On the main page, I know that the HNQs are sorted by "hotness points", in descending order.

However, this order is not used when displaying HNQ in the sidebar on various sites. (Or for the one single HNQ which is displayed in the feed of the mobile apps.)

Neither is there enough space to display all the HNQs in the sidebar at once, so only a selection is shown.

So how are these picked, and how is the order determined ?

  1. Is it a totally random selection and ordering of the current HNQs?
  2. Will all users see the same HNQs on any given page at a particular time?
  3. Does number of "hotness points" affect the likeliness that a certain HNQ will be displayed on a page?
  4. Will the system rotate the HNQs across different pages so that all can be seen?
  5. Are there other factors?
  • 1
    consider editing to explain whether your question is addressed by the answer here or not. To avoid misunderstanding I do not insist on whether it is or not, just ask to clarify that if possible. "All we are doing is randomizing the list of 100 before we pull some off the top, instead of pulling the top X every time." – gnat Aug 25 '16 at 15:19
  • ...for a bit more detailed (but still somewhat vague) explanation refer this comment: "I shoulda just credited Jon Skeet, since apparently it's his implementation of the shuffle algorithm at work here" – gnat Aug 25 '16 at 15:23
  • @gnat That's useful, thanks! I'm not sure if it's fully explained, and I don't understand it well enough to specify. Not sure how to edit. – Revetahw says Reinstate Monica Aug 25 '16 at 16:11
  • as far as I can tell your edit in rev 3 suffices to help see the difference – gnat Aug 25 '16 at 16:45
  • @gnat Cool, good to know. – Revetahw says Reinstate Monica Aug 25 '16 at 16:46

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