What is the shortest but surest way to describe my Stack Overflow (or other Stack Exchange) account?

For example, in conference speaker bio fields I cannot provide a link and do not want to include a URL such as:


If I mention basil-bourque, that seems to provide poor results for searching. In the Stack Overflow “Search Q&A” search box, entering that value generates a list of 155 results, but I have far more posts, so I have no idea where that particular number of 155 came from. If I type that value of basil-bourque into the search box on StackOverflow.com/users, I get results of No users matched your search.

If I use a space instead of the hyphen, basil bourque, I get the same mysterious 155 hits when using the "Search Q&A" box. If using that value in the search box on StackOverflow.com/users, it does show my name and icon, but also a mysterious 40 number that appears to be my reputation but my reputation is far higher, so that is not a good first impression.

When looking at my Profile page, I notice the “Search Q&A” box shows user:642706. Is that the best short-but-effective user handle that I should use? I do not like that it lacks any mention of my name, but c’est la vie if that is what I must use.

I did read posts such as listed below that describe problems with searching for user names, but none of them prescribe a solution for my need of a short-but-effective user handle.

  • 1
    The 40 is your reputation gained this week. If you look on the right on that same page you'll find the word week highlighted. Jun 13, 2016 at 5:45

2 Answers 2


I would still go for the URL, but then a little shortened to http://stackoverflow.com/u/642706/ (it will autocomplete your user name).

Every other solution will not work as good as the URL, which is a direct pointer to your user profile. You could describe the way to go to that page, but that would be rather inefficient and error prone since the site navigation could change any time.

Sometimes, you can use a high ranked post in Google to find your profile, still not efficient and quite error prone, but it will do. Try to find my profile through searching using Google for html5 datetime, and take the first hit on SO.

  • It gives a 404 on my end @soup Oh... It needs a trailing slash. I already tried the shortened URL before but I missed the slash too... Thanks Jun 13, 2016 at 7:49
  • Strange. Indeed. Not sure what I did wrong then... Jun 13, 2016 at 7:52
  • 1
    works without the trailing slash, you probably missed the last character when copying the URL, e.g. stackoverflow.com/u/64270 Jun 13, 2016 at 7:56
  • Yeah, I guess so... Jun 13, 2016 at 7:57

Google is your friend. :)

Seriously though, most simple way that won't require people to remember or type weird numbers, is by using Google search of your name followed by Stack Overflow i.e. "Basil Bourque Stack Overflow". (with or without quotes.)

You can instruct people to follow these extra simple steps:

  1. Open Chrome browser.
  2. Type this into the address bar: Basil Bourque Stack Overflow:

  3. Hit Enter or click with the mouse the highlighted item.



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