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Some tags are mutually exclusive, for example and and yet, there are lots of questions, (currently 100), that contain both tags.

Another example of wrongly tagged questions, is and . Here's the list of such questions, (currently 223).

Could we have a list of mutually exclusive tags, similar to the synonyms list?

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Not a bad thought, but it won't work. "My web application using Google Maps API 3 is not displaying in the Android 4.1 browser. How can I troubleshoot this?" Similar contrived but plausible scenarios are surely doable with other tags. –  Charles Nov 2 '12 at 8:49
    
You mean a web application, not an Android app. The correct tag for a web application would be [Google-Maps-API-3] and not [Android] –  Marcelo Nov 2 '12 at 8:50
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I think that might have more unintended side-effects than we can think of. Why don't you simply retag whenever you find such a situation where one of the tags simply doesn't belong? Let's not try to make the system "smarter" than is good for it. –  Bart Nov 2 '12 at 8:54
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1 Answer 1

The problem with "smart" features such as this one is the fact that we often can't foresee the situations in which this perfectly reasonable solution actually is a problem.

Take the word-filter for titles for example. Yes, the word "Problem" is terribly vague for a title and should most likely not be there. But as soon as you implement the filter, you'll find situations where the word "problem" is perfectly reasonable. And not only that, those who actually want to use the word seem to feel no hesitation to use such creative options as "problam".

While the latter might not happen all that quickly for tags (tag creation requires some rep after all), the former might. I personally see more value in just manually retagging problematic tag combinations where you stumble upon them. And perhaps leave a comment or a descriptive edit message.

I can understand your frustration, but I think that the feature you propose will ultimately end up being more of an annoyance than it's worth.

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Thanks for your answer. I still think it could be a useful feature and ultimately it may depend on how it is implemented, for example there could be a pop-up dialog saying "Are you sure that you want to use both tags [A] and [B]? Note that the two are normally different things". The problem I see is that some new users might be adding as many tags as possible simply to get more attention to their question, thus "contaminating" the list of questions that I am capable of responding to. –  Marcelo Nov 2 '12 at 9:28
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I have no idea actually how effective such a message would be. Or how effective compared to a user informing them in a comment. Well, I have an idea, but no data to back it up with. The thing is though that many users (me included) suck at one thing or another. The creation of a title. The description of their problem. The adding of relevant tags. Luckily we can edit. I'm not a big supporter of smart features and system messages, but someone might prove my opinion to be completely invalid. –  Bart Nov 2 '12 at 9:33
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