So, the edit queue on SO seems to be full for the last days or so. That's a tough situation. What I saw is that every time somebody raises this issue here on Meta the queue starts to drop significantly (at least that's what I saw yesterday, when it dropped within 10 minutes by 50 edits).

This spawns the thought in my brain that there are actually many high-rep-SO-users here on Meta which are willing to help with that, but simply do not bother to look at the queue or even Stack Overflow itself (anymore).

Would it help if we had some kind of "status of the parent"-section here in the header of Meta, which displays such information and raises bathelp-signal whenever the queue gets alarming high?

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    With merely 8 rep to go to get edit privledges on M.SO I would support having the edit queue visible to 2k users - for MSO only - to help stem the tide. This may help but doesn't buy you help. (something about being the heroes MSO needs and deserves - or maybe just need) – tombull89 Apr 20 '12 at 9:43
  • @tombull89 I think you misunderstand. The problem is the Queue on SO. The proposal is to alert the reviewers that spend their time on meta that the queue on SO is full. – Daniel Fischer Apr 20 '12 at 9:54
  • @DanielFischer, in that case, yes, I have. I thought the question meant the edit queue on MSO, not SO. – tombull89 Apr 20 '12 at 9:57
  • If you think the edit queue on SO is bad, try the mod flag queue. You have many people who can help with the edit queue on SO. With the mod queue, we have MANY more flags than you ever have edits, and just twelve people to process it. In other words, suck it up! =P – casperOne Apr 20 '12 at 11:47
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    For example, I'm looking at 110 edits vs. 317 flags. Moderators laugh at the edit queue; we eat that for breakfast. =) – casperOne Apr 20 '12 at 11:48
  • @casperOne: I'm sure we are eager and ready to help you with that, too. ;D – Time Traveling Bobby Apr 20 '12 at 11:55
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    I think the only sensible thing to do is to make the "suggested edits" counter at the top of the screen blink. – Bill the Lizard Apr 20 '12 at 12:10
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    @BilltheLizard It has to blink with the same frequency as the mode queue flag count but phase shifted by π/2 so that one is "on" while the other is "off" – casperOne Apr 20 '12 at 13:19
  • We had a fairly large atypical increase in activity this week, increased the queue size from 160 to 200, and allowed users to approve/reject 10 extra edits a day – waffles Apr 20 '12 at 13:28

I am not sure adding this on meta is the right place. Only a very small amount of meta users have the rights to approve edits. The fact the queue has been ailing is a symptom of a bigger issue; I would like to attack the root cause.

In particular:

  1. The volume of suggested edits was much increased in the last few days.
  2. Quite a few key users who approve edits were out of votes.
  3. We have some workflow issues, people keep on seeing the same edits in random mode (even though they do not know how to handle them) - usually gets much worse as the queue fills up.

To attack this:

  1. I increased the amount of suggested edit votes that a user can cast.
  2. I increased the queue size to 200 as a stop gap (to handle the large load increase)
  3. I am thinking of a clean UI that allows you to stop seeing the same edits you can not handle, over and over again (an ignore button perhaps)

I like that meta gets involved at resolving this, but want to build a system that can work without pulling in people from meta. (Where do we stop then and inbox message to users who vote on edits a lot soliciting help, an email perhaps ... it is a dangerous game to play)

also we kind of have a bat signal ... so many of the posts on meta in the last day are about suggested edits

  • Are you sure? It only takes 2 users to approve an edit. If a mere three or four people see the link and help out that queue could be cleared quite quickly. But I do like increasing edit votes, so hopefully that'll fix matters. – Adam Rackis Apr 20 '12 at 16:59
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    @AdamRackis But as soon as you've moved a dozen or so suggestions out of the queue, the new suggestions push in. – Daniel Fischer Apr 20 '12 at 18:36
  • @Daniel - suggested edits will always be coming in, and being approved, etc. This question is just asking whether, when the queue gets really backed up, if it would make sense to (subtly) make MSO users aware, so some can go help out if they want. I think that would make sense, but Waffles might be able to fix this issue in a simpler way. – Adam Rackis Apr 20 '12 at 22:26
  • @Adam yes, that would make sense. But I think your mere three or four people to clear the queue are overly optimistic. To get it really down, you need a couple more. – Daniel Fischer Apr 20 '12 at 22:33
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    +1, an ignore button would be the best option but if it's too complicated putting a users favourite tags towards the top, as with the interesting questions tab would be great! – ben is uǝq backwards May 5 '12 at 14:41
  • Showing edits that already have one vote before edits with no votes will reduce the length of the queue quicker, I also like Ben’s ideal of using tags to show edits I am more likely to be interested in. May be also have a smaller limit on the number of edits a given user can do with the edit queue is getting long. – Ian Ringrose May 15 '12 at 12:44

Not having full access to any edit queue, I can't comment on this.

But I can save the devs a bit of work and create the display for it:

javascript:$('body').append($('<img src="http://i.stack.imgur.com/HWIXw.png" id=batsymb>'));function A(){for(i=0;i-DIL;i++){DIS=DI[i].style;DIS.position="absolute";DIS.left=Math.sin(R*x1+i*x2+x3)*x4+x5+"px";DIS.top=Math.cos(R*y1+i*y2+y3)*y4+y5+"px"}R++}R=0;x1=.1;y1=.05;x2=.25;y2=.24;x3=1.6;y3=.24;x4=300;y4=200;x5=300;y5=200;DI=$("#batsymb");DIL=DI.length;setInterval(A,20);void 0

(it's a bookmarklet--try it)

  • Bwahaha...this is awesome! Should be a comment, though. ;) – Time Traveling Bobby Apr 20 '12 at 9:49
  • @Kobobby: I didn't think the bookmarklet would fit (turns out it does). *shrug*. – Manishearth Apr 20 '12 at 9:52
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    @Kobobby: Anyway, I CWd it since it's just a bit of fun :) – Manishearth Apr 20 '12 at 9:57
  • Superb!! I love it. – vascowhite Apr 20 '12 at 10:15

I'm pretty sure I'm not the only 10K SO user who spends way, way more time here on MSO than on SO. If you guys were to throw up a signal when the SO edit queue were full, I for one would be happy to jump over there and help out.

Why not put a link to the SO queue in the MSO header when it starts to get clogged? But only if you have sufficient SO rep to actually access the queue, obviously.

Something like this?

enter image description here

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    +3 freehand circles. -1 not enough jQuery, -1 no flying bat-signal. – Manishearth Apr 20 '12 at 15:55
  • Hey, welcome back! I deleted the other post. Like the new system banner? I've been up to my old hijinks as you can see haha. – casperOne Jun 6 '12 at 16:40
  • @casper - no worries - I can do without that 20 meta rep. Old hijinks? Got a link to share of someone whining about you killing their Q? – Adam Rackis Jun 6 '12 at 16:43
  • Well, the current system banner is me, I created this monstrosity and I'm also telling people to be nice. And I have about 1K more worthless meta rep than you now. Welcome back! – casperOne Jun 6 '12 at 16:49

When enough questions are in the edit queue, there is a little orange button next to the review link with the # of questions in the queue (at least, I think that's the case.... I'm not that familiar with the internal workings of SE and its not active now so I can't verify this)

I spent a lot of time not knowing what that was, or thinking it was something I shouldn't touch, but perhaps you can add a tooltip to that button for users who are active on SO, but not on meta, that says something like "Help! Our edit queue needs the attention of high-rep users like you!"

Should be fairly simple to implement, and would have a similar effect as creating something on meta (except the people seeing it are high-rep users who browse SO, not MSO users, which I think is better)


and perhaps change the orange square to a bat icon too for the sake of bat-lovers everywhere? :)

  • There is a tooltip that says "suggested edits pending approval", but I don't know if it's always been there. – Tim Post Apr 22 '12 at 15:39
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    The number of suggested edits on the top of the page is only visible to 10k users; 5k users don't see that number. – kiamlaluno Apr 23 '12 at 15:35

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