What is meta? ×
Meta Stack Exchange is where users like you discuss bugs, features, and support issues that affect the software powering all 131 Stack Exchange communities.

The stackoverflow.com guidelines request specific questions that programmers would ask, no vague questions that would elicit discussion or debate. But as an architect a lot of my questions are just that. In a lot of cases I'm looking for other professionals opinions on a topic. An example is a question I was planning on asking today: "What are considered the best architectures for high volume data capture?" I have a need to design a system to capture a lot of small data elements and wanted to hear other opinions of the best way to do that.

Is there a Stack Overflow sponsored forum to discuss those kinds of questions?

share|improve this question
4  
The "no vague questions that would elicit discussion or debate" idea is not limited to Stack Overflow. It's a network-wide principle. –  Bart May 22 '13 at 14:14
1  
Why the phobia against discussion? How do you learn what you don't know unless you hear what others are doing? If I ask a specific question, say 'is hadoop a good solution for high volume data capture', I've already limited the responses to hadoop, I've prejudiced the minds of the readers. But I want to know what I don't know. It is a silly requirement, especially for architectural topics. –  kfoster May 22 '13 at 14:48
    
There's no phobia against discussion at all. Go to a site that provides a platform for discussion. SE is not it. –  Bart May 22 '13 at 14:49
1  
Short sighted, but okay. Any suggestions for where professional software developers should go for intelligent discussion if SE isn't it? –  kfoster May 22 '13 at 14:51
    
@kfoster - what makes you think it's short sighted? IMO its the complete opposite, it's long sighted. Users here have relised we can make a better resource for the ongoing web community by dealing in specifics rather than vagueness. –  Jamiec May 22 '13 at 15:12
1  
How is discussing the relative merits of hadoop or a service bus or database in a high volume data capture scenario vague? But if I say 'hadoop' in the question I'll get hadoop answers, I want to hear about experiences with other solutions. You are espousing prejudicing the mind of the reader before you've let them speak. –  kfoster May 22 '13 at 15:34

3 Answers 3

http://programmers.stackexchange.com/ is the site for architecture questions. But, they still have to be practical, answerable questions.

Instead of asking for "best" architectures for high volume data capture, describe what problem you're trying to solve, give us some context to work with, and then ask about possible approaches for solving it. The best solution for your situation will emerge naturally in the answers.

share|improve this answer
    
That is exactly what I was planning on doing. If I stated in the body of the question what my goals were, specific application goals, and solicited suggestions for best practices or lessons learned by experience, is that not enough context? –  kfoster May 22 '13 at 14:56
    
@kfoster The context should be enough, but the community tends to have a swift reaction to the specific "what's the best X" phrasing, so you might want to be a bit careful about that. From what you're saying here, I think your question should be fine. –  Anna Lear May 22 '13 at 14:58

"What are considered the best architectures for high volume data capture?"

This would be closed as not constructive on any SE site. Even if some day we rollout softwarearchitects.stackexchange.com, that will still be closed as not constructive.

share|improve this answer
    
Yeah, you and several others say that but I'm not sure why. There are multiple possible architectures, RDBMS, No-Sql, file system, ServiceBus. Multiple specific solutions in those architectures, Hadoop, Cassandra, Redshift, Microsoft, IBM, Oracle...etc. I don't want to limit the ideas people bring to the table and I especially want to encourage someone bringing up a new technology. The body of the question would state all that. Without a suitably high level question how would I get that kind of feedback? –  kfoster May 22 '13 at 14:43
    
All you'll get with such a broad question is a set of general opinions that won't be any better than looking at search results. There is no such thing as a "best architecture". There might be a best one (or at least a small set of most appropriate candidates) right this minute for your exact requirements though. –  Mat May 22 '13 at 15:07
    
@kfoster see my answer here and the linked question at the top. –  AAA May 22 '13 at 15:32
    
@djechlin this brings me back to my original question, is there a place on SE for architectural questions. A developer may want to know 'can hadoop handle 10,000 writes of 100 bytes or less a second' but an architect wants to know 'what solutions have people used or are recommended to handle 10,000 writes of 100 bytes or less a second'. One question is objective, one is subjective, that's the nature of architecture vs development. I do both, most architects do, seems like SE is developer centric. Fine, any suggestions on other sites for architecture questions? –  kfoster May 22 '13 at 15:43
    
@kfoster This brings me back to my original answer, no, you still have not asked a question that is appropriate on any SE site. Your example here is still not constructive and more falls in this: blog.stackoverflow.com/2010/11/qa-is-hard-lets-go-shopping You're asking people to list out their experiences, there can be up to 30 valid answers, etc. –  AAA May 22 '13 at 15:59
    
Re. other sites I recommend meetup.com, following blogs like highscalability.com. You're looking for discussion and opinion, not solutions. –  AAA May 22 '13 at 16:00
    
I'm looking for solutions that work, not opinion. Given a throughput requirement the valid answers would be far less than 30. You seem to be the type of developer that wants to know 'how do i make my hammer better', whereas I want to know 'is there a better tool than a hammer for this job'. You apparently have not worked in an environment with a real architecture or architect. However, your recommendation of Highscalability.com is spot on. Thanks for that. –  kfoster May 22 '13 at 16:10
    
@kfoster quick fact check, I've worked both at a company with thousands of developers and at a 5 person startup. Anyway best of luck. –  AAA May 22 '13 at 16:24

Stack Overflow, and all the other sites in the Stack Exchange family, are designed specifically to avoid discussion. They are geared towards a strict Q&A format.

However, all sites (Stack Overflow included) do have the addition of multiple chat rooms where you are free to discuss any on-topic topic. Perhaps that is the place for your extended discussion on architectural woes.

share|improve this answer
    
People in chat are going to be equally irritated with this question when compared to answerers - just because it's in chat doesn't make it possible to answer. That being said, if the question were refined a bit, it could work. –  Emrakul May 22 '13 at 14:18
1  
@KnightswhosayNi - I didnt mean you could circumvent the question policy by asking in chat - I meant that you could have an extended discussion. –  Jamiec May 22 '13 at 14:19
    
Chat is limited to the people logged in at that time, hardly a large enough audience. –  kfoster May 22 '13 at 14:38

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .