I've seen many questions on Stack Overflow asking which devices are best for developers. This made me wonder if questions asking for hardware device recommendations (best device for programming, best device within a certain budget, etc.) are on-topic for Stack Overflow, or if they should be asked somewhere else?

For Instance check these links:


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    Just post some links here as example...I bet those are dropping like flies then. Sep 23, 2011 at 9:02
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    also asking for the "best" device or product for something is always going to get closed as "Not Constructive". I may prefer programming on one platform/laptop while someone else would prefer another platform/desktop. At the end of the day, the "best device" is the best one for you. Some people on the internet can't tell you.
    – tombull89
    Sep 23, 2011 at 9:10
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    @Padded Cell: Hmm thanks for the suggestion, i have did it.. :)
    – rptwsthi
    Sep 23, 2011 at 11:49
  • See, now are two out of four closed and the other two just need one more vote. Well, keep them coming. ;) Sep 23, 2011 at 12:03

2 Answers 2


Questions about choosing new hardware are shopping questions, and shopping questions are covered by the blog post Q&A is Hard, Let’s Go Shopping! Verdict: no.

Questions about "best" anything are almost always "bad subjective," and bad subjective questions are covered in the blog post Good Subjective, Bad Subjective. Verdict: no.

Or in short: no + no = really NO.

  • Didn't the SO FAQ explicitly exclude those in the past? Not today. The Super User FAQ (still) does: "and it is not about [...] a shopping or buying recommendation".
    – Arjan
    Apr 8, 2012 at 14:24

Questions about development devices do have a place on Stack Overflow. A question like “how do I upload a new bootloader to my X development board” fits squarely in the “software tools commonly used by programmers” part of the description of Stack Overflow.

However the type of question you suggest “best device for …” isn't suitable for Stack Overflow. That's not a matter of topic, it's a matter of the nature of the question. These questions have no place anywhere on Stack Exchange.

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