Though I think that it's useful to provide information on what the tag is about, always displaying it on top of the page is really annoying.

Can you move it to a side space?

For me, having tag info at the top of the page means that I see one less question when I browse to a page, and because I usually know what java or c usually means I don't need to be reminded every time I see the page.

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Yes, but maybe not for the same reason, I preferred it how it was with the info and stats tabs accessible through clicking the tag. –  Martin Smith Aug 26 '10 at 16:23
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When I saw the "Please do not use this tag..." message at the top of the not-programming-related tag page, I nearly sprained my index finger from trying to upvote it so hard. It's hazardous! ;) –  Bill the Lizard Aug 26 '10 at 20:09
    
Info and Stats never really fitted in the UI ... not-programming-related should really be blacklisted ... –  waffles Aug 27 '10 at 1:30
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6 Answers

up vote 2 down vote accepted

Maybe something like this:

alt text

Unobtrusive, yet obvious and readily accessible.

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I think adding it at the top should at best be an option.

Stackoverflow is designed to be the expert site. Experts in java/perl/whatever know what it is, probably much better (or at least in a more argumentative way) than any Wiki article. The information is useless at best.

For those who aren't experts they should have at least an idea of what are appropriate tags. Even if we don't, those who have sufficient reputation can add tags and thus steer the questions in the right direction.

Based on that I don't find any value add to the tag descriptions, but do see downsides like distraction and loss of screen area.

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+1. Nice proposal to make it a user option, with 'ON' by default. –  Alexander Pogrebnyak Aug 26 '10 at 23:25
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There are a lot of people who come here looking for answers that aren't experts. Some of that information is important to let them know how that tag works on SO. For an example of useful Meta information on how to tag see the Excel info.

What I think would help with the space is if you could get truncated listings like the home page on the questions page.

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If you use the feeds, you can view 'em however you want... –  Shog9 Aug 26 '10 at 19:12
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Though I think that it's useful to provide information on what the tag is about, always displaying it on top of the page is really annoying.

Keep in mind, this thing was just turned on. It'll take a bit of time for the wikis to adjust such that the excerpt is actually useful.

And yeah, it may never be useful to you, at least not for the tags you're most active in. Comfort yourself with the thought that, just maybe, it'll remind a few other users that the [c] tag doesn't belong on every C++ question.

That said, it doesn't really bother me. It's smaller and less gaudy than the "sponsored tag links" boxes, and I got used to seeing those. And you'll be happy to know that you get one or the other, but never both.

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Personally I found the huge blob on the Java wiki excerpt distasteful and noisy.

Before

I went ahead and edited it to something more visually pleasing:

After

Less space, less noise, much prettier.

We really want users to browse around this new section, the new answers and hot answer links provide lots of value for existing seasoned users of the tag.

To achieve the excerpt trick I used on Java I added a new meta tag to the tag wiki.

If you type

<excerpt>Tag excerpt here</excerpt> 

In the wiki, it will use that text for the excerpt. This allows a lot more flexibility when authoring this stuff.

I would like to avoid adding any more user options, its a slippery slope and ends here.

If we move this to the side bar, below ads, nobody is going to look at it.

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+1 for <excerpt> –  James McNellis Aug 27 '10 at 4:19
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Now it screws actual content of the info page: stackoverflow.com/tags/python/info –  SilentGhost Aug 28 '10 at 10:44
    
@Silent I fixed Python, will simplify this stuff next week –  waffles Aug 28 '10 at 21:25
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I would suggest making it collapsible. While all those links are useful, they're not used that often and for people who monitor certain tags, loss of vertical screen estate is just painful.

P.S. I'd suggest making interesting/ignored tags collapsible as well.

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