Wouldn't it be great, if we could see the question, as it is getting typed? It would let us see the subject of question earlier, and post an answer as soon, as it is posted itself?

It could be a section, like Questions Preview, and you'll have access to the question with tag that you have at least, let's say, 100 up-votes. So you would be able to browse these questions as people are typing them, and see:"Aha, i know that thing, he'll be happy to see the answer right as he finishes".

Of course, people don't have to see any indicators of that their question is being watched by someone - it may influence their behavior. But i think, that i would let the one-line-answer questions be answered even sooner.

What do you, guys, think about that?

  • 2
    I forgot you had to hang around for hours to get an answer on Stack Overflow after posting a question... Oh, wait.
    – Matt
    Jun 21 '12 at 21:25
  • 11
    That's a bad idea. As long as I did not press the "Post Your Question" button I know the question has not yet been posted - and for good reason. What if I change my mind? Even chats don't show what's being types until the one who writes sends it. Jun 21 '12 at 21:26
  • 7
    I guess I'd have to stop filling the title box with expletives when I can't think of a title
    – Ben Brocka
    Jun 21 '12 at 21:29
  • 1
    Why so serious? It's what we do.
    – yannis
    Jun 21 '12 at 21:39
  • Cool idea, but I don't think that would work.
    – Hope4You
    Jul 28 '12 at 19:29

Scenario 0

User A copy-pastes code or traces containing confidential information (names, passwords, ...), then blanks it out in the editor. User B grabs the confidential information. User A is unaware.


  • Yeah, this stuff actually gets posted often enough as it is. I think we can do without stealthily revealing it on users' behalf. Jun 21 '12 at 21:58
  • By default, the feature is off, so this scenario wouldn't work Jun 22 '12 at 5:58
  • You mean you'd have a checkbox “allow others to see my question before I post it”, not ticked by default? That contradicts what you wrote in your question (“people don't have to see any indicators of that their question is being watched by someone - it may influence their behavior”). Jun 22 '12 at 7:56
  • Yes, they would have a checkbox, but they wouldn't know, if they are being watched in this particular moment - the can be, thougt. Jun 22 '12 at 11:39

This would cause more confusion and irritance than anything.

Scenario 1:

User A starts typing a question and gets ~2 paragraphs in. User B goes off to look for an answer or research something related to it. User A decides he doesn't like how the question was typed, or wants to ask it in a completely different way; he deletes the entire context and re-types three new paragraphs. User B returns and goes "wtf?"

Scenario 2:

User A starts typing a question that User B knows the answer to. User A finds his answer while typing from the suggestions that the site provides and decides to discontinue the question (as it would be a duplicate). User B is a sad panda.

Lots of different things can happen to a question while it is still being composed. You can't accurately answer it until the question itself is complete.

  • 6
    Yet another scenario: Before I click the "Post your question" button, I haven't explicitly granted use of my content to Stack Exchange under the CC-Wiki license.
    – yannis
    Jun 21 '12 at 21:40

I think that the speed of answering a question is already fast enough, it would be hard/impossible to implement, and the load on the server would not be manageable; it would need to constantly track what is being typed to display it, which is useless 99.9% of the time.

It would be cool, but I don't think it makes sense.

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