I submit to you the following quartet of indisputable facts:

  1. Stack Overflow is for people who are bored at work.
  2. Having animations and video games are more exciting (and therefore less boring) than not having animations and video games.
  3. Chrono Trigger is the best video game ever made.
  4. Downvoting, closing and deleting things is the highlight of my day.

So I propose the following indisputably fantastic feature request:

Crono animated actions!
Crono is so manly

Crono will destroy you Instead of that usual boring grey downvote arrow turning orange, a little animated Crono sprite coming from offscreen to beat the living crap out of the question's (or answer's) score, dealing it 1 damage and reducing its HP accordingly.

Crono is a time-travelling ninja Instead of closing a question, Crono could fly down and use his special Confuse attack against it, leaving it injured and defenseless.

Crono is the natural predator of Lavos And for the coup-de-grace, deleting a question, Crono will appear out of nowhere and cast his ultimate attack, Luminaire, against it. Not even Lavos can stand up to the awesome obliterating power of Crono's Luminaire attack.

This new feature will make Stack Overflow much less boring to use and will draw in the retro-SNES programming crowd which, according to my made-up-just-now statistic will draw in at least 25% more totally rad programmers:

These new programmers will be naturally good at answering concurrency questions because they are easily able to grok the temporal distortions and causality loopholes that are commonplace in multithreaded systems.

Are you going to let Lavos destroy Stack Overflow? No! Help Crono help you, no matter what time it is!

  • 19
    @peacedog: Having played both Chrono Trigger and Robot Dinosaurs that Shoot Beams When they Roar, I can safely say that Chrono Trigger offers superior entertainment value in the long term, while Robot Dinosaurs that Shoot Beams When they Roar offers a relatively large spike of short-term entertainment. Overall, Chrono Trigger is the greatest game known the man. Definitely better than whatever Final Fantasy games they're making nowadays.
    – Welbog
    Jan 8 '10 at 13:58
  • 5
    +1 for lolz (15 chars)
    – Jon Seigel
    Jan 8 '10 at 14:00
  • 12
    @random: I don't think you understand the word "indisputable".
    – Welbog
    Jan 8 '10 at 14:06
  • 7
    +1 for the rad graph Jan 8 '10 at 14:32
  • 4
    Andrew Moore or Jonathan Sampson need to placate with some Greasemonkey for now.
    – random
    Jan 8 '10 at 14:35
  • 1
    I agree we definitely need more animated GIFs on SO. Jan 8 '10 at 15:07
  • 1
    Ahhh, Meta Friday, how I've missed you! OK, so ChronoTrigger, so not the best game ever. Not even in the ballpark. And I love me some seriously retro games. But I gotta give this +1 anyway; I just can't help it. It's probably for the rad graph.
    – John Rudy
    Jan 8 '10 at 15:29
  • 1
    @Termifish: Go buy yourself a dictionary and look up "indisputable" for me, would you?
    – Welbog
    Jan 8 '10 at 15:34
  • 4
    @Gaspar: Is that kind of like the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world? What's all the damn fighting about then?
    – John Rudy
    Jan 8 '10 at 16:59
  • 16
    picking up the dictionary and flipping through the pages... incontinence, no... insult, oops, have to go back... ahh, here - indisputable (adj): Used by Super Mario Landians if they know they are wrong and therefore have no arguments left. Best thing to do is ignoring their statements completely. Well, that's fine with me :) Jan 8 '10 at 17:03
  • 2
    +1 for the MS Paint graph
    – Heather M
    Jan 8 '10 at 17:36
  • 2
    I don't want it, but +1 for entertainment value.
    – Margaret
    Jan 8 '10 at 20:28
  • 9
    Obviously I am a tremendous hit with the ladies of Meta.
    – Welbog
    Jan 8 '10 at 20:40
  • 26
    I have no idea what any of this means, but +1 WOULD READ AGAIN A+++ Jan 9 '10 at 9:30
  • 3
    Best idea ever I think. Jeff, stop whatever you are doing now, and implement this feature! Stack Overflow will only benefit from more TOTALLY RAD programmmers.
    – TM.
    Jan 9 '10 at 16:06

I don't know who that fancy schmancy "Crono" guy of yours is, but do you remember this guy:

Commander Keen

Here's the Greasemonkey script to have Commander Keen help you out with downvoting:

install scriptview source

In case you're not brave enough to try it out, or too nice to ever downvote, or not greasy enough to have a monkey installed, here's a crappy screencast to give you the idea.

Happy downvoting.

  • 2
    Make that Crono, and you have yourself an accepted answer.
    – Welbog
    Mar 6 '10 at 15:52
  • 15
    @NIfE: Whatever, dude. Commander Keen FTW.
    – balpha
    Mar 6 '10 at 15:57
  • 3
    No way! This really works? How long did this take to do? I'm not greasy enough for a monkey but I might install it just to see this in action. And +10000 for Commander Keen - I've never heard about this other guy.
    – Pekka
    Mar 6 '10 at 18:02
  • @Pekka: About four hours net, I'd say. Most of it is jQuery magic.
    – balpha
    Mar 6 '10 at 18:37
  • @balpha brilliant work, I think I'll check it out. That Crono must be some obscure canadian thing. Are those maple leaves on his head?
    – Pekka
    Mar 6 '10 at 19:01
  • 2
    This deserves that big green checkmark for the effort. Good work, balpha. Now we just need to turn Keen against Atwood to fight his conspiracy!
    – Welbog
    Mar 19 '10 at 10:44
  • 1
    +1 for the mooning at the end!
    – Ether
    Apr 14 '10 at 17:50
  • 2
    @Ether: Most of the credit goes to ID Software for actually drawing those sprites (it's an easter egg in Keen 4)
    – balpha
    Apr 15 '10 at 8:52
  • I Used to play Keen, and someday I got angry. This game sucks, sorry Chrono is way better. Nov 23 '10 at 14:51
  • Hey, it works in Opera without any greasy monkeys at all! Wonderful, I <3 it!! AAA+++++++!!! Mar 3 '11 at 8:51
  • 2
    @balpha Please consider adding a userscript for the dancing uniprong ponies to this answer or as a new answer to this question.
    – Pollyanna
    Apr 14 '11 at 15:58
  • Happy to be of service.
    – Keen
    Apr 4 '12 at 2:30
  • This just replaced my Unicorn voting script.
    – Dennis
    Apr 28 '12 at 4:19
  • Awesome script! Modified to work on gravatars as well github.com/Manishearth/Manish-Codes/blob/master/StackExchange/… May 29 '12 at 4:45
  • Should this work on Firefox 13? I installed it without apparent effect. I'd love to get this working.
    – Mr.Wizard
    Jul 5 '12 at 8:03

I am interested in your ideas and would like to subscribe to your newsletter.


I think this is a very good idea.

This kind of thing should happen on (seemingly) random days. Much like google doodles :D

We can have a flock of birds doing all the heroic deleting and downvoting and closing on twitter's birthday.

  • 25
    -1 because I hate Twitter more than you can possibly imagine.
    – Welbog
    Jan 8 '10 at 15:19
  • Can we have the flock of birds flying on Mike Score's birthday? en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Flock_of_Seagulls
    – John Rudy
    Jan 8 '10 at 17:02
  • 2
    How is it that 9 people can "like" Wel`Bog's -1 statement, yet there's only 2 downvotes. C'mon people, back up your talk with actions! Apr 14 '10 at 3:36
  1. Stackoverflow is not boring.
  2. I read Stackoverflow posts at home when I'm sharpening the saw.

I'm not necessarily against making the site more entertaining.
But it is quite engaging as presently constituted.

  • 2
    30000 feet and climbing.
    – squillman
    Jan 8 '10 at 19:14

This idea clearly isn't entertaining enough, being almost totally focused on the voter/editor and not the recipient. So, I think the recipient of the votes/edits should also get some screen candy. Perhaps, for example, when they receive a downvote a little animation should cross out their old score, write in the new one, then blow a raspberry. I nominate Frog for this role.

  • 5
    If SO blew me a raspberry for being downvoted, I think I would shlort coffee through my nose and onto my keyboard. Hilarious, but bad for productivity.
    – Heather M
    Jan 8 '10 at 17:38
  • 4
    Isn't SO itself bad for productivity?
    – John Rudy
    Jan 8 '10 at 20:01
  • @Termifish: Depends how stuck you are...
    – Svish
    Jan 9 '10 at 14:26
  • I'm stuck pretty bad. Jan 9 '10 at 19:57
  • I'm stuck pretty good.
    – John Rudy
    Jan 10 '10 at 7:02
  1. Write a browser plug-in to make voting or any other aspect of the site more entertaining
  2. Profit
  3. Wash, rinse, repeat for the rest of the Stack Exchange sites

On a serious note, I hope SO will not have any animation with bright multi-colored characters or flocks of birds. When I am programming, I am not bored at all, and I don't want to have any distractions. Right now the design is extremely elegant and usable, and extremely fast, and I'd rather see it stay this way. If anybody is into plugins, no problem; and I love Commander Keen too, but you know, less is more.

  • 4
    I like this answer simply for the last paragraph! Oct 8 '13 at 16:04
  • 2
    @Andrew Barber: I went on and removed everything but the last paragraph.
    – user179079
    Oct 8 '13 at 16:41
  • +0 for serious answer. That's right. You ain't seeing Commander Keen. Oct 8 '13 at 18:38

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