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I thought there were 3 states of an SE site: Private Beta, Public Beta, and Full-blown SE site. Then I stumbled across this question and this question, both of which indicate a state between(?) Public Beta and Full-blown SE site. What is this "Gold" state?

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Gold just means live, the state of being officially launched after the public beta is done. It's not a state between public beta and "full-blown". Jeff was simply comparing live (gold) Stack Exchange sites to Stack Overflow, which is a completely different scale from any of the other sites.

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Kind of like a "gold master" in that it's what is "released to production" but not "gold" like "a wonderful thing". +1 for the answer, but I'ld like to call out that part about SO being totally a different beast than the rest of the SE2.0 sites ;) –  jcolebrand Jan 10 '11 at 5:03

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