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

How addicted to Stack Overflow are you really?

I've recently realized that I'm getting really addicted to these sites (especially SO) for various reasons.

  1. I feel like I've failed myself when a day passes and I didn't reach my 200 reputation cap. (maybe that's a small exaggeration)

  2. I've build a widget that shows my reputation directly on my desktop, updated every 10 minutes (top center):



      So the question is, how addicted are you to Stack Overflow?

Download Widget

The widgets are powered by my Image Based Flair (Source) PHP Script.

share|improve this question

closed as not constructive by Rosinante, animuson, ЯegDwight, Lucifer, Madara Uchiha Mar 15 '13 at 20:23

As it currently stands, this question is not a good fit for our Q&A format. We expect answers to be supported by facts, references, or expertise, but this question will likely solicit debate, arguments, polling, or extended discussion. If you feel that this question can be improved and possibly reopened, visit the help center for guidance.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

Where'd you get that background? – Spencer Ruport Aug 1 '09 at 20:50
@Spencer Ruport: A New Dawn by Burning-Liquid: – Andrew Moore Aug 1 '09 at 21:20
wow. just ... wow. – Jeff Atwood Aug 1 '09 at 22:00
more important question is, will you link to your widget so we can use it? – StevenMcD Aug 1 '09 at 22:07
Finally a question on meta worthy of an upvote! – juan Aug 1 '09 at 22:12
@FailBoy: The link is right below the closeup. – Andrew Moore Aug 1 '09 at 22:17
@Jeff: Wow the custom flairs or wow the additions? – Andrew Moore Aug 1 '09 at 22:29
@Andrew Moore Are you just waiting for one of the top Gold badges to have a number next to it other than 0? – Tyler Carter Aug 2 '09 at 0:29
Definitely addicted here, but I am WAAY too newb in the world of serverfault to answer anything there. – TM. Aug 27 '09 at 2:55
This is positive addiction. For a good cause I appreciate it. – Avatar Aug 21 '10 at 21:19
Linux version of the client ? Edit: I found this – Chris Aug 26 '10 at 19:18
You should take a break. Addictions are bad, and even the quality of your answers and behavior on the site will decrease if you visit it too much. – user139018 May 1 '11 at 21:35
just one more edit, then I can sleep o.O – Merlin Nov 20 '11 at 2:44
Even on Facebook lately, I've been starting to call people the "OP" – Jerry Dodge Apr 24 '13 at 22:05
@JerryDodge, and I'm asking What Have You Tried? when people ask me to like some thing ;) – Amit Joki Mar 14 '14 at 5:04

44 Answers 44

I'm not an addict. I can stop anytime I want!

share|improve this answer
Same for me. Which I demonstrate by stopping at least three times a day. – Gert Arnold Aug 28 '12 at 17:54
IM NOT ADDICTED! – Ian Chu Te Mar 3 '15 at 13:32

Stack Overflow is referred to around the house as 'that website.'

share|improve this answer
LOL! Hilarious. – KyleFarris Oct 27 '09 at 20:44

I'm on Meta. On a Saturday morning. Need I say more?

share|improve this answer
Damn, I was going to say this exact same thing. – TheTXI Aug 1 '09 at 18:53
Is it worse on a Sunday? – Rowland Shaw Aug 2 '09 at 8:35
@TheTXI sarnath'd? :) It's Sunday and I'm on Stack Overflow hahaha – user132619 Aug 2 '09 at 18:52
Actually, I managed to stay off yesterday (except just enough to keep my streak alive). There is hope for me yet! – mmyers Aug 3 '09 at 14:31
Why, Meta is only good on your work paid hours ? :] – Gnoupi Aug 31 '09 at 15:22

I've managed to break the addiction recently, but back in November I gained 200 reputation points on my wedding day, and on each day of my week-long honeymoon.

share|improve this answer
And your wife still speaks to you? I'm impressed! – mmyers Aug 4 '09 at 19:19
@mmyers: Lucky for me, she likes to sleep late. :) – Bill the Lizard Aug 4 '09 at 19:23
wow... seriously... wow – Nathan Koop Sep 4 '09 at 18:50
I would have needed a lawyer! – Marc Gravell Oct 2 '09 at 5:50
I would have needed a coroner! @_@ – Kyle Rozendo Sep 22 '10 at 20:39
The phrase "in bed!" comes irresistibly to mind... – Tom Zych Sep 2 '11 at 8:18
This reminds me of a Married with Children episode – Nick Larsen Aug 28 '12 at 14:23

I closed my spouse as subjective and argumentative.

share|improve this answer
So... what are we all accessories to, now? – Pops Aug 16 '10 at 22:22

I've started lying to people and animals about my problem.

I promise, just one more refresh and I'll take you for a walk

30 minutes later my dogs are still staring at me wondering why they haven't gone anywhere.

share|improve this answer
Next thing you know there is pee all over the office as they spite you. – Chris Aug 26 '10 at 19:17
OMG.. this is so me! – Kent Pawar Dec 20 '12 at 17:13

Last week I started answering Stack Overflow questions while I was doing a code review for someone who was sitting right next to me.

share|improve this answer
Guilty... VERY GUILTY of this. – rayryeng Sep 1 '15 at 22:15

The following are good indications of addiction:

  • Wanting to up-vote comments on a blog/forum you visit regularly that is not SO/SU/SF/MSO.
  • Wanting to edit posts on any forum you visit to correct formatting/grammar.
  • You try and use markdown when writing an e-mail, any markdown e-mail clients out there?
  • You try and use markdown when writing your anything using LiveWriter or Word.
  • Your wife gives you dirty looks when you mention SO/SU/SF/MSO in any sentence.
share|improve this answer
HAHAHAHAHAHA!!! love this one! – studiohack Aug 21 '10 at 19:06
I'm always looking for the "Flag for Moderator Attention" link wherever I go (Forums, Blogs, Youtube...) but there isn't one. :( – Time Traveling Bobby Nov 9 '10 at 14:33
Guilty of the second one. – Nasreddine Nov 19 '11 at 16:13
Guilty of 3 first (cause I already have markup when writing my anything). – Nikana Reklawyks Oct 19 '12 at 8:30
Guilty of all of them (if you substitute "friend" for "wife" in the last one). – The Guy with The Hat Jan 27 '14 at 2:02

I thought I was, but realized maybe I wasn't so much after seeing your desktop widget.

share|improve this answer

You know you're a Stack Overflow addict when this is on the top of your resume:

Will Work for Badges

share|improve this answer
@rcar that's a Threadless t-shirt waiting to happen - Will Work for StackOverflow badges hahaha – user132619 Aug 2 '09 at 18:53

When I start writing an e-mail in Gmail, I'm surprised that a list of possible duplicates does not show after entering the title.

share|improve this answer

How addicted am I?

I catch myself wanting to tell my wife she's not asking a "real question" sometimes.

share|improve this answer

I'm so addicted I read most of these posts.

share|improve this answer

I'm not addicted at all. Proof: I hardly had any cravings while in Venice for the weekend. I refuse to count the fact that I checked what had been going on as soon as I got off the return plane as evidence of any addiction. (I think I added a comment while still in baggage reclaim...)

To put it another way: I'm addicted to Stack Overflow until something better comes along, in the same way that I was addicted to newsgroups before Stack Overflow arrived.

share|improve this answer
we techies must always follow whatever new things come along – Gordon Gustafson Oct 2 '09 at 0:50
We're like cats and birds... shiny things. – Marc Gravell Oct 2 '09 at 5:52
and note that even while on vacation Jon still probably hit the rep cap every day just from residuals... – Steven A. Lowe Nov 12 '09 at 2:57

It's 3 AM I'm on SO and meta... but I'm DEFINITELY NOT ADDICTED!

share|improve this answer
+1 because it's 0417 local time as I'm reading this. – Pops Jul 23 '10 at 8:18

I recently asked Jeff Atwood to delete all my accounts off all four sites, because I was living and breathing the Trilogy in four parts. I have however killed the RSS feeds and try to only come on once or twice a day.

Needless to say, two weeks later he re-linked all the accounts, so that I could come back. However, I now focus my attention on Super User and Meta Stack Overflow. I have however killed the RSS feeds and try to only come on once or twice a day.

I can relate to not getting the 200-reputation-points cap for the day, although this is not there reason I do it. I try and give concise and correct answers, with links to external sites as a backup.

Since Jeff had to unlink my accounts again: Luckily this time he only removed the OpenID, because lo and behold, four months later I am back again. I have now decided I am not having my accounts removed again, but rather just accept that the trilogy is one of my online homes.

share|improve this answer
You've been with meta for four days and you're already at 1025 rep. Are you sure you haven't fallen off the wagon? – Robert Harvey Aug 1 '09 at 18:50
@Roberts. Actually Jeff hasn't fixed my join date on MSO yet. I must remember to mail him about it. – BinaryMisfit Aug 1 '09 at 19:57
You know you have a problem when Jeff tweets about your addiction. – Bill the Lizard Aug 2 '09 at 3:28
Hmmm... I deleted my twitter account as well so I missed that one. – BinaryMisfit Aug 2 '09 at 7:31
@Diago have you heard of the 1st step? "1. We admitted we were powerless over Stack Overflow —that our lives had become unmanageable." – user132619 Aug 2 '09 at 18:55
End of August, how is going your "coming only once or twice a day" ? Unless you mean "coming at the morning, at working, leaving it all day, then closing on the way home, then coming back". In this case indeed, that would make it "twice" – Gnoupi Aug 31 '09 at 8:08
Lolz - The latter - Since I have also been upgraded to Mod on SU. I would say I have just accepted that I am addicted and enjoying it . – BinaryMisfit Aug 31 '09 at 8:13
And moreover, it's not only about you anymore. Now you've got responsibilities, as a moderator. It's not an addiction, you just have to. ;) – Gnoupi Aug 31 '09 at 8:18
@Gnoupi: he has an addiction, not a problem. – perbert Nov 10 '09 at 11:02
The first step is admitting that you have a problem. Congratulations. I'll be minting some "Away from SE for [xx] year" coins and coming up with the other 11 steps soon, I promise :) – Tim Post Aug 31 '10 at 19:42

I'm on holidays in Fiji.


  • Proxy IP address
  • MD5 ( = 469a7f3e5b157b686aed29c28e9656af
  • Check the hash in my identicon (I'm too new to give you a link)

..and I answered the geekiest way possible.

share|improve this answer

I download rep data and compare it to Benford's law (on a day I'm home sick).

share|improve this answer
Note to @Pollyanna, the (on a day I'm home sick) is not an excuse it's meant to show just how addicted I am. – Motti Feb 7 '10 at 12:01

First, what I do after wake up, I refresh SO, SF, SU and MSO.

share|improve this answer
In Russia, SOFU refreshes you! – random Aug 1 '09 at 23:15

You know you're addicted to SO when you can't send a short E-Mail or Facebook message any more without thinking "wait, that's not 15 characters yet!"

share|improve this answer

I'm so addicted to the SO sites that I:

  • Sometimes think of an answer to a question while driving and immediately try to find the nearest Wi-Fi connection so that I can break out my laptop and answer it.

  • had to install the Stay Focused Chrome extension and set my limit to SO to 3 hours a day.

  • Once told my wife that if she asked me that question on SO it would be closed in less than 10 minutes

share|improve this answer
Is that wifi or wifey? – Chris Walton May 1 '11 at 17:24

When your spouse offers you a "Fanatic" badge to spend time with them on 100 consecutive days.

share|improve this answer
100 days? Did you mean hours? – Geoffrey Zheng Sep 22 '10 at 19:35

I come here each time my application is building... and often realize I'm still there several minutes after it finished.

share|improve this answer
4 – Gnoupi Feb 9 '10 at 16:25
The fastest compiler out there, and it takes how long? I work with a system of over 5 million lines of code, and it takes about 20 seconds to compile. – Jerry Dodge Mar 16 '13 at 9:55

Q: "Hi, I'm John, and I'm an Stack Overflow addict."

A: "Hi, John"

I used to tell myself that I picked up the addiction during a period of unemployment. I've begun to wonder if that egg didn't come before that chicken.

share|improve this answer

My number one excuse is that: I am not addicted, I AM STUDYING!!!

share|improve this answer
This, pretty much. "I'm not wasting time at work, I'm improving my knowledge set!" Except for the amount of time I spend on Meta. – mikeTheLiar Jan 31 '13 at 20:53
Whenever I'm at work and am browsing Facebook or something, I always keep StackOverflow opened in another tab so I can quickly switch to it in case my boss walks in. – Jerry Dodge Mar 16 '13 at 9:56
@JerryDodge, I usually keep my IDE open and switch from Stack Overflow to my IDE when my boss walks in. – Anish Ramaswamy Apr 25 '13 at 12:37

I want that desktop app. Bad. So I guess the answer is "really addicted".

share|improve this answer

You're one of the few people who sat and read this instead of refreshing for new question activity:

alt text

share|improve this answer
Yes. I read it. Read it all. – Paul Nathan Feb 1 '10 at 20:31
Freakin hilarious!! – bragboy Jul 20 '10 at 6:13

My profile says I have visited 187 days, 171 consecutive.

share|improve this answer

I have proof that I'm not addicted: I only have 3 woot! badges.

[Thinks: How long has superuser been going ...]


Oh dear, ... now I have 4, one for each of the sites ... time to do something different ...

share|improve this answer
13 more days and counting! – random Aug 2 '09 at 7:41
Oh Christ! You HAD to mention that you could win multiple WOOT badges? Great, now I'm gonna have to get OCD on this Beeyatch. – JohnFx Aug 6 '09 at 3:34

I don't know about addicted, but there's a definite correlation between the increase in my Stack Overflow reputation points and the periods that I have an upcoming deadline. I have one upcoming now as a matter of fact.

share|improve this answer
A positive or negative correlation? – gnostradamus Aug 2 '09 at 1:14
Strong positive. – Dana the Sane Aug 2 '09 at 3:55

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