There seems to be more than a few posts about how to integrate serverfault.com with stackoverflow.com. Why does this problem exist? Why not just have one universal site?

Here are the benefits:

  • All questions can be posted in one place
  • All questions can be searched in one place
  • User reputation is consistent

Every new topic can be a new tag. Then, tags that are not interesting to you can be filtered out. Maybe we can also invent "tag buckets" which can filter out a group of tags (eg a Java developer may want to mask out all PHP-related questions).

Big picture: expand this one universal site to include topics like child care, health, travel, books, humor, ponies (yes..ponies), etc (see also https://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/806/stackoverflow-com). This could be the best forum on the Internet.

Please if you think this a good idea vote this topic up so it can get some attention. If it's not a good idea, please give some reasons so everyone can be on the same page.


Because StackOverflow came first with a very defined guideline as far as what was appropriate content.

Serverfault also has a very specific subject matter that appeals to a whole different type of audience.

SuperUser has a very broad appeal that can appeal to numerous.

Also, trying to incorporate everything into one site is just asking for a big flaming pile of poo that nobody will be able to decipher (i.e. Yahoo! Answers).

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  • Well said. Each site caters to a specific audience with a smaller minority of people with skills that cross all three. – Tracy Probst Jul 21 '09 at 16:06

Can't say I'd like for there to be one site.

I'm generally interested in development. That means I skim through all the posts on SO, even on tags that I haven't marked myself as interested in.

Change SO to a single forum for everything and I wouldn't be able to do that any more.

Yes, everything currently on SO could be tagged "development" and I could just be interested in that tag... but then where's the point?

Likewise reputation tells you something about someone's record (I wouldn't like to say "ability") in the somewhat-broad-but-not-too-broad topic of development - or sys admin stuff for Server Fault. Reputation would mean virtually nothing on a "universal" SO.

It's an idea worth thinking about - and I'm going to ponder some more why my instinctive reaction is quite such a firm "no" - but I'm generally pleased with having 4 sites. (I don't tend to actually go to SF, and I'm not keeping up with every question on SU either, btw.)

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  • Rep is definitely not a mark of ability as it is activity. I know for a fact I am not 1/7 the developer you are (if we were to compare rep). That should be more like 1/10 or 1/20. – TheTXI Jul 16 '09 at 16:34

imo. Having separate sites for separate topics is a good thing. It defines a certain environment both to what kind of people visit the sites, and what kind of behavior and questions that is accepted.

With no well defined barriers as to what the purpose is, sites such as stackoverflow can quickly turn into usenet or yahoo q/a.

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