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12:10 AM
Tim +32,946 (!)
@MichaelHomer How do you know the exact number?
I think I got about 3000 but I don't see any way to check.
I know how to subtract one number from another
So forearmed with one...
You could also use SEDE
12:27 AM
That is not something that I am proud of
I can't use it to solve hunger problem
I imagine you could spin 65,000 points as a positive on a CV
They're not worth anything but it's still a lot of them
I think that will backfire
The reputation is nothing unless > 100k, for freebies from unix.SE.
freebies are of little use
I have an emacs.se t shirt, but I haven't even worn it once
I have emacs.se stickers, but I haven't stuck it anywhere
I am officially no. 14 at unix.stackexchange.com/…
sorry for surpassing you @MichaelHomer
12:42 AM
oh no
Proportionate mention is not guaranteed to backfire
congrats Tim
I mean it shouldn't be the main claim, of course, but it can be used as part of demonstrating properties they may want. That's where the spin arrives
@Jesse_b thanks. how much do you gain? I guess not much. I am sorry about that
@Tim like 400, no big deal I don't deserve it :p
When the reputation for posting questions was the same as answering questions, and then was cut half quite some years ago, I wasn't sad either
12:49 AM
If anyone should get some sort of credit for asking questions it should be you
1 hour later…
2:08 AM
Wow, congratulations, Tim! Almost double the fake internet points!
strike that - over double!
It was 104%, which has to be a record
2:24 AM
I was personally amused by this sentence in the blog post: "We saw no decrease in question quality." ... which means the goal was really "We saw a significant increase in the number of people who started and posted a question.". Combined with the increased fake internet points, this can only tie back to "how we can reduce friction between people"
not that I see any connection; just trying to see a thread through the post
anyway, hope everyone "take(s) the responsibility reverently"
I wonder if Gilles ever created SE2.0
2 hours later…
4:21 AM
@FaheemMitha vi ~/doc/notes/notename.txt. Or if you want to get fancy, write it in markdown. or latex. vi ~/doc/notes/notename.md (vim has nice syntax highlighting for .md and .tex files). You can use sub-directories to organise notes into categories. and/or by date. And you can write trivial wrapper scripts/functions to create new notes with title, date, etc nicely formatted at the top of the file before launching vi. Use git or hg or something for version control.
text is best.
3 hours later…
7:00 AM
@FaheemMitha cat >>notes.txt ?
@cas Thank you for the suggestion. The advantage of a software system is that it could be more flexible. I.e. multiple tags. Which you can't get by organizing in directories.
Have you ever tried Org mode?
@Kusalananda Old school, apparently.
@FaheemMitha You said something about Neanderthals...
@ilkkachu Apparently some people just have nothing better to do with their time.
@Kusalananda I did.
Maybe tomorrow they'll decide to decorate the entire network with pink and yellow stripes?
Handel can be very cheery at times. Consider, for example "For Unto Us a Child is Born".
I wonder if anyone has that set as their alarm?
Actually, it might be a bit startling to wake up to.
Damn, I was waiting for the far distant day when I would finally attain 25k on this site. SE robbed me of that.
This might sound like a weird question, but has anyone ever had any success getting a business (or businesses) to use PGP/GPG? Like a bank or broker, for example? And is GPG usable on Windows these days?
7:22 AM
It would be weird if Windows were where they decided to make it usable
@MichaelHomer Windows users are people too.
Or are you suggesting it's not usable on the free Unix-like systems people like use?
It's never been usable anywhere
And there's virtually always a better way now anyway, though persuading the bank to use those is probably also a problem
@MichaelHomer What better way is that?
@MichaelHomer gpg on the command line seems usable to me. But I rarely use it, because it takes two to tango.
I suppose if I was a Debian Developer, for example, I might use it more.
This seems like a reasonable list of alternatives for common uses
For actual email replacement the e2e messengers are probably the best option currently
@MichaelHomer You mean like Telegram?
7:34 AM
That is one of them
Key exchange is still a problem and in some ways PGP handles that well, except for the major unfixable flaws in the protocol that have made it unusable
I still like the concept but keyservers just aren't workable any more
8:05 AM
@MichaelHomer the GPG project spend quite a lot of time on Gpg4Win, amazingly enough
8:22 AM
@StephenKitt Do you have any thoughts on this encryption thing?
@FaheemMitha you can add plain tags or whatever you want to a plain text file. just structure it kind of like an email message (or a debian Packages file entry) - a header section with fields, a blank line, and then free-form text. e.g "Title: title", "Tags: tag1,tag2,tag3" or "Date: 2019-11-14". the headers can be easily grepped, or parsed with perl or awk or whatever.
@cas Thank you for the suggestions. Is this what you do?
@FaheemMitha org mode? that's for emacs, right? nope.
@cas Yes, Org Mode is an Emacs package.
Widely used and popular in Emacs circles, I believe. It's also plain text, of course.
yeah, i use text files with that format for lots of things. it's simple and easy to work with (even json is overkill for most of the things i want to do).
8:26 AM
@cas Ok. I actually use TeX heavily all over the place, all the time. But it's not necessary for everything. E.g. it doesn't really buy one much when writing TODO lists.
Of course, TeX is technically text too. Sometimes not very readable text, though.
I use plain text files (actually plain text with some markdown-like formatting for bold & italic) to generate latex files. useful when I have a list of things that I want to format consistently in latex. write the .txt files, then write a perl script to process them all and concatenate them into a .tex file (generating ToC and hyperref links at the same time), then create a PDF or whatever from that.
and one of the nice things about it is that because it's all plain text I can embed .tex into it wherever I like. e.g. for embedded tables or figures.
(the bold and italic markdown is just a minor convenience - it's easier to type ** and * than textbf{} and emph{}....and trivial for a perl script to convert from basic md to tex. I originally used pandoc for that, but it was overkill for my needs. and worse, pandoc's md -> latex conversion is crap: gold in, garbage out)
8:57 AM
@cas LuaTeX is also an option for generating LaTeX files.
i thought luatex was for embedding lua code into .tex files?
anyway, while lua seems like an OK language, i don't have any burning need to learn it. also, perl is almost idea for working with text files, and I already have over 20 years of experience writing perl code.
@cas Yes, it is. But the Lua code can process TeX. Well, can call TeX on strings, to be precise.
It depends on what you want to do. For what I want to do, LuaTeX works well. Though I'm not a fan of Lua as a language. Way too small.
One winds up having to do lots of DIY stuff, or search for things in often obscure third party libraries. Just a pain.
1 hour later…
10:11 AM
Mods, what do you think of using “reject and edit” as a way to short-circuit the voting process on edits which introduce errors, e.g. here, here (minor, admittedly), or here (subsequently “accepted and edited” by another user)?
I tend to favour the community vote but I’m seeing lots of unfortunate approvals in edit voting :-(.
10:24 AM
@StephenKitt Here's another edit along those lines that makes a post worse.
@EliahKagan yes, that particular user is a repeat offender, but we don’t have nice edit education tools aside from comments left under posts, or reject messages (but that only works if the edit is effectively rejected), or dedicated chatrooms (which often involves mod intervention).
@EliahKagan And another, though less severe. This one uses code formatting excessively, but perhaps I should've reviewed it as Edit rather than Reject.
@StephenKitt If some of the editor's bad edit suggestions were accepted, I think the editor should be pingable in comments on posts where they were. Whether or not it would be a appropriate to do so would probably depend on context, though. (And I would not suggest doing that on all of them, but maybe just one.)
2 hours later…
12:42 PM
@StephenKitt Why not? I mean, why wouldn't you do that if you feel the edit is bad?
@terdon well, that’s my question. If you don’t have any reason not to, then I’ll do so ;-).
1:12 PM
@StephenKitt Well, since you ask, I assume you see some problem I don't :) What made you think about this?
doing "improve edit" or "reject and edit" overrides the normal "voting" system
@terdon a bunch of edits by one specific user, whom I’d noticed before. Many of them are good, but some of them go too far (copy editing code, or introducing grammar problems of their own).
I’ve always though it best to leave the voting systems as-is, for the reason ilkkachu gives just above.
But I probably need to recalibrate my “reject and edit” trigger...
1:26 PM
Thanks to all the users that are actually spending time to improve the site.
I like being nobody and low key which matches my contribution to the site(s), but my reputation has and will be a problem to that
@Tim You may always use reputation points for bounties.
If you just want to "spend" them, I mean.
And there are users who do that: they have significant levels of contribution to the site, which has earned them a lot of reputation points, but they give them all away in bonuses.
That is not a bad idea :)
Maybe I will
I ran across an idea here from Jon Ericson♦ and so wrote a SEDE query that computes it
@StephenKitt The general mentality for SE sites is if you have a privilege, you are trusted to use it. And you already have the rep to edit posts without being reviewed. Therefore, there is no reason for you to think twice about it: if the edit is something you would have edited again to correct had you seen it in the wild (in a post instead of in the queue) then go ahead and use reject & edit.
1:33 PM
The idea is to show how much voting (rep) you've redistributed back out for how much you've received
Don't think of it as circumventing the voting system: you have full edit privileges, so you already "circumvent" that system every time you edit. This is no different.
and ditto what terdon said; I don't see a problem rejecting edits that make things worse. That's how I learned!
(plus feedback in chat, which I happened to overlap the reviewers enough)
My posts have been on the sites long, and experienced those days when the traffic per post was high. If those who have targeted me had similar experiences, I believe they would earned much more reputations
@JeffSchaller It's how we all learned. But Stephen is worried that because his choosing to "reject and edit" will immediately reject the edit with a single vote, that means he's circumventing the voting system.
@JeffSchaller weird choice of words there, "currency". It's not like voting costs anything in rep (well, except downvotes, but it's minor compared to gained upvotes)
what was the rep limit for being able to approve/reject edits? is it the same as being able to edit yourself?
1:37 PM
@terdon and I agree with you, that as reviewer #8, he's in a good spot to make a "final" decision ('final' also being a poor word choice)
@ilkkachu 2k
@terdon good point, thanks. And rejection doesn’t carry any penalty either, apart from the counters AFAIK, so...
@StephenKitt I think there's a warning of some sort if you receive enough rejected edits
The guilty of being a "billionaire", and the sadness of being the opposite actually
@JeffSchaller ah, that would make sense (and be a good thing too IMO).
because, if it is, then one could just always choose to unilaterally accept/reject the edit, in a sense. (that leaves the reviewers name visible as the last editor, but does anyone care about that)
1:38 PM
@JeffSchaller wow I need to vote more!
A: Is there a penalty for one's edit suggestion being rejected?

Jeff AtwoodNo, but repeated edit suggestion rejections from multiple users will cause your edit suggestion rights to be suspended for (n) days, where n is currently 7. Note that after a recent change, automatic rejections due to edit conflicts are ignored and won't affect the suggested edit ban mechanism. ...

@StephenKitt help guide site quality! :)
Any proposal of posts that I can give bounty to?
@JeffSchaller ah yes I loved that one at the time!
@Tim did any of your own questions get an answer that made a big difference for you? that'd be easiest, I think
1:45 PM
Jeff plastering his photo all over the site...
@JeffSchaller You caught me. I don't know when I will have some time to revisit the posts and think whether I have got satisfying answers.
@Tim I was just wondering if any stuck out in your mind. Another reason would be questions with outdated answers
It is not abandoning, because I still revisit some of them from time to time
Just trying to help you solve your problem :)
I am not actually a billionaire
So I don't actually have the sweet problem, but something else to worry about
That is why I don't spend as much time on Linux and the site as before
1:51 PM
with 171,310 questions, it's a lot to try to filter through; you could go through your favorite tags as another filter
If any of you spot some questions that are worth of bounty, just let me know
As long as my guilty last :)
@Tim Just another idea -- post a Meta question with the offer, and people can post "Answers" with links to the questions that they think are worthy
(warning, my first ideas are often not good)
@JeffSchaller Who has 171k questions?
@FaheemMitha the site as a whole
@StephenKitt U&L?
1:54 PM
@StephenKitt @JeffSchaller Ah, ok.
..minus the 5 that are already bountied
Heh, @Tim doubled his reputation with the rep recalc yesterday! :)
mmm, minus questions asked in the past 2 days
Tim, you could earn more badges! promotor, investor, altruit, and benefactor
1:57 PM
The only one of my site reps that was really affected by this misguided change was TeX. Where my rep roughly doubled. Ask me if I care.
On all sites, the number of questions I've asked is not significant.
I got to 10k on MSE which is kinda cool. I can now see deleted MSE posts!
I got to 10k on MSE which is kinda awful. I can now see deleted MSE posts!
I am of two minds...
I was just going to add ... if you wanted to see them
I mean to write: "on all other sites", not " on all sites".
2:27 PM
@JeffSchaller It is not a bad idea. It would be better that someone else post it, and let whoever propose posts and whoever in guilty mood and in leisure time award the bounty
Regarding the motivation of reverting the reputation points of Qs back to the old days, I guess SE/SO the company senses that questions generate more traffic than answers, and that is what their business model needs
This query seems very computational intensive
@terdon MSE is math.se?
@Tim Probably Meta.StackExchange.com
@Tim Meta Stack Exchange
or jinx, depending
@Tim one benefit to your posting it would that you would get the notification
2:36 PM
@JeffSchaller that’s something I’d like to have — be able to subscribe to a question, and get notified in the same way as the question author
I don't want to be notified. I am satisfied with visiting them when I feel guilty and have the time to
There was an SO user that had edited their profile with a bounty offer message; I forget who
@Tim No, sorry, it's Meta SE: meta.stackexchange.com
@terdon man, welcome to 120 seconds ago! ;)
2:38 PM
Stupid time machine always breaking.
@StephenKitt my best suggestion is to star it, then sort your Favorites tab by Activity
@JeffSchaller exactly what I do already ;-)
@Tim you went from 31702 to 64648 on Unix & Linux.
something I've meant to learn more about are chat "conversations" -- I wonder if they'd be useful here (if we tagged a "bounty" conversation that would have any future benefit)
@JeffSchaller like a thread on Slack?
2:40 PM
@StephenKitt man, then not only have I blown today's good idea, I've used up tomorrow's, too
@StephenKitt I'm aware of, but unfamiliar with Slack
@JeffSchaller I always completely forget about my starred questions until months later
@terdon Thanks. Sorry for challenging your overall ranking :)
@Tim ha! That's absolutely fine :)
Apparently a "bookmarked conversation" has a beginning and an end :(
@JeffSchaller as opposed to?
2:43 PM
@Jesse_b stars
well, we now have a rather worthless conversation created by me here: chat.stackexchange.com/rooms/info/26/dev-chat?tab=conversations
@JeffSchaller Yeah but you can click on the link of one of those comments and go to a more full conversation
or off to the right "context of this conversation"
Yeah, I was hoping (imagining? hallucinating?) that it would extract the comments & replies that were all related to that topic into something more useful.
instead, it seems to grab everything, and requires an end-point
2:58 PM
@JeffSchaller I see you got around to asking a question on TeX SE.
So, I get access to Site Analytics now. Which I've been informed is basically useless. Unless I've confused it with something else.
@FaheemMitha You have been informed correctly.
@JeffSchaller Not sure what you are using the minipage for.
Are you trying to stop it breaking across pages? Or something else?
3:17 PM
All the activity in the page analytics is visibly cyclical. Depending on US time zones, perhaps?
@FaheemMitha yes, complete with MWE code, thanks to your hint! and now I need to work on question #2. Yes, about minipages -- trying to keep 3 elements together on a page somehow.
3:58 PM
@JeffSchaller Yes, TeX likes to split things if it can.
Though note that there are a number of different ways to box things.
minipage is just one of them.
4:27 PM
Just got a Gilles/Stéphane collab answer on one of my questions!
4:42 PM
Matching fields from passwd with grep indeed seems hard. Five answers with regex solutions to that question and all had the same one or two errors (the other one's a bit marginal though)
4:56 PM
@ilkkachu hey, who you callin' marginal?
There's a comment on a deleted answer from the OP that said "no, I can't use awk or perf (perl?). They might be better solutions, but I can only use grep or egrep with regular expressions."
@JeffSchaller ... that other corner-case, the one about the gecos field starting with a number
@JeffSchaller oh :/ too bad for them. I didn't see that comment.
the only "pleasure" in seeing deleted answers (it was there until I deleted the answer, anyway)
(which is why I also repeated a comment under the Q)
"I need to print the whole line for this to work, but the 4th field value should be highlighted." -- Highlighting just that one field makes it even harder. Wonder if that's even possible with just egrep
I didn't look at the deleted answer, but that comment there seems much stricter than what the Q says, or what you wrote in comments under it :)
5:15 PM
asking good questions is hard :)
@JeffSchaller that’s why I haven’t asked any ;-)
I note it takes one million rep points to get Kusalananda’s Q&A right
@StephenKitt no it isn't ;)
5:36 PM
@StephenKitt I've also heard it can be hard to find the question button.
@FaheemMitha I’ve found it on meta ;-)
I think some people just want to make sure there's been no "division by zero" coding errors
@JeffSchaller that will henceforth be my excuse
For (all your) information, I made the mistake of look at Meta just now and saw Why is SE removing links and community ads about legal issues? in which it says "Stack Exchange staff will actively remove links to a legal fund campaign from user profiles as well as community ads surrounding Monica's situation & reinstatement", just in case you're involved.
@StephenKitt you're welcome ;)
@JeffSchaller batten down the hatches!
5:40 PM
@StephenKitt the hatches are hangin' on by a thread, my friend
@StephenKitt I'm informed that meta is basically Arkham Asylum right now.
@FaheemMitha our own meta, not MSE
@StephenKitt Oh, that meta.
@StephenKitt (344000+589000)/200 days = 12.77 years
@Kusalananda that’s an expensive answer!
6:08 PM
Why was my comment deleted on that parallel question? :(
6:20 PM
@Jesse_b You mean the one saying " Comments are temporary and you should assume they will all eventually be deleted." ;-)
Cleaned up. Your comment about parallel was answered by the user (sort of). They are not interested in the functionality, only the implementation.
@Kusalananda a bit less than that since the +15 for accepted answers doesn't count on that 200
@ilkkachu Yeah, I know, but I didn't want to sit down counting accepted answers for those two :-) It makes for a good number, that's all.
@Kusalananda Eh, no need to count, just call it a dozen a day ;)
Some people here sure have a lot of energy. Maybe you guys eat a lot of spinach?
6:38 PM
@Kusalananda fair enough
7:10 PM
@JeffSchaller that's interesting! I'm at a comfortable 1.57 ratio. Looks like there are only two people with a higher rep and a higher ratio...and you're one of them. :)
7:22 PM
@JeffSchaller: Not sure if you just wanted that user to add it to their answer or generally wondering but the grep [s]tring will not find the grep process itself in the ps list
It eliminates the need to grep -v grep
7:38 PM
@MichaelHomer I've just done a bunch of reading on that site. Very interesting. Is that project something you're involved in?
@Jesse_b the former; I know what it does
@JeffSchaller =) I figured, In fact I think we have had a conversation about it in the past too
@Jesse_b although as present in that answer, if there is a file called "program" in the directory the script is running in, then the grep process will be in the list. And then the kill -9 will hopefully fail, unless the PID has already been reused. :)
Why people use ps | grep | awk instead of just pgrep is really a puzzler.
could also just ps | awk '/[p]rogram/'
well if you are using awk anyway just to get the pid it would be shorter to not use grep
oh, right, sorry, I missed the context
7:58 PM
@Wildcard No, I was looking for a different article with a similar title and found that one instead
@Wildcard It's used because people teaching shell programming at universities reuse old material.
pkill has only been around for 20 years or so.
The pkill/pgrep in OpenBSD was inherited from NetBSD. They wrote it in 2002. I believe that the version you'll find in Linux is derived from one of these, but an early version (there's usually no -q (quiet) option for pgrep on Linux).
Hmm... there's not even a -q in NetBSD's version. That must be an OpenBSD invention (it is, added in 2012). It's handy.
I think it's also that people learn one command to do one particular task, and then another command to do another task, without learning that the tools in question can do other things too (let alone knowing how to use them for that)
@Kusalananda Interesting. I recall when I wanted to run some command with a one-second timeout. My mentor (a sysadmin with 20+ years of experience) was just in the middle of saying that that particular command didn't have a timeout option...when I found (using apropos) the timeout command and used it. It was too new for him to have learned it. :)
8:11 PM
everyone knows grep can find a matching line, and awk {print $2} is also a common-ish pattern (since cut -f2 doesn't work for columnated data). And they know how to connect the commands with a pipe, so no need to go further
@Wildcard Yeah, from coreutils. If you're not frequenting a site like U&L, you're likely to not know a lot of nifty little tools like that.
isn't that the sort of toolbox thinking that's supposed to be what the Unix command line is all about??
@ilkkachu There is also a conflict between the plain statement of the UNIX philosophy and the realities of dealing with certain tools. For example, you have to use the sorting options built into ls if you want the output sorted. Piping to sort is crazy.
Hah, anyone else getting an error loading the main site?
> Description: An exception occurred while processing your request. Additionally, another exception occurred while executing the custom error page for the first exception. The request has been terminated.
@Kusalananda That's why in my own shell training, I stress how to find documentation and tools, more than just covering some particular pre-selected set of tools.
8:13 PM
It errored so hard it failed to error
@ilkkachu It is, but all tools comes with caveats that are often ignored, such as caring about $IFS, locale, allowed characters in filenames, etc.
Server Error in '/' Application.
Runtime Error
Description: An exception occurred while processing your request. Additionally, another exception occurred while executing the custom error page for the first exception. The request has been terminated.
Why am I seeing my chat messages twice when I first post them?
@Wildcard Me too.
Ah, now it has cleared up.
(now has)
@Kusalananda testing
@Wildcard Bleep
8:22 PM
For me the duplicate entry blinks into existence but then disappears.
Seems okay now, maybe.
I have no more of those.
I think they restarted the server. I got logged out.
@Jesse_b main site comes up now.
Does anyone know why SE decided to make this significant change that nobody asked for?
The chat thing was also happening to me yesterday during the rep recount
There are plenty of feature requests people ask for, which are not implemented.
8:23 PM
@FaheemMitha That's a question with an opinion baked into it.
@Kusalananda You mean, that some people asked for it?
@FaheemMitha They have been very publically trying to me SO/SE a "more welcoming place"
@FaheemMitha I mean it sounds as one has to take sides to answer it.
If so, they aren't exactly visible. I've literally never seen or heard of anyone suggesting this feature.
@Kusalananda the opinion was added at fry time. ;)
8:25 PM
@Kusalananda I don't follow. Like I said, it wasn't visibly being asked for.
@FaheemMitha They did research, they saw benefits, they rolled it out.
@FaheemMitha here's where the reverse feature was suggested and accepted: meta.stackexchange.com/q/42769/307622
@Kusalananda Well, maybe they did. But this research doesn't seem to have included the actual users of the site.
@FaheemMitha I believe it did, to a limited degree.
Hold on, I'm sure I read that in the announcement.
@Wildcard Was there once a time when question upvotes were worth the same as answer upvotes?
8:28 PM
@FaheemMitha yes, before that question I just linked to. :)
@FaheemMitha here's an ancient question where it was asked for: meta.stackexchange.com/q/96090/307622
@Wildcard I guess that was before I started using the site regularly. Because I don't remember it.
@Wildcard Regardless, it wasn't exactly a popular move. As in, people weren't exactly crying out for it.
@FaheemMitha It's behind the links in the last part (after "We're doing more") in the announcement: stackoverflow.blog/2019/11/13/…
@FaheemMitha that's an understatement. Here is the recent discussion (started, you might notice, by an ex-mod—and NOT by the people proposing the change). meta.stackexchange.com/q/337843/307622
Anyway, it seems like they want more questions. That's one way to try to get them. Though I don't see why people would ask more questions just because they are getting IIP. People ask questions when they want to know the answer. Or maybe they're just bored and don't want to watch TV. More likely the former.
@Wildcard Yes, I saw that already.
My point was just that there should be some sort of consensus about these changes. Not some people get an idea in their heads, and then implement it.
I.e. don't fix something if it isn't broken.
@Kusalananda I can't see those linked articles saying anything about the rep change? If they have UI improvements or such that make it easier to post better questions, then I can't see how anyone could oppose that. But that's different from how much rep the votes on Qs are worth
@FaheemMitha the consensus part is what many in meta.SE seem to wish, yes.
8:36 PM
@FaheemMitha I'm reminded of the "brainstorming" part of this comic: existentialcomics.com/comic/89
@ilkkachu it's affirmative action for question-askers.
@ilkkachu That's the only reasonable way to run a site like this.
@FaheemMitha Nice to say, but the Director of Public Q&A isn't participating on Meta.
@Wildcard Director of Public Q&A?
@Wildcard That's a fairly weird comic, but makes a change from xkcd all the time.
@FaheemMitha yes, that's her job title: meta.stackexchange.com/users/139284/sara-chipps
@Wildcard it does seem somewhat in line with the "we must make the place more welcoming to new users asking questions!" idea
8:41 PM
@Wildcard Except the reward doesn't actually have any value.
> We can look back on this decision with the benefit of hindsight. This decision may have been the right call then with the information we had at the time, but we have seen the effects it has had on our community. We reward people who give answers at a higher rate than people that ask questions.
The "effects it has had on our community" assumes that Stack Overflow would have been just as successful had this decision NOT been implemented, and that the only effect was to make the place less welcoming for question askers.
@Wildcard Oh, right. The person who posted "We’re Rewarding the Question Askers".
@FaheemMitha and who fired Monica, as near as I can tell.
@Wildcard Oh. How can you tell?
@FaheemMitha because nobody else has doubled down about it so hard as she has. meta.stackexchange.com/q/334248/307622
8:44 PM
@Wildcard I see. So, inference from context?
Actually, that's standard for how people behave in a bureaucracy. Never admit that you were wrong.
@FaheemMitha she uses "we" almost exclusively throughout her blog posts and decision statements. I'm pretty sure it's code for "I".
But I've got a feeling I've said that here already.
I spent a long time in universities, and practically everyone in the bureaucracies behaved like that.
@Wildcard Presumably there are other people involved. It's not a one person organization.
@FaheemMitha ¯_(ツ)_/¯
Network effects are interesting things.
This reminds me a bit of how Airbnb behaves. In both cases, they behave like they own the shop. In actual fact, all they own are a few domain names, and web pages. Which would be mostly empty if it wasn't for the people who populate them.
In the case of Airbnb, it's the hosts. In the case of SE, it's the user communities.
@FaheemMitha there's a rather important distinction that SE has all the content which has been contributed, and Airbnb has absolutely nothing if people stop hosting new guests.
8:52 PM
@Wildcard That's certainly a valid point. But content does need to be maintained. And people would have new questions. An inactive site is ultimately a dead site.
Anyway, it will probably come as no surprise to anyone here to learn that Airbnb hosts constantly complain about Airbnb management.
@FaheemMitha yeah, I think there is no way to have a smooth running operation when you have one management unit (no matter how large) directly managing an unlimited number of people.
The Soviet Union tried that too.
The key word being "directly." If you manage a small number of people directly who each are executives with others reporting to them, it can work.
The large group being comprised of smaller groups, rather than individuals.
N:1 ratio doesn't work well.
@Wildcard Well, Airbnb probably isn't a smoothly running operation. But I guess there are enough people who have property to rent and who are desperate for cash that it's still running, for now. As someone leaves, others enter.
@FaheemMitha right, I'm speaking more generally than Airbnb.
I'm not sure how familiar you are with it. But I happen to be an Airbnb host. For now, anyway. I'm not sure how long I'm going to stay with it.
It's increasingly seeming like more trouble than it is worth.
@Wildcard I understand.
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