Hot answers tagged

36

It's the downside of success: this site is growing, and that means we're attracting more and more people who don't necessarily know what they're doing. Seeing a sloppily-worded question lowers my urge to help, too. The less well-worded a question is, the higher the chance is that I'll simply ignore it when I'm browsing the question list. If I do decide to ...


24

The most important thing for a new user asking a question is to get answers. When someone's first contact with the site is to ask a question, that's usually because they have a problem to solve, not because they want to join a community. Joining a community comes later, if the community has proven to be useful or interesting. So when evaluating questions ...


16

Leave the original in place and try and make it so that it's as clearly in line with the A's. Then start a new Q and post your learnings as a new A. Also reference the original so that others see the linkages.


16

I agree with improving existing answers; so does the help center: When should I edit posts? Any time you feel you can make the post better, and are inclined to do so. Editing is encouraged! Some common reasons to edit are: to fix grammatical or spelling mistakes to clarify the meaning of a post without changing it to correct minor ...


15

There are many more important peeves. Useless uses of cat are harmless and are often clearer. Reserve your wrath for things that actually matter, such as unquoted variable expansions in shell snippets. If I see a suggested edit that solely removes useless uses of cats, I'll reject it as too minor. Perhaps even as invalid if I'm in a rejecting mood. If you'...


15

Editing could well be done by moderators, but there's only a few of us and there's a lot of other users that edit questions too. Editing is done to correct formatting issues that otherwise would potentially make a question (or answer) difficult to read, and sometimes we correct spelling mistakes and grammar, or we move clarifying information from comments ...


14

I have been doing my share of i -> I changes and I feel your pain. We all make mistakes, especially if English is not the first language, but consistency in spelling is something one can expect IMO. (The other thing that greatly annoys me is having no spaces behind punctuation, or having some before punctuation (assuming reading from left to right)). I was ...


13

Tags help display questions to the right people. They don't mainly function to describe a question. Tags are mainly additive, not subtractive. People follow tags to hear about new questions in those tags. Its possible to ignore tags as well, but that's only kali-linux ;-). So for the most part, adding a tag adds audience; removing a tag removes audience. ...


12

In most cases I prefer that the links be converted to text too; I'd rather see: I followed the instructions on the Arch Linux wiki than: I followed the instructions on https://wiki.archlinux.org/ I certainly don't see a problem with it; if you really want the URL you can mouse-over it, but it's usually clear where it's leading. On the other hand, ...


12

I'm going to take your 2 questions in reverse order. Perhaps there should be a way to gently tell the editor to post the edits as a new answer. As far as I can tell the current interface doesn't allow that though. Comments? Sure there is, you can leave them a comment to this effect. Comments & the chat room (to a lesser degree) are the 2 tools at ...


12

I had a similar discussion on Meta SO some time ago. Quite frankly: I consider the SO position dumb. On both Ask Ubuntu and Unix & Linux (I find both these sites are very similar when it comes to editing), several answers have been edited (even extensively) by multiple editors over time. If I see an edit that simplifies commands in a post, or provides ...


10

As the site is a wiki and subsequent edits are transparent, rather than just commenting I think people should edit the offending answers (or questions) and save a feline. This has the benefit of ensuring that, as a learning resource, the site maintains unimpeachable standards and—strictly as a by-product, continues to be a welcome habitat for the ...


10

In general, no. Editing each other's posts is a big part of the site, and we can't really be clearing every website with the post author before linking to it, particularly well-known sites like Wikipedia. In this case the links seem pretty unnecessary though, we don't need to link every phrase in a post to the corresponding Wikipedia entry.


10

You can make many improvements to questions, but you should leave the intent of the OP as is. And diversity can be of interest as well. What you might consider as "The OP doesn't know what their problem is" might be because of you and the OP having a different background. I, e.g., tend to use the word directory and tend to think of Folder as some beginner (...


10

Maybe not an answer for the exact situations you're encountering, but from the little German I've learned, I know Germans capitalize nouns. So, maybe they would have a tendency to write something like "I ate some Fish at my Parents' house". Perhaps there's a pattern in the "random" words you're seeing? From other experiences, I think that people who come ...


8

You get a reputation bonus for editing only when your edit is reviewed by other uses and approved. You don't get a reputation bonus when your edit is immediately taken into account with no one reviewing it. At 2k reputation, you get the privilege to edit questions and answers without supervision. So you no longer get reputation from such edits. At 20k ...


8

I very much agree. This is a technical site, and we have a technical audience. Replacing the link text with something other than the URL should only happen if there's a significant improvement in readability/flow and if the text provides more information than the bare link. For links to wikis, bug trackers, and top-level sites (say, for example, https://unix....


8

I don't know exactly who you're talking about (and I have an idea who) but removing those items is perfectly fine, IMO. So what if he get's 2 points in this manner per edit, as soon as he gets to 2K that incentive goes away and if he continues then he's providing a service, which may be viewed as low value, but non the less it's providing the site with "some"...


8

First of all, mods can't see who voted on what. That is confidential and only available to SE employees. Also, since you mention it, what you did is a clear abuse of the flagging system. As you figured out, it doesn't work that way and please don't do it again. Now, your question got 4 downvotes and 3 upvotes. That means a net reputation change of +7. Not ...


8

That would indeed have been a good edit to make but you're quite right that it would have looked strange at first glance. I have now removed the second, misleading question from the post. Thanks for bringing it up.


8

If harmonized file names are really useful to follow the question and answers, then please do harmonize them. Pick a sensible set, preferably the one in the question, failing that one used in an answer. Which answer doesn't really matter. Harmonized file names don't always matter. If there's just one input file and one output file, it's easy enough to ...


8

Partly echoing Kusalananda's words, I would add a couple of remarks I hope can be of help. First, don't take edits personally. The Stack Exchange platform aims to be unique1: This design choice works well in producing both high quality content and initially puzzled users. Yes, your questions belong to you and, yes, answers should try to solve the issues ...


7

Yes, I think it's both appropriate and helpful, and you can flag comments as obsolete after making the edit. This isn't a discussion forum, and we should aim for improved questions rather than a back-and-forth in the comments. Be careful, though, when the question starts off general but still answerable in a useful way, and it gets answers, but then the ...


7

Well, first off, that user is not a new user having started with Stack Overflow 2 years ago. That said, I don't think there is any reason to avoid improvement via editing for posts from new users. In fact, there is a review queue for first posts from new users (link requires 500 rep). One of the things you're encouraged to do is edit posts to improve them. ...


7

I think your reaction is both disproportionate (it certainly doesn't warrant the sort of emotive language you used: it's the Internet, it's not personal), and misguided. The user (whoever they are) deserves the reputation for their contribution. In all communities, there are a wide range of roles where people can volunteer their time, commensurate with ...


7

You don't need to edit to view the source. Get the post ID (click on share, or look at the question URL, note the first number). For your question, that would be 3559. Go to <site.name>/posts/<ID>/revisions (https://unix.meta.stackexchange.com/posts/3559/revisions, for your question). Click on the source link next to the revision number. (https:...


7

The edit summary should explain to the author of the post and to anyone else who reads it why the edit was made. So, instead of writing "plz help me" there, write something like "Removed irrelevant text" or "There's no reason to write things like 'pls help me'" or some other informative message. The idea is that the user whose post you edited will be able ...


7

Your version loses the line breaks, which makes it much harder to read than the edited versions. Compare your version: with this edited version:


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