In the old days before the review queue I've used data.se to help with my own personal "review queue". I would grab certain queries and just use them to help data mine things. This sucked because after a few weeks, the dumps were out of date. But now they're weekly. So .......

Here's an example, for Ask Ubuntu I wanted to know how many people self-answered their own questions, but were lost in the cruft and couldn't get the question out of "unanswered"

As it ends up, these questions are either an easy upvote, or "Too localized". It feels rather binary, either it was "never mind I fixed it" or the person really took the time to help the next person out. Either way, a relatively easy thing to action on, and I've found some pretty decent content in there.

While listening to the latest podcast it was mentioned that the team wants to hear more ideas, so initially I thought "Aha! I want to make this query a review item, and I'm going to convince them that it's awesome."

Then I thought about it and realized, my data query is gold for Ask Ubuntu, it might be crap for Sci-fi, and who knows about SO. So I was thinking what if each community could craft it's own data.se queries (shared network wide), and then say the top 2 ones with the most outstanding items show up in the queue. I don't mean queries like "How Jon Skeet am I?", but the ones that really help dissect the data in new ways other than the front page.

And then these just rotate out. So think if 2 "slots" in the review queues were maintenance queries the community could vote on. Maybe my query will be good review gold for a while, and 3 months later it hits zero, so toss in another one, and so on.

Some examples from Ask Ubuntu:

So the idea is, each SE has data queries they'd like to see "stuck in the queue", and every once in a while, a peer reviewed query would hit the queue and people could action on it for a few weeks. This also conveniently handles all the "foo should be in the review queue" feature requests, each community can just craft their own queries based on their needs and toss it into a rotation.

  • 2
    I'd love to write some queries.. But I can't find information on how they work, or how to get started.
    – ɥʇǝS
    Commented Apr 2, 2013 at 17:06

1 Answer 1


This isn't really feasible because where you're running those queries isn't live data and doesn't match our production schema. This would require: a) rewriting the query in almost every case and b) querying against production database servers.

Also (and this is the really big one) 5 of the top 10 most expensive queries we run are from the review queue, this is measured in average CPU/sec which is the only aggregate we can bottleneck on. That's with me optimizing them and having extensive knowledge of our indexing scheme - and the ability to add/tweak indexes (note: indexes are the same for all site databases, they're in sync, so deploying one-off indexes to support one site's queue isn't good).

The review queue is, on the database side, tremendously expensive to operate...but it's worth it because of the quality it brings to the sites.

For this proposal to work, you're basically asking me to take a SE query for every site on some interval, rewrite it, then stick it in code somewhere (we'd never let a site setting of any sort be a SQL statement - hello security, so that means a build). We just don't have the resources to do this, from a man or server power perspective.

That being said, if a query is generally useful to many sites, we'll absolutely take a look at adding it as a new permanent review queue...that's where the current queues came from. I'm just saying we can't be adding/removing queries like proposed here.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .