After the newest iteration of revising the top bar navigation the unanswered (or was it need answer) filter option, the one that lists questions that had no upvoted or accepted answers, was removed from the need answers tab. But it has been a long-established practice on SE to put specific emphasis on questions that do not have positively scored or accepted answers, which is SE's notion of "unanswered" and is used in various contexts, especially in the "Unanswered" tab of the old navigation bar, and has always seemed like a very useful filter criterium.

I was thus surprised when it suddenly vanished from the new navigation. First I thought that it might be just refitted under the new name of all, which previously showed more or less all questions unfiltered (and was thus intentionally redundant to the same filter option under the new tab). But after more thorough inspection, all does actually list questions with accepted answers, too. But on the other hand, it doesn't list all the questions that new -> all shows either. So maybe the previous option for showing "unanswered" questions has somehow been merged with the previous option that showed "all" in some kind of way.

So first of all, what are the exact criteria by which the all and no answer options in the need answers tab actually filter their questions? And as a follow up question, why was the option that listed "unanswered" questions (in the SE sense of the word) removed from the need answers tab? What was the motivation for dropping such an established filtering criterium and how do the new filters accommodate or improve its use?

1 Answer 1


We've only added bountied questions to the old "need answers" sort and renamed it to all. If you want to see literally all questions, you can do so from the "new" tab.

enter image description here

So, these are basically the historical algorithms, just labeled slightly differently.

  • 1
    Nice diagram, but the arrows seem rather useless Commented Jul 25, 2015 at 16:54
  • Ah, ok, it seems the question with the accepted answer that I saw in the "all" list just had a bounty. Ok, now this makes sense (and is better than the previously redundant "all"). But I have to wonder about the "this is not guaranteed in the future" part. Do you have active plans to alter the significance that questions without accepted or upvoted answers have? Commented Jul 25, 2015 at 17:00
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    @Mat'sMug feel free to edit in a better diagram! I just had inkscape available, and it's not easy to use red freehands with that.
    – Sklivvz
    Commented Jul 25, 2015 at 17:42
  • @ChristianRau we have no plan, however you should take "all" to mean "all questions that need answers" instead of literally the algorithm. How we determine what needs to be answered is bound to change at some point.
    – Sklivvz
    Commented Jul 25, 2015 at 18:11

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