Why is it not considered appropriate to ask for the comparison between two specific software that are supposed to do the same thing?

Personally, I generally seek out comparison articles on software (and hardware, lawn mowers, kitchen appliances, etc.) before deciding which to buy. On StackOverflow I asked about the comparison between VisualGDB and WinGDB. I looked over much of the web related to these plugins, but was unable to find any real feature comparison article or blog. I felt that such information would be valuable and would have been a good fit for StackOverflow as I have used similar comparison type articles in the past.

  • 1
    Link us the question. We might re-open it. – Mysticial Feb 15 '13 at 2:19
  • 6
    The argument for polling questions always comes down to: "It would fulfill a demand unmet by other sites on the internet". Perhaps, but it does not fit here, since the current Q&A format (especially the associated voting system) breaks down in the face of opinion polls or reviews. If you are only asking for listing of feature differences present, I might be able to get behind that, but comparison articles are tough to accommodate. – user200500 Feb 15 '13 at 2:22
  • Perhaps I worded it poorly or it is inappropriate, but I would find the information useful... stackoverflow.com/questions/14880584/… – Jason Feb 15 '13 at 16:08

I would consider comparing two technologies constructive because:

  • it saves others the effort of doing the same comparison. Jeff comments in Gorilla vs. Shark that,
    • "We expect questions to do some basic research before even asking." - where should this research be done on aspects that are simply not discussed effectively elsewhere on the web? Example: Testing Meteor apps. The argument continues:
    • "Did you compare and contrast them yourself?" - again, why not let that comparison be done here, preferably in the question body? And finally:
    • "What are others saying?" - where exactly would others say anything?
  • it provides a good starting point in helping one make their own decision
  • it can highlight aspects to compare against that the user might not have initially considered, lacking advanced knowledge on the topic. Many users want to learn which solution to use before expending a lot of effort learning both solutions, only to find out one doesn't actually meet their criteria - something that an already experienced user could share if the question stayed open.

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