8

On Stack Overflow there are a lot of newbie questions that simply write down their thoughts as plain text without giving any example.

One always need to ask for some code or for an error message. This is makes it even harder when dealing with new users because they are (to my experience) quite slow with a comment/update-loop.

Have there been any efforts in this direction?

I know that there are questions that don't require code, but after all, on a site like Stack Overflow with 95% questions about code, it would make sense to at least ask the user if they couldn't add some code to their question.

Something like this, just above the "Post your Question" button, would only be displayed if the markdown parser doesn't encounter any code (be it indented code, or something within backticks).

Your question doesn't contain any code. With a code example, other users can help you more easily

The user could override this with the checkbox if their question is not code based.

10
  • 5
    Not all questions without code are theoretical. What about questions about using an IDE, for example.
    – yannis
    Apr 2, 2014 at 13:05
  • 2
    The wording is just a quick write up. I know that there might be more cases where there is no need for code, this is up for discussion.
    – akirk
    Apr 2, 2014 at 13:05
  • 1
    "◻ I know, the question I am asking does not involve code" Apr 2, 2014 at 13:11
  • I'm not 100% sure that would be a horrible idea; perhaps only for new users. Apr 2, 2014 at 13:16
  • 8
    "◻ I know, I want someone to write the code for me." Apr 2, 2014 at 13:18
  • @BilltheLizard it would be funny if this weren't true so often :)
    – akirk
    Apr 2, 2014 at 13:18
  • 1
    If you are going to do that, might it be helpful to also add a note to list/explain any errors? At least in the Android tag, we are constantly asking for logcat output. Obviously, it wouldn't be able to check for this but just a note to users with say <50 rep to post the errors also.
    – codeMagic
    Apr 2, 2014 at 13:18
  • @codeMagic I think I vaguely remember someone suggesting tag-specific prompts. In the RequireJS corner we often have to ask for the RequireJS configuration (because a great deal of issues originate there) and for any console errors.
    – Louis
    Apr 2, 2014 at 13:20
  • @akirk Sure, and BoltClock'saUnicorn already came up with a better wording. However, I more meant to say that there are a lot more questions without code than 5%. In any case, this might be useful newer users.
    – yannis
    Apr 2, 2014 at 13:21
  • 1
    @Louis tag specific would be even better I'm just not sure how soon anything like that would get through. I would like low rep users of the Android tag to be required to read a certain post about how to get logcat output and how to read it. Though, I realize that may be a tall order.
    – codeMagic
    Apr 2, 2014 at 13:22

0

Browse other questions tagged .