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I am what I would call an "advanced hobby programmer". So I have limited in-depth technical training. I'm also the "virtual CTO" for my SaaS application. Which means I have ultimate technical responsibility for the entire scope of a complex multi-technology application. For budgetary reasons, my development team does not include senior people with broad and in-depth technical knowledge.

As a result of these constraints, I occasionally need to do problem solving on issues that I barely know the key words for in order start researching. In the process, I sometimes ask questions on Stack Exchange for which I get negative feedback in one form or another.

Question: Is there a site in the Stack Exchange network where I can answer "less informed" questions (possibly considered "dumb") in order, for example, to just get started on what to specifically research? Or if not in this network, what would you recommend?

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  • There is a place for every well written, well researched, reasonably scoped and on-topic question on Stack Exchange. When I look at your SO profile I see plenty of upvoted questions, so apparently you know how what a good question entails. Broader scoped questions, that don't have a "specific" answer are better asked elsewhere like Reddit for example. – Luuklag Jun 22 at 19:50
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    I think there have been posts suggesting to create a separate SO site just for beginners (I wasn't able to find the said posts, but it seems like this question is the same). In any case, you can ask beginner question on any site where they are on-topic, provided they are focused and not duplicates. That requires some previous research to narrow down what you need to ask. So this recommendation question is to broad (it doesn't mention any specific topic), and a duplicate of the previously mentioned post I haven't been able to find again. – bad_coder Jun 22 at 23:15
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    @bad_coder two examples of such proposals are meta.stackexchange.com/q/50409/369802 and meta.stackexchange.com/q/208745/369802 (which also links a third in the duplicate banner). – Tinkeringbell Mod Jun 23 at 12:07
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    Does this answer your question? Stack exchange for programming beginners? – bad_coder Jun 23 at 13:54
  • A human search engine for Stack Overflow is a very common use case (as search can be very, very inefficient in terms of both time and quality). Unfortunately, it is not currently supported. Currently, the closest is probably chat. – P.Mort. - forgot Clay Shirky_q Jun 23 at 15:08
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"For budgetary reasons, my development team does not include senior people with broad and in-depth technical knowledge.
As a result of these constraints, I occasionally need to do problem solving on issues that I barely know the key words for in order start researching."

Make your question better by searching on and off of our sites for words related to your area of interest and relevant to your question.

Choose the appropriate programming related site, or search for the site name using the Hamburger, you can also view our list of sites.

Find a site with similar questions and with better answers; the quality of which you would hope for your question, delivered within the timeframe you'd hope that your question would be addressed.

Some sites offer excellent answers quickly, some you may have to wait a few days but actually get a much better answer; unfortunately some sites don't address some categories of questions as well as others, even if it is on-topic on either site.

"In the process, I sometimes ask questions on Stack Exchange for which I get negative feedback in one form or another."

Instead of first thinking that the Feedback is negative try to view it as though it were helpful. Does the commenter or answerer make a fair point? Any rudeness or entirely unhelpful posts can be flagged, helpfulness should be the purpose of any replies.

"Question: Is there a site in the Stack Exchange network where I can answer "less informed" questions (possibly considered "dumb") in order, for example, to just get started on what to specifically research? Or if not in this network, what would you recommend?"

When you are new it is obvious to experienced users, and often people will try to assist newcomers with good questions; some sites have people who go out of their way to spend hours polishing your question until it's a gem, and of great value to future visitors. That is sometimes dependant on the question, could an answer only help you or is it likely to be of value to many people for years to come.

Read the Help (?) for the site chosen, view the for any specific rules about posting question (even answers) on specific sites; not everywhere is identical in what latitude is allowed regarding subjects such as opinion based or list style answers.

Check out these helpful links for basic principles of asking better questions and obtaining more helpful answers, in general; you'll still want to lurk on your chosen site and familiarize yourself with their practices:

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