It seems there should be some way of sorting by multiple criteria. ie I want to sort by unanswered then featured then newest. I've search meta and found lots of questions about sorting by tags, but not to sort by the criteria listed in the subtabs. If this exists, can anybody let me know how?

  • I'm not sure I understand why you want to sort by unanswered and then featured since both are boolean, and are typically mutually exclusive. – Some Helpful Commenter Jan 27 '12 at 18:51
  • For example, if I'm going to invest time answering a question, I want to get questions that haven't already been answered, but aren't so old the person asking has given up. Right now that requires that I either click "Newest" and manually search for 0 answers, or I click "Unanswered" and manually look to see when the questions were asked. It's the concept though. The SQL shouldn't be too hard, just add a few more columns to the select query. – AlexC Jan 27 '12 at 18:57
  • Its the UX concept I don't get. There are 490,000 unanswered questions and 2,100,000 answered questions. If you sort that first its going to completely overwhelm the 319 featured questions. – Some Helpful Commenter Jan 27 '12 at 19:00
  • OK, I see where I went wrong in explaining. I suppose it's not just sorting, but selecting, and I don't want to get hung up on the "Featured" thing. A better example would be this. If I wanted to help answer a question, say this exact question, I should be able to say give me all the unanswered questions sorted by newest instead of votes. Instead, all I can do is click "Unanswered" and I get "Community FAQ" at the top of the list posted 3 years ago, but this question (right now) resides on page 107. Right now "Unanswered" and "Newest" are in competition rather than compatible options – AlexC Jan 27 '12 at 19:07
  • um if you click on unanswered tab there are four subtabs "my tags", "newest", "votes" and "no answers". This question is currently 3rd on the "newest" sub tab of unanswered. Here's the link – Some Helpful Commenter Jan 27 '12 at 19:15
  • Conrad, I promise, I'm not trying to be frustrating or obtuse. You are right, about another way of finding this question. I'll try one more time and if not, I'll shut the question down myself. If I click "Unanswered" then click "My tags" it automatically sorts by highest number of votes. Why wouldn't it make sense to let me select my sort order. I think the other thing that's been confusing this, is the use of the word "sort." "My tags" is a criteria, if a question doesn't match, it isn't displayed. "My tags" isn't a sort, ie "sort by newest" or "sort by "no answer" within "My tags" – AlexC Jan 27 '12 at 19:26
  • Alex I'm also not trying to be frustrating either. I'm just trying to understand what you're looking for and why in the hopes that I can help. That said I'm guessing its unlikely due to high traffic of SO that we'll ever get arbitrary sorting. You can however do searches and then use the sorting that's available to get close to what you want. For example this search for php with 0 answers sorted by newest might prove helpful. – Some Helpful Commenter Jan 27 '12 at 20:04

Since I've never operated a website with the level of traffic of SO, I bow to greater experience and close the question. As mentioned above, "its unlikely due to high traffic of SO that we'll ever get arbitrary sorting."

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