Meta Stack Exchange is where users like you discuss bugs, features, and support issues that affect the software powering all 158 Stack Exchange communities.

What is meta?
Here's how it works:
  1. Any Stack Exchange user can ask a question
  2. The community provides support, votes on ideas, and reports bugs
  3. Your voice helps shape the way Stack Exchange operates

Voted Down


These questions apparently have no place in Stack Overflow. I accept and understand that, a community has rules and reason. However, when I do manage to ask a question that is valid I find the responses to be somewhat overwhelming and helpful.

Is there anywhere on Stack Exchange to ask questions of a studious, curious nature? I quite often find that I do not know exactly what I should be asking in order to get the answer I need.

Is there a place on Stack Exchange where people who don't mind providing information to lesser experienced but keen programmers to provide the benefit of their experience?

share|improve this question
If you give our community a well articulated problem to solve, however basic, we'll solve it. One of the hidden gotchas of Stack Overflow is that it forces you to become a better writer. The better you can communicate, the more success you'll enjoy here. – Tim Post Sep 23 '11 at 11:07

Glancing at your questions, I don't think your level of experience was the reason they were downvoted and closed. They may have been poorly phrased though. It seems to me that you needed to get access to specific system services from C#, and failing that, wanted to know how to access them from C++. "How do I get access to service XYZ" is a fair question, neither ambiguous nor subjective.

My impression is that there are plenty of people on StackOverflow who are willing to help you out even when you're asking a basic question. In fact, it's often an easy way to gain reputation points. (Whether that is a good thing or a bad thing is debatable, but off-topic here).

As you indicate yourself, asking a good question can be difficult.
There are some guides on the net about asking the right question. Here's one from Jon Skeet

Learning how to ask the right question is work, but it should pay off in the end.


share|improve this answer

AFAIK, no, not at the moment. However, there's Area 51 where you can propose new SE sites.

However, it seems a similar proposal has been made (and closed) already:

share|improve this answer
Whoa that proposal would have been a disaster. Judging by that one example question, it looks like the proposer wanted that to be a code sharing site... I'm glad to see that it got burned to a crisp. – Jeff Mercado Sep 23 '11 at 8:41
@Jeff, yeah, I agree. However, that doesn't mean one couldn't make a good proposal for a homework-assistance type of Q&A site. I wouldn't frequent there probably, but that is not the point. Perhaps Dylan would like to invest some time in writing up a real proposal? – Bart Kiers Sep 23 '11 at 8:44
That would be an impossible task to make a successful one however. Personally I would probably join such a site for the idea alone. However, there will always be those who will come in and "ask for teh codez" and flood the site. That would drive me away immediately. Stack Overflow gets a lot of that already and it's taking its toll. – Jeff Mercado Sep 23 '11 at 8:49
We already have the "homework" tag, I don't think we need a specific homework-assistance Q&A site. – S.L. Barth Sep 23 '11 at 9:28
@S.L. Barth, I didn't say we need a homework-assistance Q&A. I said it could be proposed. – Bart Kiers Sep 23 '11 at 9:31
@Bart Kiers I see. It was an interesting idea btw, even if apparently neither of us sees the need for implementing it. – S.L. Barth Sep 23 '11 at 9:49
@BartKiers and S.L. Barth I was thinking along the lines of 'Could anyone suggest a...' or 'Is there any way to' etc where research may not have been effective because of the askers lack of knowledge in other areas relating to the eventual answer (just one example). Such questions would have to be subjective to an extent. Even if the question, read verbatim, doesn't make sense it is often possible tyo infer what the asker was asking. – Dylan Jackson Sep 23 '11 at 10:17
The problem with questions like this is that the real answer is not a solution to the immediate problem, but a introduction in how to approach to the answer yourself. And having to teach that over and over and over again is pretty much why forums failed to provide good programmer support (at least compared with the success level of SO). – Joachim Sauer Sep 23 '11 at 11:03
@Dylan Jackson: It seems to me that your questions, when asked, had not yet touched upon the heart of your problem. My advice would be to improve your ability to identify the problems that underlie your questions. I think that will serve you better than a forum for vague questions (apologies if I sound pedantic). It should be OK that you lack background knowledge, as long as you can show that you've done your research. BTW I can understand if you feel bad about those downvotes, but don't forget there were still people trying to help. – S.L. Barth Sep 23 '11 at 11:16

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .