Impact of the Ask Your Question box on question quality

January 12, 2013 at 16:55:27
Specs: Windows 7, Core2duo 2ghz / 4G

I haven't ask very many questions on C.N, but I just came to the conclusion that the way the question process is set up is a factor in the fractured quality of many of the questions. The Ask Your Question box looks and acts like a web search input box. You get the feel that you're entering search text and will get hits on the next page. Naturally, search strings are grammatically fractured.

If the users were aware that they actually were composing posts, I believe the quality of the questions would improve. True, that is pretty plain on the next page, but I think some amount of damage is already done by then.

BTW, I put this in "Rant House", but I'm not angry ;)

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January 12, 2013 at 19:24:24


I see your point, but I tend to disagree for a few reasons. First of all, there are quite a few javascript checks in the Ask Question sidebox that attempts to ensure the posting is of significantly quality. The posting needs to contain both a title and body of a certain length before it is allowed to go through the system. Secondly, users are asked to register after they fill out the Ask Question box. This pretty much ensures they understand they are creating a post. The vast majority of users who fill out that form without much thought do not continue with the process of registration.

I have closely been monitoring quality since the advent of that box, and I do not believe that it has been significantly diminished. As you may know, quality of questions is very important to me. I am continually trying to improve them. The last thing I'd want to do is decrease the quality.


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January 12, 2013 at 20:06:38

I think many posts appeared with even less information 15 years ago. Back then, this place was treated more as a chat room by many.

Some things, like folks hoping for instant gratification never change.

This place does as well as any and better than most digging out at least, some information.

Audares Juvo

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January 13, 2013 at 00:55:15

The only thing I can see, that could clarify things very very slightly. Is the title "Ask the Community", which could be changed to "Ask The Computing.Net Community"

Please reply and let us know if our help worked. Your feedback helps others. Maybe you?

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January 13, 2013 at 08:52:26

I admit that I see both sides of the responses. I have posted a couple of times, and it seems like the process is getting more specific(which is great).

A thought I had was that it might be nice to offer (optionally of course) to scan the computer during the question entering process. (and to be honest, I have already scanned mine, so I don't know if it does ask if they want to)

I only mention it because it is nice to look and see that the poster is using windows 7 vs something else.

:: mike

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January 13, 2013 at 13:08:33


Actually, the operating system of the user is automatically identified whether he runs a scan or not. The system always identifies that and, you'll notice, that every posting should have something for that filled in. Of course, the user can override it, so its not 100%.


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January 13, 2013 at 16:50:04

Thanks for the clarification. I was unaware. :).

:: mike

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