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I would love Stack Overflow to recommend questions for me to answer, based on questions I have answered in the past (perhaps taking into account how many upvotes my answer received).

I find the tagging system too general for finding questions to answer. For example, questions tagged ravendb cover a wide range of topics, many of which are out of my comfort zone, but I would probably be inclined to answer a question that is specifically about writing an extension for RavenDB.

I imagine the term vector of a previously answered question could be compared with new questions to yield a set of sensible recommendations.

Just an idea.

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How the front page currently works. (some minor tweaks may have been added since then). – Robert Harvey Apr 9 '12 at 15:35
Thanks Robert. I obviously missed this change. Thought it was still showing questions in strict chronological ordering. – Richard Poole Apr 10 '12 at 13:44

1 Answer 1

up vote 4 down vote accepted

As Robert noted in his comment, this already happens! ...But let me explain:

The more you participate on the site, the more information Stack Overflow has on the questions that you're interested in. Sure, you can go to all the effort of defining a list of "interesting" tags - but even if you don't, SO will do it for you - simply visiting questions with the same tag will cause the site to infer your interest in them.

On top of that, asking or answering questions builds a list of tags you're active in in your profile. These are used by the Unanswered Questions page to determine which questions you might be well-suited to answer.

And both of these sets of tags contribute to the aforementioned customized home page.

Now, there's always a chance that the tagging system doesn't adequately reflect your specific interests. Some of this is unavoidable - tags can't be infinitely granular... But in cases where you encounter a poorly-tagged question, take that opportunity to re-tag it, and thereby help the system - and other users - better find questions of interest.

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Garr, I hate the I-know-what-stuff-you-like feature. On Physics.SE it highlights all quantum mechanics questions--annoying since QM is my most O_0 topic. I've disabled it by choosing a nonexistant tag as my favorite :\ – Manishearth Apr 9 '12 at 16:58
Well, just be thankful it doesn't identify arbitrary phrases in questions as your "favorites" somehow... (Not completely sure, but that might have been what Richard was suggesting) – Shog9 Apr 9 '12 at 17:00
that would be a nightmare. Not being an expert in anything, I usually give answers on varied topics. I can't even imagine what the system would assume I like :P – Manishearth Apr 9 '12 at 17:08
I hadn't seen Jeff's blog post. Thanks for the explanation! – Richard Poole Apr 10 '12 at 13:42

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