Co-Founder (Former)
company April 14, 2009

Logo Contest Winner for serverfault.com

The logo design contest for serverfault.com is now complete. The winner was Joshua Cliff, with entry #184. What I liked about this logo is the thematic similarity to Stack Overflow, while invoking the idea of a server rack along with a graphic equalizer style health readout for the fault. Congratulations to Joshua, who describes himself…
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Co-Founder (Former)
community April 13, 2009

Stack Overflow Voting Pattern Analysis

Stack Overflow user John Cook recently wrote a blog entry analyzing Stack Overflow reputation scores: The reputation scores follow the expected power law distribution. No surprise there, of course. John explains: This graph was based on a snapshot of the user reputations one day last week. The largest group, 15,219 users, had reputation less than…
Avatar for Jeff Atwood
Co-Founder (Former)
community April 11, 2009

Raising a Red Flag

Are you familiar with the way craigslist handles post flagging? Based on recent feedback, we’re enhancing Stack Overflow’s flagging support to bring it more in line with that well established model. We belatedly realized that asking users to email us to report content problems on the site* was not exactly efficient. Now you can flag…
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Co-Founder (Former)
community April 8, 2009

In Defense of Editing

Editing is the backbone of Stack Overflow, and probably (along with the reputation system) one of the single most important distinctions between Stack Overflow and “just another forum”. What’s so special about editing? You might as well ask what’s so special about editing on Wikipedia? Uh… everything? As it says in the FAQ: Other people…
Avatar for Jeff Atwood
Co-Founder (Former)
community April 6, 2009

A Day in the Penalty Box

Are you familiar with the Penalty Box? The penalty box (sometimes called the sin bin, bad box, or bin) is the area in ice hockey, rugby football and some other sports where a player sits to serve the time of a given penalty, for an offense not severe enough to merit outright expulsion from the…
Avatar for Jeff Atwood
Co-Founder (Former)
community April 5, 2009

What Stack Overflow Can Teach You

We get wonderful emails from programmers almost every week, programmers who are impressed with the effectiveness of Stack Overflow and the platform agnostic community spirit it embodies. We consider ourselves very fortunate to be in a position to get such email, and we greatly appreciate each and every one of them. I always reply and…
Avatar for Jeff Atwood
Co-Founder (Former)