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Are there any guidelines as to when an answer becomes a discussion. I am new to StackOverflow and one of the questions I attempted to answer seems to be heading towards a discussion rather than a straightforward answer. I did check answers on this board, but did not find help on this particular point.

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Can you post a link to the question. –  ChrisF Sep 11 '10 at 17:28
    
@ChrisF: I went through his profile, and I believe he's referring to this one. –  BoltClock's a Unicorn Sep 11 '10 at 17:43
    
There's always chat.meta.stackoverflow.com if you wish to engage in a real time discussion with other users. –  Yi Jiang Sep 11 '10 at 18:08
    
This proto-discussion has come to a natural end. @ChrisF the question was the one @BoltClock picked up on. –  Chris Walton Sep 12 '10 at 17:50
    
@Yi Jiang - thanks, but real time discussions are often not an option for me - I live on a boat; travel frequently; and am often in locations where I cannot get mobile connections. –  Chris Walton Sep 12 '10 at 18:04
    
IMHO a related issue is answers that make a good point but in no way answer the question (or even only partly answer the question). Once an answer is accepted, it is OK to up vote these responses, but voting for them beforehand means the question moves off the Unanswered questions view :-( It would be nice if we could "Up vote as a Comment". –  Mark Hurd Sep 14 '10 at 1:44

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