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Which computer science / programming Stack Exchange do I post in?

Title says it all. From what I can see, "theoretical computer science" questions seem to be slightly more isolated to discussing algorithms, whereas "computer science" seems to have questions that are slightly broader and higher-level. Is there any place on the Stack Exchange sites where they give a longer description?

I'm just curious as to what niche the beta "computer science" site is meant to fill, as I see many topics in both forums that overlap.

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marked as duplicate by jadarnel27, Yi Jiang, Ben Brocka, animuson, kiamlaluno May 9 '12 at 17:56

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.

This is what I hate the most about stackechange. SO is being split into separate parts. Hope it won't get the granularity of a tag. – Lukasz Madon May 9 '12 at 14:58
Isn't "Computer Science" the same as "theoretical SO"? – Bruno May 9 '12 at 15:01
There is also scicomp.SE (computational science) – Manishearth May 9 '12 at 15:02
@lukas "Hate" is a very strong word. Personally, I love that I needn't wade through Computer Science content when visiting SO. – Andrew Barber May 9 '12 at 15:02
@Manishearth, Comp. Sci. is actually quite a different field, it's more about the sciences supported by computing than the other way around. – Bruno May 9 '12 at 15:03
@Bruno I know, just adding to the confusion ;-) . Also: "Comp. Sci. " is not that good an abbreviation choice :p – Manishearth May 9 '12 at 15:04
@AndrewBarber but solving "needn't wade through" problem causes other problems. Where should I post my question? Is it more CS or more about, say, Java? If I post it on SO how to get dudes form CS to view this? I'd love to be able to wade through CS, Code review, programmers content when I visiting SO. How to do so? All in all, tags system should be responsible for filtering, all CS related stuff should be on a one site. Peronally, I would add Master Tag that would does that: "Stackoverflow" "Programmers" etc. – Lukasz Madon May 9 '12 at 15:12
I completely agree with @lukas. The fact that I have to come to meta Stack Exchange just to find out where I am allowed to ask a question about algorithms is ludicrous. – Levi Botelho May 15 '14 at 7:36
up vote 7 down vote accepted

The faq for both sites is always the best place to check with, in general.

TCS spells out their requirement for discourse that might take place at the graduate level or higher.

Theoretical Computer Science - Stack Exchange is for theoretical computer scientists and researchers in related fields. We welcome research-level questions in theoretical computer science (TCS).

Although there is no black-and-white distinction between research-level questions and non-research-level questions, questions are considered to be "research-level" roughly when they can be discussed between two professors or between two graduate students working on Ph.D.'s, but not usually between a professor and a typical undergraduate student. It does not include questions at the level of difficulty of typical undergraduate course/textbook homework/exercise.

Since Computer Science is still in Beta, it's faq is being worked on continually, but a basic draft can be found here.

From one of the proposals (Alex ten Brink):

Computer Science - Stack Exchange is for students, researchers and practitioners of computer science and related fields. If your question is about ...

  • understanding concepts of computer science
  • solving computer science problems
  • applying computer science to solve problems in other areas
  • issues unique to the discipline of computer science itself

In practicality, CS still has quite a bit of algorithm content, but less of a requirement for mathematical rigor (though having such doesn't disqualify a question), and more diversity in terms of applied questions (e.g., Organisation and Architecture of Quantum Computers).

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