I am trying to ask a question with the following title:

using 'stdin' with fread

I actually tried a variety of variations on the above and it just refused to accept any title I have come up with so far, saying it doesn't "meet quality standards".

What is wrong with this title and how can I improve it so I can post my question?

  • 7
    For a start, "sentences" usually start with an upper case character. For example the title of this question should be "What exactly...?". – Felix Jul 1 '13 at 20:18
  • cool, upper case did it, thanks :) – eddi Jul 1 '13 at 20:19
  • as a side note though - that's a terrible rule – eddi Jul 1 '13 at 20:19
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    You think using proper grammar is terrible? If everyone would use their own grammar we'd have a hard time communicating. – Felix Jul 1 '13 at 20:20
  • No, I think that particular rule is terrible. – eddi Jul 1 '13 at 20:21
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    @eddi the particular rule is not "capitalize the first letter". It's "come up with a decent title". That the capitalization made it pass the filter doesn't mean you can't create a better title. If you do, everybody wins. – Bart Jul 1 '13 at 20:22
  • @Bart if the algo can be (as you think of it) gamed, then it's a bad algo – eddi Jul 1 '13 at 20:28
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    @eddi It's not perfect, as witnessed by the title you eventually got through. But it keeps the worst crap out. – Bart Jul 1 '13 at 20:29
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    If you're not going to put forth any effort in hitting the Shift key to properly capitalize, then why should we put forth any effort to help you? – user164207 Jul 1 '13 at 20:34
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    @eddi - Oh, really? How do you know that none of the people that have commented in or answered this Meta SO question are capable of helping you with your question on R? – user164207 Jul 1 '13 at 20:38
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    @eddi: I think people are downvoting you here because you asked a legitimate question, but then tried to defend your bad grammar and your ill-advised title. Meta works best when the folks who ask their questions are actually open to receiving input. – Robert Harvey Jul 1 '13 at 20:38
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    @JackManey because I know quite well who the people that can answer me with my r question are. @RobertHarvey - meta people downvoting this question is totally fine, but downvoting the other is very much against SO in every sense of what SO stands for – eddi Jul 1 '13 at 20:40
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    @eddi Don't make assumptions about downvotes. The latest comment on your SO question might indicate it's not all that good/clear after all. Take a step back and make sure it's as good as it can be. The downvotes might well be for the actual question and not some Meta result. – Bart Jul 1 '13 at 20:41
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    Downvotes do not require accompanying comments. – user164207 Jul 1 '13 at 20:43
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    @eddi "I don't really understand this question. What are you trying to do exactly?" ... and then there is the downvote tooltip on questions being unclear... – Bart Jul 1 '13 at 20:43

Put your actual question in the title.

Make it the kind of title that will be meaningful to people searching for your question in Google.

It's almost certain that your question isn't really "teach me how to use 'stdin' with fread," which would be off-topic anyway.

  • if the rule is to make it google searchable, then the title would be "stdin fread" – eddi Jul 1 '13 at 20:25
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    Uh, no... The title would be Is there an fread analog for read.csv(file = 'stdin', ...) The title needs to be what you will see as a result in the Google search, not what you are actually searching for in the Google search. – Robert Harvey Jul 1 '13 at 20:26
  • riiight, because that's what you put in google search - my search terms before posting the question was exactly "r data.table stdin fread" – eddi Jul 1 '13 at 20:27
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    The rule is, "make it clear and sensible" not "dump some keywords" @edd – random Jul 1 '13 at 20:28
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    @eddi Google search is smart enough to find your keywords inside full sentences. Otherwise, web sites would all be sporting headlines like "Obama speech Berlin jacket" or "Egypt revolution Mursi overthrow" – Pekka supports GoFundMonica Jul 1 '13 at 20:35
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    @eddi You might be amazed to discover how much better Google's search results are when you enter a real question. – paddy Jul 1 '13 at 23:26

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