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How to deal with questions from people who don't know enough to ask?

I don't like this question, but I don't know how to deal with it.

From the FAQ, "Stack Overflow is for professional and enthusiast programmers".

I fall in to the second part of that statement, but I would think even the professionals would know how to deal with a negative number :)

I don't think the question is off-topic, but....

I want to flag it, but what flag is suitable?

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marked as duplicate by waiwai933, Cody Gray, kiamlaluno, Yannis, Pops May 7 '12 at 14:15

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.

    
Generally, not a real question would be used for this. –  animuson May 4 '12 at 23:22
    
@waiwai933 Yes, it could be a duplicate of that, although I had to read it a couple of times to realise. Although I'd like to think my question was slightly less angry :) –  vascowhite May 4 '12 at 23:33
1  
89.27854% of the time? Note this is a very accurate estimation, based on my keen guesswork based on what I've been going through in the flag queue. –  casperOne May 5 '12 at 19:14
    
Haha, sounds like a reasonable percentage to me. –  vascowhite May 5 '12 at 20:29

2 Answers 2

up vote 2 down vote accepted

Flag to close it as "Not a Real Question", because that's what it is.

But "hate" is probably too strong a word for some harmless bytes on the internet... Go grab yourself a beer and relax.

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2  
OK with the hate comment. I already had the beer :) –  vascowhite May 4 '12 at 23:23
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If I could relax I wouldn't be looking at SO at 01:25. But it's good advice. –  vascowhite May 4 '12 at 23:25
2  
and it wasn't "harmless bytes", it was something wrong on the internets!! –  vascowhite May 4 '12 at 23:49

If I were to flag that, I would probably go for "too localized":

This question is unlikely to ever help any future visitors; it is only relevant to a small geographic area, a specific moment in time, or an extraordinarily narrow situation that is not generally applicable to the worldwide audience of the internet.

While this isn't exactly one of the scenarios listed, this question asks for a solution of a very narrow (negative number + toast) and trivial problem - this qualifies it as "not helpful for future visitors" IMHO.

Then again, I might consider the downvotes sufficient in this case...

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