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StackOverflow has been awesome for code related questions for me as well as my team. However, in the real world, software doesn't exist in isolation or in the context of only code - it's within the context of either a business or a higher purpose (eg: simplifying user Q&A paradigm). For many of those decisions, the question is more 'meta' than just code-questions "float or real?" but more high level; the kind of data more experienced dev / mature projects could very well share with others, in a Q&A format.

So where can one ask questions tightly coupled with software code itself? Real world, high level, software development questions that are as important (if not more) to any software project as specific questions about a few lines of code?

IMHO, StackOverflow is a great place because

  • its "of programmers, by programmers and for programmers" approach is great for such related questions
  • questions are tightly coupled, software development related (versus related-but-distant like "which software engineering role pays best?" or something)
  • avoids too much fragmentation of software experts, developers and problems

However, that's my $0.02. I wanted to hear from others on what they feel is appropriate for the future.

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marked as duplicate by gnat, Martijn Pieters, yhw42, Undo, hims056 Nov 30 '13 at 2:19

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

Do you want opinions, or answers? Do you want to (continue to) rant about this, or be instructed on where you could post those questions? Are you aware of sites such as and (on which you are *already active)? – Andrew Barber Feb 1 '12 at 19:07
Andrew, know what a rant is and reread my post. If you have nothing constructive than pure downvotes, please don't participate and let others communicate. Stop making this about you, there are more important things in the real world. Editing this to add: if you aren't constructive, I will be ignoring you. At least I have more pressing real world issues than some downvote statistic in some database ... – DeepSpace101 Feb 1 '12 at 19:15
Wow. That comment is exactly what I mean, Sid. Coupled with your ongoing comments on those questions. No answers to my questions, though? The sites I mention actually are part of your answer, if that's what you were seeking. – Andrew Barber Feb 1 '12 at 19:18
Also, stop equating comments to votes. You've made incorrect assumptions a few times in your comments about my voting. I wouldn't be surprised to be told 25% of my down votes were in response to people assuming I down voted by comments. – Andrew Barber Feb 1 '12 at 19:21
Answers vs opinion: Answers if possible. But usually the burden of evidence can be great, so opinions based off experience would also be sufficient for decision making. – DeepSpace101 Feb 1 '12 at 19:22
I already gave you two possible answers. One of your questions would be appropriate on Programmers. Another might be. The other isn't appropriate for any se site, in my opinion. (because it asks for speculation, since the information isn't out there) – Andrew Barber Feb 1 '12 at 19:23
up vote 15 down vote accepted

To your specific question:

Where can one ask questions tightly coupled with software code itself? Real world, high level, software development questions?

This is what Programmers.SE is for. From Introducing

In a nutshell, Stack Overflow is for when you’re front of your compiler or editor working through code issues. Programmers is for when you’re in front of a whiteboard working through higher level conceptual programming issues. Hence the (awesome) whiteboard inspired design!

The problem is, the examples you give are bad questions. We don't want them either, and if you had asked them on Programmers, they'd be closed for exactly the same reasons.

  • Different ways to interface with SQL Server in C#/.NET?
    The meat of the question is "Which one is most scalable with increased end user traffic?" Scalable how? What specific performance metric are you looking for? What's your specific use case? If you're just looking for a broad comparison between three technologies, it's not going to go well here.

  • GPL2: Cherokee web server project setup "interestingly"?
    The question asks, "Why on EARTH would you contribute to this project after reading that contribution agreement? Are existing contributors aware of this?" I don't know, have you asked them? Why not post your findings in the relevant discussion board or mailing list? This is more of an expression of surprise than an actual problem we can help with.

  • When will ASP.NET MVC4 be commercially released?
    If Microsoft isn't publishing exact dates on their roadmap, we don't know either. You'll have better luck contacting someone at Microsoft than asking random strangers on the internet for their best guess.

Real questions—or at least real questions on the Stack Exchange network—have answers: not ideas, speculation, or opinions. If you're looking for a place where people can riff about what's "most scalable", if a person was justified to use a license, or what the internal Microsoft roadmap might be, you'll likely be consistently disappointed.

But if you have a specific problem you're facing, and have specific metrics for determining the correctness of an answer, feel free to ask your high-level questions on Programmers.

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Useful answer. Thanks! All the drama and preaching in the other comments/answers is ... laughable. Evident from the comments and the downvotes to this question, some folks are still stuck up about the closed questions; rather than focusing on the question on this page (in bold above). At my end, till today I wasn't aware of My unawareness? yeah, that's why the question. A big deal? Not at all. – DeepSpace101 Feb 2 '12 at 2:37

Your examples, in order:

  1. Different ways to interface with SQL Server in C#/.NET?

    This question is "Not Constructive." I asked a Programmers.SE mod if it might be on-topic there, and he said: "'Most scalable' generally turns into 'Most favorite'. If there was a specific, observable metric he had in mind, maybe: but then I wonder if DBA would have better experts."

  2. GPL2: Cherokee web server project setup "interestingly"?

    This question is off-topic for Stack Overflow. Programmer.SE sometimes entertains licensing questions, if they are specific.

  3. When will ASP.NET MVC4 be commercially released?

    This question is extremely localized. Only Microsoft possibly knows the answer, and once it's released, this question will be of no use to anyone.

From the FAQ:

What kind of questions should I not ask here?

Avoid asking questions that are subjective, argumentative, or require extended discussion. This is not a discussion board, this is a place for questions that can be answered!

See Also

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