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I am not sure if this is possible but anyways here it is.

Currently the stackoverflow page looks like this. There is lot of unused space on the left and right

enter image description here

Is it possible to put something useful in that space? For example, I would love to see the top 5 series as shown in the screenshot below.

enter image description here

Post discussions in comments.

Alternatively we can have widgets so that users with higher resolution can opt in for them?

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    There might be 400px of whitespace on your screen, but not on mine (I have less than 190px there). Don't assume everyone's running at huge resolutions in maximized browser windows. – Charles Dec 10 '13 at 19:37
  • @Charles: Hmm that is interesting. I have checked it on IE and Chrome as well. It is there for me in all the browsers/ – Siddharth Rout Dec 10 '13 at 19:38
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    That is because of your pixel density. The best approach is for you to zoom the page. Another approach would be for stackexchange to detect these large gaps and then zoom for you. However, placing content in there is kind of bad idea. – Travis J Dec 10 '13 at 19:41
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    @SiddharthRout He's saying that not everyone uses the same screen size, and not everyone has the their window maximized. There are a lot of people out there who only keep their browser windows at half screen sized, and keep something else open on the other side of the screen. – animuson Dec 10 '13 at 19:41
  • @animuson: Yes I understood that. The comment was edited and I was actually replying to it... – Siddharth Rout Dec 10 '13 at 19:42
  • @Travis: Why is it a bad idea? – Siddharth Rout Dec 10 '13 at 19:43
  • @SiddharthRout - Because for users who do not see that "blank space" their view will be disrupted. – Travis J Dec 10 '13 at 19:43
  • @TravisJ Perhaps have widgets for people with higher resolutions then so that we can opt in for that? – Siddharth Rout Dec 10 '13 at 19:47
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    I use that space for my post-it notes, you insensitive clod! – jscs Dec 10 '13 at 19:56
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    @JoshCaswell: lol then don't opt for the widgets. Apparently you didn't read my question correctly. You can choose which widget to apply ;) – Siddharth Rout Dec 10 '13 at 19:58
  • @Josh was making a joke :-P – Doorknob Dec 10 '13 at 20:21
  • @Doorknob: I know and hence my comment started with lol ;) – Siddharth Rout Dec 10 '13 at 20:22
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    What? Not everyone uses a 27" monitors to browse SO? Damn, you guys are so 2012 with your 21" monitors.... – Laf Dec 10 '13 at 20:54
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This is what my view of Stack Overflow looks like right now:

enter image description here

This is Chrome maximized on my laptop. Not much whitespace to work with at all.

Even if there were more space, I hesitate to put more and more information up. The focus of the page should be the questions. Add too much more on either side, and we'll end up too much like those other Q&A sites where it's hard to tell what is even happening.

As far as creating widgets goes, I don't hate the idea, but I also kinda like the relatively clean look we have now. On some devices I run with a higher resolution and more whitespace. On others, I'm really cramped for space. I think adding widgets would introduce more complexity and ultimately worse UX to the point where few would install them, in which case why are we even building them. :)

Granted, that's speculation. But considering how much work would have to go into adjusting the site design, defining which widgets would exist, building UI for managing them, etc. I'd like to be more sure that it's probably a good idea before we even start.

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  • Thanks Anna. I just edited my question. Can we not have widgets? So that if I want to have them then I can opt for them. Zooming my FF screen really looks weird. – Siddharth Rout Dec 10 '13 at 19:49
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    @SiddharthRout I don't hate the idea of widgets, but I also kinda like the relatively clean look we have now. On some devices I run with a higher resolution and more whitespace. On others, I'm really cramped for space. I think adding widgets would introduce more complexity and ultimately worse UX. – Adam Lear Dec 10 '13 at 19:51
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    @SiddharthRout - You can always make a user script. – Travis J Dec 10 '13 at 19:52
  • So I should assume that this suggestion will not be incorporated and close the question? :) – Siddharth Rout Dec 10 '13 at 19:54
  • @TravisJ: Wish I knew how to write userscripts ;) I wouldn't have asked a question here :D – Siddharth Rout Dec 10 '13 at 19:54
  • One quick clarification regarding what you said... I think adding widgets would introduce more complexity and ultimately worse UX. Are you referring from Coding Perspective or UI Perspective Because if it is UI then it really doesn't matter because if I don't like the look I will not install the widget. – Siddharth Rout Dec 10 '13 at 20:03
  • @SiddharthRout UI. I think the experience will be bad for people who install the widgets to the point where few would install them, in which case why are we even building them. :) Granted, that's speculation. But considering how much work would have to go into adjusting the site design, defining which widgets would exist, building UI for managing them, etc. I'd like to be more sure that it's probably a good idea before we even start. – Adam Lear Dec 10 '13 at 20:07
  • I'd like to be more sure that it's probably a good idea before we even start. By looking at the downvotes, I already feel that no one wants to have that widget so I guess I will rest my case. :) Request you to please add the text from your last comment to your answer because that is what exactly answers my query and also so that I can accept it :) – Siddharth Rout Dec 10 '13 at 20:10
  • @SiddharthRout done :) – Adam Lear Dec 10 '13 at 20:12
  • Thank You and Much appreciated for taking out time to reply to my questions rather than just downvoting from the sidelines ;) – Siddharth Rout Dec 10 '13 at 20:13

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