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I just wonder myself by asking a couple of questions in Stack Overflow that: what are the other options of asking questions and problems if there isn't Stack Overflow for you?

Are there any alternative websites or forums? A newsgroup or a IRC chatroom? I would like to know if there's anything that is close to the functionality or usefulness of Stack Overflow.


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Community wiki ? – ereOn May 14 '10 at 6:14
What? Why? Is something going to happen to StackOverflow? crazy eyes Do you know something I don't know? WHAT'S GOING ON??? – Pops May 14 '10 at 14:25

10 Answers 10

Google is king. Even with Stack Overflow I use Google all the time.

Other than that, I find out official sources of information (i.e. for Microsoft stuff, MSDN).

Forums are good places as well.

At the time, news groups used to be the place to go, but they are dead or dying :(

I still get excellent replies on the C, C++, PHP and Java newsgroups. – Hippo May 14 '10 at 6:42
Most of the answers come from quick targeted google searches. – Josh K May 14 '10 at 12:42
Microsoft is killing all their news groups (too much Spam), if they haven't already. My ISP is shutting their news servers off on June 1, and another local ISP has already done so. Long live NNTP. – Bratch May 14 '10 at 15:21
That's very sad if it's true. Usenet has probably been the best place on the Internet where lengthy discussions between expert programmers used to take place. – Hippo May 19 '10 at 11:45

Curl up in a corner and cry.

+1 lol, true. There might be pseudo-alternatives, but they are all clearly inferior. – forget it May 14 '10 at 8:17

Annoy the hell out of my coworkers.

And then Google anyway.


There's always experts-exchange <g/d/r>

+1 only after I looked up "g/d/r" – Pops May 15 '10 at 22:06
Not expertsexchange? – Andy E May 25 '10 at 14:48
Okay, I've googled g/d/r, and I'm not seeing it...unless you really are referencing East Germany, which seems unlikely. What am I missing? – beska May 25 '10 at 15:39
grins, ducks, runs – Joel Coehoorn May 25 '10 at 16:15

Usenet is one of the best places on the Internet to get access to expert advice. It has served this purpose since the 1980s, and continues to do so today.

You can access Usenet from Google Groups, for example, here's the C# newsgroup:

In order to use it more seriously and avoid spam, getting a newsreader and a subscription to a Usenet provider will help. Subscription usually costs a small amount, but there are some providers that are free (like


I was a big devshed forum and channel9 junkie before the days of Stack Overflow.

+1 for devshed (i'm there sometimes as user f'lar) – Joel Coehoorn May 25 '10 at 17:52

Before SO I used to hang out at But oh boy, they use a terrible forum engine and UI. Further there is also the "Devschuur" at in my native language, but there aren't really many Java related questions out there. My F5 became worthless.

After SO I almost never peeked there. Those forums simply didn't encourage me anymore to post answers. If SO would have disappeared right now, I'd have started/developed a new and similar Q&A hangout.


I know people will hate me for this, but IRC is still a great way to chat with developers and other programmers.

-1 sorry man, but I've never found any useful advice on IRC. I kept trying from time to time, and every time I was disappointed, as I have always been. – forget it May 14 '10 at 8:16
Sure, and RTFM is a great way to learn. – Gnoupi May 14 '10 at 8:17
I have found decent advice on the rare occasion from IRC. It's best when you have a more complicated problem that involves walking me through something like server setup then a specific here's my question, what's my answer. – Josh K May 14 '10 at 12:41
Every time I enter IRC I'm interrupting an Idle Game. Everyone there is always too elite to answer questions from some newcomer. It's like trying to ask a girl out with all of her disapproving friends there. – rlb.usa May 14 '10 at 15:23
@Gnoupi a quote on Reddit programming : "You want me to RTFM? Then write a better FM." – rlb.usa May 14 '10 at 15:35
Why is IRC so bad? I get terrific help for Ubuntu development from the developers on IRC. Maybe my experience is atypical? – uɐɯsO uɐɥʇɐN May 15 '10 at 0:20
The haskell channel on Freenode is very helpful. – Dan Dyer Sep 3 '10 at 10:48

There are still enough good forums on the web.


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