September 16, 2008
I'm in no way trying to conflate this with the meaning of my last blog post, but after a six month gestation, we just gave birth to a public website.
Of course, I'm making a sly little joke here about community, but I really believe in this stuff. Stack Overflow is, as much as I could make it, an effort of collective programmer community.
Here's the original vision statement for Stack Overflow from back in April:
So what is stackoverflow?
From day one, my blog has been about putting helpful information out into the world. I never had any particular aspirations for this blog to become what it is today; I'm humbled and gratified by its amazing success. It has quite literally changed my life. Blogs are fantastic resources, but as much as I might encourage my fellow programmers to blog, not everyone has the time or inclination to start a blog. There's far too much great programming information trapped in forums, buried in online help, or hidden away in books that nobody buys any more. We'd like to unlock all that. Let's create something that makes it easy to participate, and put it online in a form that is trivially easy to find.
Are you familiar with the movie pitch formula?
Stackoverflow is sort of like the anti-experts-exchange (minus the nausea-inducing sleaze and quasi-legal search engine gaming) meets wikipedia meets programming reddit. It is by programmers, for programmers, with the ultimate intent of collectively increasing the sum total of good programming knowledge in the world. No matter what programming language you use, or what operating system you call home. Better programming is our goal.
Although reaction has generally been positive, there has been a bit of backlash. Some have promoted the idea that Stack Overflow will only contribute to the increasing dumbenation of the world's developers. I think this is, in a word, horsecrap. I liked Joel's response to this in podcast 21 (mp3):
And it is true that we are all, as developers, hopelessly incompetent. The goal of a site like Stack Overflow is to somehow share the correct knowledge wherever it may be as it is scattered throughout the universe, and to cause that to be voted up and to be spread amongst us. There's this big universe of dumb programmers, and I'm one of them, and we all have a little bit of knowledge. I may know how to do this thing in VB6 which may be useful to somebody one day who's trying to maintain some ridiculously old piece of crap code. We all have these little tiny pieces of information and if we can just contribute a little bit, that information gets amplified, and maybe a thousand other dumb developers will benefit from my one little piece of good information.
And here's my response, from the same podcast episode, to all those who turn up their noses at community sites like this, preferring the input of "experts":
The idea that you have all these experts waiting in the wings to do stuff is an illusion in my experience. There's really just a bunch of amateurs muddling along trying to do things together. The people that are truly experts are too busy to even help, right? And if the experts are too busy to help, what difference does it really make if there are experts at all. Because the whole point of this endeavor is helping other developers, and whether you're an expert or not, if you have no time to help, you're not really contributing to the solution.
Stack Overflow is by no means done. We're still technically in public beta. But I believe what we have -- the confluence of wiki, discussion, blog, and reddit/digg ranking systems -- is a fair representation of our original vision for Stack Overflow.
It's a place where a busy programmer can invest a few minutes with as little friction as possible, and get something tangible from the community in return.
But who cares what I think; my opinion holds no particular weight. I'm just a member. This is our site. You tell me: how dumb are we?
Posted by Jeff Atwood
I must say that I hate openid, their login and register method are pretty annoying. I guess I will change my mind once I start frequenting other website besides stackoverflow that uses openid.
When neither my yahoo or flickr ids worked, I got a claimId. It didn't work either.
All three of these id's take me to the kitten fixing a tv page.
It's a great site, I'll be happy when I can log in.
I've been addicted to (stack|crack) overflow for 45 day, and lovin' each one or them.
Nice way to exclude 99.8% of web users with this cumbersome and useless OpenID huh!
My openID isn't working. Lame.
Nice going! I think a blog post of what is behind the site and what it took to create would be a good read :)
See, there's a problem with Podcast responses.
That problem is that *nobody fucking listens to Podcasts*.
To use OpenID with yahoo just put yahoo.com in the OpenID box, log into Yahoo, and then it's done.
Then just edit your profile on Stack Overflow to put a name in instead of the ugly URL and Bob's your uncle.
I can imagine preferring something else to OpenID but actually 'hating' it is a bit desperate.
Adding to the chorus: I hate OpenID. I like the idea of SSO. I think OpenID is a horrible attempt, has been since the beginning and has shown no signs of getting better. I actually think that using OpenID *hurts* the SSO cause, because it will taint peoples' impressions of other solutions. Believe it or not, I actually do think that having different credentials for each of thousands of sites is better than OpenID. Please, please, please drop the requirement of using OpenID. Leave it as an option if you must, though I'd personally prefer to never have to see that icon on my screen...
If you're really desperate to get a solution off of Experts Exchange, simply open the site and open up the view source page in whatever browser you are using. Search down until you hit the responses. They're actually embedded in the website itself. If someone were ambitious enough, they could actually write a script to grab that information (it's not stealing, it's being served up to your computer legitimately).
However, it is tedious looking through all those html tags.
Well, it is somewhat disappointing that I have to seemingly signup for another site (uservoice.com) if I want to point out that the signup form is broken (especially after I see a number of other people posting about this, and being declined) ...
Otherwise, you're missing a key word in your post: unique.
Forget about everything else you said, if nothing else, it's a unique way to get an answer, and I think it'll work.
(Joel's post - http://www.joelonsoftware.com/items/2008/09/15.html - should probably be required reading ...)
Good job Jeff, I look forward to playing with it.
If only we can devote 30 mins a week for contibuting, think of it as fraction of the time you devote to write a blog post.
congrats to *us*
Just with a 5 minute glance, I see tons of interesting questions on the site. I love it. Here's hoping that your site buries Experts Exchange in the search engines, and pops up some useful information when Googling for answers. Time will tell on that -- IMO you're really going to want to get a metric of how well your site's answers perform in Google against those crappy newsgroup aggregation sites.
I've been a user for all of a few hours now, but it's strangely addicitve refreshing the question list and seeing if I can answer any of them. Usually by the time I pick one, google around a bit then come back, it's been answered 897 times over with answers much better than mine :-)
Good job guys!
Hey Now Jeff,
Wow Great post!
Coding Horror Fan,
Congratulations :) It's really active, just as Dan said above, by the time I want to answer something, I already see loads of good replies :)
Jeff, I just tried Stack Overflow and already I'm hooked!
Great layout and intuitive functionality: more power to you!
The insightful ability to edit you answers (or even questions) is the single most amazing thing that answers the point you say critics are raising.
This means users have the opportunity to make the content as correct and as close to best practices as possible, leaving a great 'reference' for 'posterity'.
Stack Overflow, IMO, is a great idea, which is being nicely executed.
Keep up the good work and we'll all (or most) be very grateful.
I just don't understand the need for an OpenID, but maybe it's just me.
Your Venn diagram doesn't show Twitter, IRC, or email. ;)
I've got no complaints with OpenID, except that more sites don't use it.
About 2/3 times I post a question, I get multiple _fantastic_ responses quickly. About 1/3 times I get only lame early responses and then my question never gets voted up or apparently looked at again by a human being. Overall, it's been very helpful. Definitely worth the price of admission (setting up an openID account.)
I think and hope it will work. It looks great and feels great! I'm a total amateur so I'll stick around there for learning and hopefully I'll get to the point where I can also start giving answers!
Now if only you can figure out how to get ExpertsExchange out of my google search results...
I'm gonna go sign up for your site now... perhaps you shall see more of me there.
I like it. It's great. Looking forward to using it every week for the next 10 years.
Really enjoying the site Jeff. Would be nice to be able to provide specific feedback without a separate logon though...
Ironically, for me at least, I think Stack Overflow is a victim of its own initial success. I tried subscribing to the RSS feed yesterday and there was just too much activity for me to try and keep up with. By the end of the day I had removed it from my feed.
I also found myself a bit reluctant to answer questions that had already been answered somewhat correctly. Yeah, I could elaborate or clarify an answer, but it seemed a small, incremental value add.
In one case, I found a questions with three 0-point answers. Two of them wrong and one correct. I tried to vote the correct one up, but alas, I didn't have enough rep.
One potential improvements I can think of would be topic-specific or language-specific RSS feeds to filter down the volume.
And I'm with Bruno: supporting OpenID as _a_ choice is nice, but as _the_ authentication choice seems a bit limiting. Is it so hard to follow what 90% of the web does (email/password)? Is OpenID really any more secure? In the end, I had to sign up for an OpenID using - you guessed it - my email address and a password. So I jumped through a bunch of hoops to essentially prove to you the same info I would have with a simpler authentication scheme.
One potential improvements I can think of would be topic-specific or language-specific RSS feeds to filter down the volume.
Already exists: there are feeds for every tag, though we have not implemented tag combination feeds yet (I will try to get to that today).
etc, etc, etc.
Jeff I looked around on the site and it's fantastic! I'm going to annoy ahem I mean ask people questions as soon as I can. Of course I'll also use my 'infinite' expertise to answer questions as well :-)
I think there is kind of strange dynamic developing on stackoverflow. Peoples are answering questions, any questions, all questions. Questions that should have been ditched/voted down in many cases. I think the reason behind that is that peoples try to find an opportunity to increase their reputation at all cost until at least a minimum level is reached. Thus choosing the easy/dumb ones for a starter.
The side effect is the noise and the quality of the questions. I mean there are questions out there that, on any typical forum, would have been flamed down fast and hard because the person asking did not (1) do his homework (2) check around for an answer (3) provide sufficient details for even the beginning of an answer to be elaborate.
I think that once the initial hype/buzz slows down a bit we will see less and less of those.
I think overall this is a great concept that ought to work.
Re: Yahoo: I'm also getting failed. I can see that I am logged into Yahoo, and I get a let me in button from Yahoo, but then stackoverflow says that I failed to authenticate, returning Failed
I'm looking forward to using the site. However, I too wish it didn't require OpenID.
I tried it out, but it won't even allow the user name I use here (periods not allowed in user names). Oh well.
For those complaining about having to create another set of credentials for Uservoice, you can use the uservoice site anonymously with almost all of the functionality you get if you're signed in. I used it anonymously for about a week at the beginning.
Mind if I share a dirty little secret with you? Yahoo is a *terrible* OpenID provider. Their UI is awful for this.
Still, it should work. I'm logging in like crazy under every context I can think of with https://me.yahoo.com/eggsmclaren and that is a bone stock Yahoo account I created (minus enabling OpenID).
May I suggest that the accepted answer does get the check but is not moved to the top?
That way you have the most helpful answer (as voted by community) at the top, but the accepted answer is still shown prominently.
Giving the accepted answer too much promotion tends to cause the answers to lean toward the specific bias of the asker.
Just an idea.
I truly love the site, you have plenty of reason to be proud of what you've achieved. congratulations!
I do have to agree that openid is terrible. I think it fixes a problem that doesn't exist. Why not just have a simple registration where you can register an email address and a password (we can handle keeping passwords in sync ourselves).
You wrote a brilliant post a while ago about automatically creating the account and letting the users 'fill in the gaps' (eg username, password) later as they decide the site is worth the effort. It would have been great if you'd done that here.
The Uservoice feedback mechanism doesn't share authentication with stackoverflow.
IRONICALLY BECAUSE THEY DO NOT SUPPORT OPENID!
Just sayin'. :) I did vote that request up on http://uservoice.uservoice.com , but who knows when they roll out new features. I haven't seen a thing change there in months.
Best luck with everything. So far I find it very helpful.
I posted a question and a couple answers yesterday. Went back today and searched for my name and it returned no results.
Besides this, thus far, I do like the structure of the new site! Good job!
i've looked into the site yesterday (after Joel's post) and i think it's great in MANY MANY ways, but not just for programmers.
I'd love to have the software installed in the company i work for, to have QA for CMM, sales, human resources, etc. For some reason wikis don't seem to work, but perhaps the reputation/votes will create e better incentive.
Are you planing to open source this?
The site is great! I'm really surprised. I thought it may not be work but I think it's doing great and this point system is a very nice way to encourage people to answer and participate.
I've one complain. OpenID. It sucks!
A better solution would be to support OpenID for those who love and provide a Register facility for those who don't mind registering on StackOverflow, like me.
Congrats Jeff and thanks.
Yahoo works for me too. Although I'm not going to share my account details for you to try ;-)
Alternatively you can use your Google login via the Blogger Open-ID.
Sorry! We have encountered an error that prevents us from fulfilling your request. Things should return back to normal soon, so please try your request again in a few minutes.
If Yahoo OpenID sucks so bad then maybe it shouldn't be in the list of example providers. Out of the example list it was the only one where I already had an account, and was the most recognizable. It worked for me Monday morning, once, and has not worked since then, from home or work. Now I will need to sign up again at another place just to get an OpenID that might work. Maybe myopenid.com is trusted and will work better.
Indeed, my three biggest problems with the site all center around openid.
1) I get auto-logged out all the time. I don't know if this is an openid/blogger problem or what, but it is extremely annoying.
2) I can't transfer my stackoverflow account to a different openid provider if that would offer fewer auto-logouts
3) I have to go through a multistep process every time (so login, openid login, then finally I get to do what I want).
The openid naziism is annoying, imo.
Ummm... am I the only one who sees the Kurt Vonnegut reference in the middle of that Venn diagram?
How can I find my stuff (my questions, answers, what I upvote)?
I would like to be notified of what others write.
The site is good. Keep up the good work.
Congratualtions. I have used it to ask a couple of questions and helped others with some feedback. I like the high quality.
However just a caution that the site could suck your time if you're hooked to collecting badgets, earning reputation, voting up and down on questions and answers stuff... etc.
Just curious, are you planning to make the site's code open source?
Jeff, I get the same failure with email@example.com as I do with my own yahoo account.
Dunno if it's an IE 7 problem or what.
I registered last night and helped answer a few questions. So far, so good. I think you guys did a great job.
I like the site so far. The downside is that it's a bit overwhelming. I don't know how well it's going to work when I need to find a specific answer.
The only real bug I've found is after I login using my Yahoo OpenID and then fill out my profile information and Save it, the profile doesn't stay saved. My profile information keeps getting lost.
Also on a personal note Jeff, you seem a little hostile to your users about this Yahoo OpenID thing. It may not be your fault but it would behoove you to do all you can to help the users that are having problems.
I'd like to add to the call for fixing the OpenID please.
If I go to sourceforge's login page and type blog.billpg.me.uk into the box on the right, I'm taken to blogger's login page. (So I know my OpenId works this far.)
If I do the same on the stackoverflow login, I'm told
The remote name could not be resolved: 'blog.billpg.me.uk'
(Try it out everyone!)
Hope this can be sorted. Many thanks.
The new website looks good, congratulations !
Now ... to start a few trolls about PHP ... mwahahahahaa.
Badges ? Very nice idea !
It works for videogames ... :)
The openID thing worked okay on signing up...but I really don't see the need for it.
I would prefer just a simple signup like every other site.
OpenID for authentication (and not as a second-class method).
Image-light, structure-rich, CSS for layout.
Atom for syndication (and not as a second-class method).
Actually-free license terms (CC BY-SA, avoiding the non-free NC and ND).
You've hit a whole lot of high notes even before I begin using the site. Thanks! :-)
It's a place where a busy programmer can invest a few minutes...
Yeah, right! CrackOverflow is my new favorite lurking place on the internet.
Nice article on the launch in infoQ:
Stack Overflow, a web site for programming questionsanswers, has been made public while still in beta. The site offers programmers the opportunity to ask questions and receive answers from fellow coders for free, and intends to become the right source of answers for any programming question.
Flickr openid no worky? Do I need to go sign up with another openid provider? I have been banging my head against a wall trying to get this to work.
Besides the immense informational potential, I must admit StackOverflow is FUN. Now instead of lethargic Digg browsing I can peruse questions; some of them I can answer and some of them I never thought to ask but feel smarter after having read them and others' answers.
What's uservoice got at this point that stackoverflow doesn't?
I agree. The belongs on uservoice police belong on the top annoyances of SO.com list as well. Ugh.
I was an initial skeptic, but after a few weeks of using the site am a true believer now. The vote system will generally sink the weak and elevate the strong.
Overall, it is a great resource and you and the team have a done a great job.
I think the site works great. I had to create an OpenID. No problem.
Great work Jeff, this ROCKS. The site is so active that the question I asked was way down the list, just after asking.
I like this site really much. Great high quality answers to all sorts of questions. I wanted to register, but then OPENID.
Can't stand the idea of an ID for the internet. This is the reason I only read the answers without having the chance to participate.
Are you going to implement an alternative Login? Please let us know!
So Jeff, when will you start giving out stackoverlow stickers? :D
I was very excited about this site... until I saw the OpenID login. I can't use it. I'm not going to sign up to a service I wont use just to log in to your site (I'm sure you understand that). Please please please give us another way to use the site!
Dude, Jeff. Not to be rude or anything, but several of us have spoken on the issue with Yahoo. I've posted on uservoice and I'll tell you here with the rest of these guys who are having problems, I can't log in with my Yahoo OpenId. I've used it for other sites. Heck, I got in on the private beta once, but when I've tried from my work machine (actually going to use it for what it was designed for; not test it!) I can't use my OpenId to authenticate.
Sorry, man. I haven't tried lately but I get a URI error with the prettiness of .NET's yellow and white error page.
I wish you'd let us in on why you chose UserVoice as a bug/feature tracker. It's downright perplexing.
It is starting to bug me. Tickets just disappear (deleted? lost? what???), now editing abilities of old posts, periodic email repeats itself, and it will let you type in a new ticket even if you have no votes left...but then tell you slow down. Grrr...I cannot be bothered to beta there site too :P
Jeff, your Venn's diagram for 4 sets is incorrect. You can check Venn's original construction for 4 sets at the Wikipedia's entry for Venn's diagrams, as well as Edwards' re-constructions of the Venn's diagrams (prettier than Venn's original ones for more than 3 sets, in my opinion)
I think jon's comment above hits on the key problem with yahoo openid's not working on Stack Overflow. I think it's mostly a usability issue, I've posted an answer on the site, and made a comment on the uservoice site (though it has a very short comment size restriction) with some helpful pointers:
Most importantly, the Stack Overflow login control prompts you with the wrong partial identifier for yahoo accounts. However, the example listed below the login control, https://me.yahoo.com/yourname, is accurate.
Also, when activating openid for your yahoo account yahoo will default to some gibberish identifier, you have to select a more sensible identifier manually.
Nice site there. Though I wish there was some way to organize and create hierarchy to the tags.
By the way, the topic I clicked on was only 11 seconds old when I hit the link, so maybe I got tossed to a different server that didn't know about the content or maybe I ran into some other sync error?
I must admit that trying to use OpenID for the first time - it sucks big time.
I have an account with wordpress.com but don't have a blog there, I just use it for stats, I host my own wordpress. After logging in at stackoverflow with wordpress.com as openid provider I get redirected to some ugly wordpress page saying You need to sign in to wordpress.com to complete this process.. If I go to wordpress.com i see that (as far as they are concerned) I'm logged in. So, OpenID does not help you guys....
Unfortunately it's impossible for me to log in to Stack Overflow from work, where it would probably be the most use to me. We're behind a proxy server, which combined with our faily slow Internet connections means that OpenID simply doesn't work reliably. And of course every time I log in to the site from home I get logged out from work.
Also, I added OpenID support to my own website, but if I log in directly using myOpenID it doesn't recognise me as the same person. So I have to use the site anonymously from work, which is a PITA.
OpenID is working well as an anti-goof CAPTCHA...[...], you might
not be a great source of information on a tech QA site.
Wonderful. Finally I met a person who I can ask to improve my own inferior solutions (because Stackoverflow is presumably out of bounds). Well, quick:
-How do you compute transcendental functions in arbitrary-length
math with, let's say, more than 1000 bits precision in binary format ? You know, ln, exp, sin, cos, tan ? Please explain in
-Is there a problem with the power function x^y and if yes, what exactly is/are the problem(s) ?
-You compute exp(x)-1 which is common in physics and engineering. Which problem occurs and how do you solve it if you don't have an
handy routine (like in IEEE754r) ?
I am convinced that these petty questions are not a problem to a man who obviously belongs to mankinds elite.
Yes, exactly: Jeff's Venn diagram is incorrect for it doesn't represent all the possible intersections between the 4 sets, only some of them.
It couldn't show apps that lie in the intersection of Wiki and Forum but have nothing to do with Blog or Reddit, nor the ones at the intersection of Blog and Reddit which are not even remotely like Wikis or Forums.
Jeff: if you don't like the models shown in the Wikipedia example, projecting this image of yours onto a Sphere would render it correct (the 4 circles would over the North Pole and intersect again at the South Pole, showing all the possible connections at the cost of a little redundancy).
hi jeff, didn't know where to post it, but i would like to point out that one of the most active users, the user aku, has ussr's hammer and sickle in his icon, which is a little bit offensive for some people, like using nazi's swastika as icon would be offensive for jews.
The incompleteness of the n=4 Venn diagram (yes, I noticed too, heh) is a non-issue if the emphasis is solely on the region of complete intersection, though. If Jeff wants to make a point of mapping, graphically, the intersection of Digg and Blogs that intersects ineither/i Wiki nor Forum factors, then he's got a problem, but otherwise we're just overnerding things.
And if we're igonna/i overnerd this sucker, I'm wanting to see at least one site/application that fits each possible region of intersection.
(Or a compelling argument for the impossibility of pure-opposites intersections, which would justify Jeff's diagram as functionally complete after all. In other words, establish why you ican't/i have a Digg/Blog/No-Wiki/No-Forum site or a Wiki/Forum/No-Digg/No-Blog site.)
By the way Jeff: when posting an answer here using Firefox 3, I'm always getting a message saying in an effort to curb malicious comment posting by abusive users... before being able to post again.
If I go back to the original page, I can see my comment has been posted. If I wait and post again, I get a double post.
Somehow, Firefox is sending TWICE the post to your site. I investigated on the net if anyone else was having the same problem, the closest I could get was this:
Are you using an IMG with an empty SRC tag?
Nice to finally see the site after hearing so much about it. I had some interesting answers to my question that had no right answer. You did a nice job on the UI. I missed a couple of features because I wasn't expecting it to be that user-friendly. This will definitely be a site I check regularly for some food for thought, and a site on which to bounce off my periodic software neurosis.
The only problem I've seen is that I think I saw one of the answers to my question disappear. Can users retract their answers?
Kudos on the site, Jeff. I've found it to be quite nice.
I vote for OpenID too, its great. (admiteddly I do not use Yahoo's implementation so I might be using it right)(Hint: go to myopenid, they've done a lot right).
What I cannot understand though, is all the people asking for a 'throwaway' login id. Isn't OpenID exactly this? You don't need a single openid account for all sites you know, you can have as many as you like. So go to myopenid, create your throwaway userid/password (or certificate, or phone callback) there and use it to login to stackoverflow.
I reckon they're afraid they'll realise they can reuse the same id on other openid sites and then start liking it. Won't that be a terrible thing!
I hope it will kill ExpertSexchange.com
To use OpenID with yahoo just put yahoo.com in the OpenID box, log into Yahoo, and then it's done.
This worked, thanks.
Sorry, but openid is a tall cold glass of fail as far as I'm concerned. If that's the only way to properly get to grips with stack overflow then I won't be getting to grips with stack overflow.
For me, bang slap in the middle of your nicely-shaded venn diagram is where IRC sits ;)
But it's a fun site, I've had a go on it this evening, but I can't see it replacing IRC for usefulness.
Plus the server appears to be dying on its poor overworked arse at the moment ;)
It's pretty fun to go through all the unanswered questions, but as a few people here have said, they get answered pretty quickly, usually while you are in the middle of trying to answer them. Since there are so many people eager to earn reputation, questions very quickly lose their 'unanswered' status, even if none of the replies really adequately answer the question. I would suggest being able to filter unanswered questions a little more leniently, such that, say, if none of the answers have been upvoted at all, it will still be considered unanswered. I'd suggest filtering by ones that the original poster hasn't marked as The Answer, but it seems like the majority don't ever get that marked.
Maybe if the original poster can check an option that negates its 'answered' status, even if there have been responses, if none of them are appropriate, so questions that genuinely haven't been answered will still be easily found. Sort of like bumping their question, but without having it bubble to the top again. Maybe they could be allowed some small number of times they can perform that action per question, to limit it.
So I'm all for programmer art... hell, I have lots of programmer art.
But you've got to do something about that layout. As it stands, I can't stay to look at the site for more than a few seconds because it's designed so terrible. I see a lot of the comments about that have been shut down immediately with little to no explanation.
Listen, while I hate, hate, hate Expert's Exchange, this site is not going to be the EE killer unless you do a far better job with design.
Tried it, liked it. Found myself answering questions that over-zealous moderators had removed before I could hit submit. Found comments from moderators closing questions they deemed too subjective or off-topic. Trying to force the group, rather than filtering your own view, is fail. Won't be going back for some time.
God, finally! Looks like a good idea, can't wait to test it out next time some language gives me guff.
As for critics, as Jay-Z put it, oh—you're not feeling me? Fine; it cost you nothing—pay me no mind.
If Software Development is a game, then that makes Stack Overflow the new World of Warcraft.
Great site and congratulations.
One suggestion - Please make the site valid against XHTML 1.0 ( Please check with http://validator.w3.org/ )
OpenID works well with me in SO but I am seeing a lot of complaints from others about OpenID. Therefore SO should not rely solely on OpenID for authentication. A regular username/password should also be used. OpenID should be an option but not the only option.
Fine layout. Easy to use. Great idea to edit own answers. Nice gimmick of badges. Search function great. Already enough users to build a broad base.
- Both highest rated answer and accepted answer should be shown.
Some people ask hasty questions and accept answers which are a bad
solution (unsupported hacks etc.).
- philibertperusse has already mentioned it: People are eager to
earn rep and therefore are not inclined to downvote questions.
Idea: Only people who haven't already answered may up- and downvote
a question. If question is upvoted, every answer earns an extra
point, if downvoted, every answer lose a point. So good/bad
questions are marked out, but the very small gain for everyone
stops people from cheating (socketpuppetry for questions and
- The identity is irrevocably lost if you edit anonymously. And I have
something to say you possibly don't want to hear:
It is a solution for a non-existing problem. Joel has already wrote
an article about synchronization platforms like Windows LiveMesh
who wish to fulfill one place for all my files.
OpenID wants to fulfill one identity for the whole web. Guess
what, noone needs both of them.
If you always use the same identity, you can already auto-login
with the browser (and you don't care about security
anyway). If you don't use the same identity, OpenID is wholly
pointless. Please give an alternative. *Please*.
I can't bow down to OpenId yet, but it appears you are after a self-healing/blog/wiki/twitter upgrade/ source of info, which I think is a good concept.
Execution will be rough for a while while those who can/cannot refine the answers gets sorted out, and you separate fluff from that's nice from solid bottom line info.
Congratulations, the page is beautiful and useful.