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My question What is the worst programming language you ever worked with? got closed and locked recently.

If you feel strongly that we should keep this alive, please take the discussion to – Marc Gravell♦ 21 hours ago

I feel that the question should not die, but rather think it's time for it to retire.

I'm locking this due to a lot of negative feedback from lots of different users.

If you mean the comments: There have been a lot of comments and I have read and reread them all. They are not overly negative. There have been negative ones but also some really nice ones.

For example

I'm sad this got closed. I thought it was going to be useful.


+1 for your work maintaining the question. For more useful than having questions which are abandoned only to be reasked at some later date.

If you don't mean the comments, I am curious about what sort of 'feedback' you are talking about. Anyway, in my opinion feedback should be primarily pointed at me. To make this easier I have added my email address to my profile.

That said, I think people got annoyed because I removed the subjective tag and because I constantly updated the language overview. I don't think subjective is an appropriate tag for this question but admittedly removing it wasn't the wisest thing to do and I regret that I did it. I still think the language overview is useful but it probably does not belong on stackoverflow.

My proposal to let this question retire with dignity is:

  1. Tag it subjective.
  2. Delete the language overview section completely.
  3. Remove the lock.

I will not revert any of this. If this is done I think it is also safe to reopen it. After a while the question will be buried and harm nobody but if someone has a really interesting answer he or she can still share it.

share|improve this question

closed as off-topic by AsheeshR, gnat, djechlin, John Saunders, Adam Lear Dec 24 '13 at 19:20

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "The problem described here can no longer be reproduced. Changes to the system or to the circumstances affecting the asker have rendered it obsolete. If you encounter a similar problem, please post a new question." – AsheeshR, Adam Lear
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

Someone needs to do something to make the quoted material stand out better. Right now all I am seeing is a very slightly indented blockquote. – TheTXI Jul 2 '09 at 20:55
@TheTXI: it gets better if you fiddle with your contrast and brightness settings of your screen, but I agree that the colors can be better! – fretje Jul 2 '09 at 21:00
I'm kind of curious as to why you feel so attached to this question. If it really was genuine research for a language you're writing then you have more than enough to go on. – bananakata Jul 2 '09 at 21:03
@annakata: Yes I have enough to go on;-) Basically I had to reasons to move it here. One thing was Marc Gravell's comment "a lot of negative feedback from lots of different users". I'm just curious where this comes from. Another thing is that the question is quite a mess now I would like to have a chance to clean it up i.e. remove the language overview. – Ludwig Weinzierl Jul 2 '09 at 22:03
"Right now all I am seeing is a very slightly indented blockquote" dude, get a better monitor, or calibrate! – Jeff Atwood Jul 15 '09 at 0:02
@Jeff: it's not just him (or his monitor). The colors are a bit too subtle over here. – Telemachus Jul 15 '09 at 0:22
Monitor calibration, heh... All i have to do is change the angle at which i view my laptop screen to go from invisible to dark grey... – Shog9 Jul 15 '09 at 2:00
The definate answer should have been "all languages when used for a purpose other than that for which they were designed" and that should have been an end to it. That or matlab, god I hate that language – Richard Tingle Dec 24 '13 at 18:18
possible duplicate of What is a historical lock, and what is it used for? – gnat Dec 24 '13 at 18:51
It's Java. What's there to discuss? – djechlin Dec 24 '13 at 18:58
Okay, I'm voting with @gnat to close because I was genuinely confused that someone was trying to retire this question out of its historical lock into some new graveyard. – djechlin Dec 24 '13 at 19:01
Is there some reason this thing was edited back on to the front page, or was this just a hat-grab? – Ben Barden Dec 24 '13 at 19:28
@BenBarden Looking at the edit history it looks like Oden♦ closed it then had a change of heart – Richard Tingle Dec 24 '13 at 21:27

I don't think a question about what is the "best" or "worst" of much of anything is going to suffer a kind fate on StackOverflow. You are going to make it very argumentative with a lot of hurt feelings (you know how programmers are with their favorite languages). I don't know if it was community wiki or not, but if it wasn't, it probably should have been in the least.

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I voted to close this question. There is no doubt in my mind that it is both subjective and argumentative. I don't want to debate that with you. You obviously disagree. But, then I saw that Jeff Atwood voted to re-open it. That made me believe that even though it fit the criteria for closure, it should be allowed.

However, given all that, I think your daily bumping of that question was completely obnoxious and made me wish for an ignore function. I am very glad that Marc did what he did.

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+1 on daily bumping. That was the real source of a lot of the friction. See my answer in this thread too. – Jeff Atwood Jul 15 '09 at 0:00

Hiya again ;-p

Shog9 and TheTXI cover a lot of the points with these very open ended, not-really-answerable questions. In addition to the comments posted, there were a number of spam+moderator flags*, and a good number of users made the valid point about your daily "bump" of this question (55 edits) - enough so that it became a running joke in the comments.

You might also want to look at the number of comment votes on things like "I'm shocked to see this re-opened" (+40). In general, it was attracting quite a bit of hostility, even if the intention was pure.

I feel that the question should not die, but rather think it's time for it to retire

I'd be happy with that... but in particular, the daily "bump" was preventing this...

*=I won't go into specifics on any flags, as I believe there is an important expectation of privacy in raising a flag - but the point is the number more than the content.

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Yeah but why Lock it?? Listen to the users. If they want to close it, it'll be closed. If they want to open it, it'll be re-opened. Either way it'll fade out eventually anyway. It's a little harsh to Close and Lock a question just because you don't agree with it. – Chris Pietschmann Jul 2 '09 at 23:22
Because if it wasn't locked, the OP would keep bumping it to the frontpage till the end of times. – sth Jul 2 '09 at 23:42
@Chris - and because of the yo-yo effect; and when it comes to moderation I'm more interested in how the site/community feels about something than how I feel; re "just because you don't agree with it" - it wasn't personal. – Marc Gravell Jul 3 '09 at 7:01

I kinda said my piece in the comments to the question itself... but for the record, i think you had good intentions - it's just not a question that will ever be calmly, objectively answered.

Stack Overflow works best with questions that can be answered at least semi-objectively. Yes, there are some objective measures of language "goodness"... but a whole lot more of it boils down to personal taste and style. So you end up with people as passionately in love with a language as those who hate it, and neither will ever agree with the other.

Endless flamewar...

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Personally, I did not care for the way you kept editing the original question (ostensibly to "add links") which implicitly bumps it back to the front page every time.

If anything was rubbing people raw about this fairly negative toned and contentious question, it was surely related to the fact that you kept pushing it back up into their faces.

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Agree with TheTXI, the words BEST or WORST in a question title is at best a community wiki warrant and at worst death warrant.

Also, I think this is a pretty uninteresting question cause one persons "best" programming language will be another's "worst"... and there is always BrainFuck and family.

I think a much more interesting approach is to look at particular aspects of programming languages people find problematic.

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Java is probably the worst programming language. PHP, C, and C++ are pretty bad too.

(Flame away. He hates your favorite language!!!11!)

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... and best is what, Perl? – Brad Gilbert Jul 15 '09 at 21:22
The best language has yet to be conceived. – jrockway Jul 16 '09 at 8:19

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