Routing a Question to a Particular SO Member or Members
I came across a question today that I'm unable to answer myself but I know of another Stack Overflow user who is somewhat of an expert on the subject. Now, I wouldn't particularly want to go hunting around for his email address and harassing him off-site to see if he wants to answer the question, but it would be nice if I could poke him on the site or draw his attention to the question somehow.
Poking is perhaps taking the idea a bit far and I realise that getting alerted might not be everybody's cup of tea so I was thinking that, rather than alerting the user, suggested questions could appear either:
- highlighted on the homepage (with a different colour to favourite tags); or
- in a different tab or in the sidebar under a "Suggested questions" heading
The suggestion could disappear after a specific time period, after the question gets an accepted answer or if the user chooses to explicitly ignore it. If the user answers the question suggested to them, the suggesting user could also be notified to follow-up and up vote accordingly.
I'm fairly sure the user in question would have appreciated me pointing him in the direction of this question and he was browsing the site around the time. Of course, certain user groups wouldn't necessarily know my expertise so you could introduce limitations like minimum rep requirements. Taking limitations further would be to introduce "brogrammer relationships" whereby I could only suggest people I'd previously interacted with via questions/answers, votes and comments.
Potentially, such a feature could result in more "obscure" questions being successfully answered.