I've noticed that do to the high volume of activity on the site it appears as though only questions that were asked or answered in the last ten minutes are appearing on the main page of the site, meaning if you asked the question 15 minutes ago it won't appear on the main page anymore until it gets some sort of interaction. Fifteen minutes isn't that long of a time when you think about it, and I believe it may lessen the chance or your question being noticed. Is there anyway you could ease the firehouse approach so that not everyone is being sprayed by the full stream?

I know there is a hack, that one can do to display only certain tags, by simply requesting multiple tags in a URL. Is there any way you can implement this hack, so that it is no longer a hack which only a few know about, and so that it's more elegant?

I love the way that you can add "Interesting Tags" and "Ignore Tags", and then it fades or highlights these results, I thought the easiest way to expose this aesthetically was maybe to take it one step further. by making it if I click on the "Interesting Tags" title, it actually filters the questions view to display only questions related to my tags, and then if I click it again it toggles back to the current behavior.

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    This is so obvious that I almost suspect that someone who matters doesn't want this feature. By the way, I almost didn't upvote because you can't spell "there".
    – Svante
    Commented Aug 27, 2009 at 0:52
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    I've looked at the greasemonkey scripts to do this and they don't work.... Commented Oct 15, 2009 at 1:02
  • @Svante: True. But never assume malevolence (or conspiracy, for that matter) in cases which simple human ignorance can explain. :) They probably happened not to think of it. Then again, it's been here for 4 months already with no reaction... Commented Nov 25, 2009 at 8:58
  • I think this is the same as: meta.stackexchange.com/questions/11563/… Commented Jun 21, 2010 at 17:18
  • See this link. Commented Oct 13, 2010 at 16:22

7 Answers 7


It would be a good addition to "Show only Interesting tags" with the current "Hide Ignored Tags" feature in the user prefs.

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    Agreed. This/these should be checkbox(es) on the main page as well, however.
    – Ether
    Commented Aug 15, 2009 at 17:55

The reason this cannot ever really be viable is mainly due to caching.

If you take a look at how Interesting/Ignored tags are currently implemented, it is actually a very interesting illusion.

Every time you refresh, you are getting the same exact page as everyone else. You get a list of questions, and that is pretty much it. All of the interesting/ignored functions are cleverly hidden in Javascript/CSS.

On each refresh, the Javascript goes through and marks tags interesting/ignored, and then CSS properly styles them as such. This is why you will notice it actually takes about a half a second for the styling to show up after you refresh, because Javascript has to figure out which questions are interesting, and which are ignored.

Because the StackOverflow homepage is pretty much static, there is not a high bandwidth cost, as the page only needs to be created every so often, and then cached in between. This reduces the server load to a minimal amount, as the only thing it has to do to create the page is find out your current reputation/badges, and display it. (It probably also checks for an envelope notification)

If you've noticed, this means that no matter what, you are going to only get about 30 questions on the home page. Then, when you ignore certain tags, you are going to subtract from that number. This means that if you ignored enough tags, you wouldn't have anything at all on the home page. This severely hinders the viability of this option.

In order to make this ability viable, StackOverflow would have to create a custom home page for every user using the tags they have specified. This is much more work than the current home page set up, as it requires far more work.

But you can do this through search!. Yes, you can. And that is an easy way to get around this problem, it you would like to live in the search part of the site. However, I have tried this an inevitably, I return to the home page. On the home page I see more questions and they in a smaller format.

So, bottom line: Caching prevents a truly customizable home page.


There is a checkbox for hiding questions with your ignored tags in your profile. Also, setting your Ignored and Interested tags in your profile makes it permanent, no hacks required.

  • However, this even hides questions that have both an interesting tag and an uninteresting one, which sounds less desirable.
    – Ether
    Commented Sep 12, 2009 at 23:03
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    Sure, I'll add the 15,000 tags which are NOT my interested tags manually to my ignored tags list just so I can hide everything except those tags I am interested in. That'll work real well. Commented Jan 22, 2010 at 9:47

I wrote a simple bookmarklet to do this here (well, I wrote it to quickly hide "Ignored" tag questions)

SO/Only Interesting

Only shows questions with interesting tags


Make a bookmark, change the URL to the javascript: code. It wont apply to every page, you'll need to click it for each page.

If you want to make it more permanent, you can paste the above code (minus the javascript: part) into a new Greasemonkey script


I really need this cuz I really can only answer a few topics and I would love for just those things to come up when I searching to answer. However, if i do the javascript hack, it doesn't just give me the "Interesting Tags" it hides the others so instead of 50 questions on a page I get 1-3 and I have to keep going and going and going to browse a bunch of questions.

  • I agree, and have a similar problem, but this isn't an answer to the question. Commented Jun 14, 2012 at 14:15

As I can see, now it can be done by going to stackexchange main page (do not worry, you will see stackoverflow's questions at the end), on the right (Tag sets), click on "Interesting Tags" (or any other category you would like to), and you will get a list of those questions!

You will be able to sort the question with interesting tags by activity, newest and no answers. Best of all: you can get an rss feed at the bottom of the page of the given order of questions. Plus you can subscribe to get e-mail notifications about the news in the given tags at the "Email Updates" form with desired time interval (15 mins, 3 hours or daily).

You may also specify different tag sets which work just like the same as "Interesting Tags".

I hope this helped.

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    This only helps if there is only one tag you want to see. Commented Jun 14, 2012 at 14:14

Great suggestion! This was ultimately implemented, but only for Stack Overflow at the moment due to the huge ~2.5k questions per day volume.


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