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I was on another Stack Exchange site earlier and I looked up the 'hot questions' that you can see in the notifications bar in the top-left. I noticed that there was a gaming question there.

From looking at this, I can't tell which game this applies to or whether I care:

What game is this?

(Apologies for the terrible freehand circle - it's my first time.)

Surely it would be better if it was instead titled:

portal - How to get out of chamber 3?

Now I know that putting tags in titles is generally against Stack Exchange policy, but this kind of information is not useful. The solution to this would be to prepend the game title tag automatically.


EDIT: After reading a bit of the Gaming meta, you guys appear to be having issues with the limitations of tagging as it applies to the Gaming Stack Exchange site. While I don't want to pollute this page with the discussions that are happening over there, I'd like to mention that having a tag e.g. [tag-game:portal] would be immensely useful for this feature request.

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migrated from Dec 9 '11 at 9:36

This question came from our discussion, support, and feature requests site for passionate videogamers on all platforms.

Loving the freehanded circle. Migrated here as it's a network feature. – badp Dec 9 '11 at 9:35
I guess "DDM" is "drop-down menu" and "S" is "StackExchange", but what's the "C"? – balpha Dec 9 '11 at 10:15
I thought the official designation was "StackExchange™ MultiCollider SuperDropdown™" so, SEMCSD? – tombull89 Dec 9 '11 at 10:46
@balpha Oh, I was thinking to "Stack Exchange Collider DropDown Menu" or "SuperCollider DropDown Menu." :-) – kiamlaluno Dec 9 '11 at 10:53

I've noticed that today:

enter image description here

That Gaming.SE question caught my eye, interesting title, but when I clicked on it I found out it's a question about Minesweeper. Minesweeper!?!?!? Oh, the madness... ;P

I think we could work the question's tags in there, as we do in, something like:

enter image description here

That way I'd never have to waste a click on a Minesweeper question. There might be a width issue there for questions with lengthy tags and we could:

  • Only show the most popular of the tags, or
  • Hide site name and show the tags on hover (yay! moar jQuery), or
  • As you suggest, prepend a tag to the title.
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I've posted this as a separate feature request, but after @TimStone found this strongly related question (read:dupe), I've moved it here as an answer. – Yannis Jun 2 '12 at 21:45

I'm strongly against this. The SuperCollider MultiDropdown is already used for too much stuff and is already suffering from website-in-a-website syndrome, and cramming more information into it just makes an already-noisy place even more noisier.

Let's say you implement this change on the grounds that a title doesn't say enough about a question to determine whether one should click through. You and Yannis's answer both call out Gaming.SE's questions being the impetus for this feature, but you admit Gaming.SE has its own problems with tags. So what happens when the tags don't tell enough of a story, either?

It seems the next logical step is to include an excerpt! Surely the combination of title, site name, tags, and excerpt will give enough of a picture. Now we have a replica of the main Stack Exchange site except in a 460 × 220 pixel box. How convenient! What other websites can we shove into a tiny box?

The SuperCollider MultiDropdown is only useful insofar as it's a quick—not comprehensive—glance at data: you get just enough of a taste of content to entice you to click through. If you're going to the Hot Questions list there, you're already predisposed to blindly clicking on links that seem interesting and it's fulfilled its purpose: to get you to check out other sites on the network.

In reality, I think this feature request ignores the real problem: bad or misleading titles. Bad titles are bad everywhere: whether they appear in the SuperCollider MultiDropdown, on Stack Exchange's website, or on the specific Stack Exchange site on which they were asked.

If a title is misleading or unclear, it really should be edited and improved. And if that happens, the problem goes away.

There was a contention that maybe you don't know enough about the site to suggest an edit, but I don't buy that. Consider the workflow:

  1. You know that the SuperCollider MultiDropdown is clickable and contains the Hot Questions list.
  2. You browse through the list and see a title that interests you, knowing that it appears in the context of a specific site.
  3. You click through and understand the question enough to be annoyed/disappointed that you wasted n seconds clicking through to something about a question you don't like.

If you're already invested in clicking through to the question and know enough about the subject matter to react to it being a misleading or bad title, you have both the means and the ability to suggest a better title that helps everyone in every context, including the SuperCollider MultiDropdown.

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I think the difference is that it's not a bad title when given the context of the tags. Asking How to get out of chamber 3? without context is not helpful. I agree that the example listed in Yannis' post is a poor title for a Minesweeper strategy question. – Bringer128 Jun 5 '12 at 4:48
With that said, the point of tags is to allow people to filter searches and views of the website, including subscribing to a tag. This means that the normal case is a user following a tag on an SE site, which still applies to Gaming.SE. We are at an impasse, where Gaming.SE doesn't want to pollute their pages with game names in titles, and non-Gaming.SE sites don't want to pollute the "hot questions" drop-down with tags. I maintain that the problem comes from expecting context from tags on a standard SE page and assuming that the title alone provides enough context in "hot questions" dropdown. – Bringer128 Jun 5 '12 at 4:57

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