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Alternative question:
When multiple known cases will match answer for your question, what's the best way to pack them in the question title (or body)?

Additionally to this question itself, an example of multiple question titles matching same expected answer:

Q1: How to enable GPU scaling?
Q2: How to reduce display blurriness under different resolutions?
Q3: How to disable video driver image stretch in old programs?

A: Use this registry setting: HKLM/***

Exact words may also depend on depth of user understanding of the problem.
Tags sometimes can solve this, but that's mostly not intended use also due to their limited count. Seen opinions that placing/formulating via slash is a bad style.

Choosing just one way of all possible rephrases will probably lead to both duplicate questions and rare solutions not found by search or missed by user while checking SO Linked questions.

Is it good approach to solve this using slash/parentheses in the question itself?

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  • 2
    / is fine or use or. Feb 12, 2023 at 16:25
  • I don't think that tag-synonyms is appropriate in this question. Once said that, while this question is on-topic here and interesting, I think that in this case might be appropriate to post something similar in Writing or in ther per-site meta.
    – Rubén
    Feb 12, 2023 at 16:33
  • Re "How to ... ?": Asking questions in English (QUASM) Feb 12, 2023 at 17:19
  • @Rubén this is about alternative phrases too, not simply about language synonyms. Disable vs enable emphasizes two options when very probably both are correct. And there is most exact "switch" instead of both, but probably least used.
    – halt9k
    Feb 12, 2023 at 19:47
  • I'm not sure that the changes done in rev. 4 are really helping to clarify the question considering the answer that I had posted. Such details might be helpful on a question posted in Meta Super User where apparently belongs the hypothetical specific question.
    – Rubén
    Feb 12, 2023 at 20:59
  • @Ruben Hope they do state the problem in as clear as possible way, and your solution to write all alternative options in the question body itself is still valid. It is clearly not only about Superuser, just an example to show that experienced users will name same thing differently.
    – halt9k
    Feb 12, 2023 at 21:05
  • It looks that the example comes from a real question that you already posted in Super User -> How to disable/enable GPU/display/blurry resolution scaling/stretch on Windows one year ago. If your interest is focused in questions that belong to Super User, the best is to ask in Meta Super User. If you interest is general, the best is to use a general example or to use at least two examples corresponding to two different sites. If they belong to different categories, i.e. Technology and Culture & Recreation, better.
    – Rubén
    Feb 12, 2023 at 21:10

2 Answers 2

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I don't think that synomyms / analogue words or equivalent phrases should be commonly used together in titles as that affect readability, instead use the different ways to say something in the question body.

Before start using "innovative writing styles", first learn the site culture and workings. Some communities are more open than others about authors creativity. The Stack Exchange behavior guidelines disallow including salutations, greatings and other chitchat on posts, so better to assure that the community will find value on having the same meaning wrote in multiple forms.

Spend some time in the site to get familiar with the most commonly words used by the local SME. In your question title whenever be possible use the most commonly words that you learned from the local SME, just in case that you find hard to make your title unique use a synomyn or analogue word but be careful as the SME might think at first sight that the question could be a duplicate. In such case the best way to prevent that the question be closed as duplicate is to explain why the question with the similar title didn't meet your needs.

In order to get advice from writing experts I suggest you post a question about writing in Writing SE.

In order to get a more specific advice, post a question in the corresponding per site meta as there you will find the users who better know the workings of that site and what migth works best for a specific question.

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  • For example, when on superuser you try to choose between "GPU resolution" vs "blurry screen", this won't help: advanced users know about GPU, while simpler users will ask google just about blurry screen. That's like a phrase for each knowledge depth required. But fair answer with clean solution proposed.
    – halt9k
    Feb 12, 2023 at 20:09
  • @halt9k I just added recommendations for follow-up questions. Regarding the case mentioned in the comment, better to ask in Meta Super User.
    – Rubén
    Feb 12, 2023 at 20:12
  • By the way, when posting a question when you are looking that someone else answer it you should write in such way that SME found it interesting, by the other hand, when you write an answer that you want that everybody find, you might write a brief part using advanded language / domain terms and a detailed explanation using the simplest / layman's terms.
    – Rubén
    Feb 12, 2023 at 20:18
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I think this is slightly like the problem of 'blindly' optimising for search engines - by stuffing a question title or post body with all the possible alternate versions of the question so people can find it, you're compromising on readability.

Choosing just one way of all possible rephrases will probably lead to both duplicate questions and rare solutions not found by search or missed by user while checking SO Linked questions.

Or you can ask the question your way and if there's a duplicate target, it links the two together. Comments also turn up in linked questions and least on meta, we occasionally use it as a way to get them there.

While we do hope questions are useful for future readers, questions are about the problems the OP has now in their perspective. Answers are primarily directed at the level of skill OP has and their specific circumstances

Having one or more alternate phrasing just gets... messy.

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