For example, a post saying, 'I have found X method useful, here is how you can duplicate it.' Would this be more on topic, less on topic or as on topic as 'I have seen people use X method, how can I recreate it' kinds of posts?

To take a real world example, would a post saying ‘I have figured out a way to make durable battery straps - here is how’ be more or less encouraged than a post saying ‘My battery straps keep breaking - how can I fix this’?

It’s a subtle difference, but this would open up the Stack Exchange for posts that are tutorials or studies instead of question.

What do you think?

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    $\begingroup$ can you change your question so the meta-question is better framed? I see what you're getting at, but it's hard to answer because I can't see someone making a generic post "Hey, guys, check out how I looped!" But I think it's extremely on topic to say "How does one loop?" and then we'll get canonical answers about tips and techniques. $\endgroup$ Apr 16, 2020 at 3:07
  • $\begingroup$ @KennSebesta I’ll try to make it clearer now. $\endgroup$ Apr 16, 2020 at 9:51

1 Answer 1


Taking your real world example, that post ‘I have figured out a way to do X’ is totally acceptable on the site as a answer.

You're encouraged to self answer your questions even if you knew the answer before asking as mentioned here.

So your Q&A would look like:

Q: My battery straps keep breaking, how can I fix it?

A: In order to fix it you should do X and Y.

Bare in mind that if you got your answer from a website, you should cite the relevant content and also cite the source.

In relation to studies, it's fine to mention a study on a answer:

The best way to do X is Y, explained by study Z that mentions (relevant content)

Questions like:

Is there a document / study that talks about X?

are generally off-topic because we expect the users to do prior research before asking any question and a question should be based on actual issues you face as mentioned in the blog post Good Subjective, Bad Subjective that I quote:

Great subjective questions tend to have long, not short, answers. The best subjective questions inspire your peers to share their actual experiences, not just post a mindless one-liner or cartoon in hopes of being rewarded with upvotes for being merely “first.” Sharing an experience takes at least one paragraph; ideally several paragraphs. If I’m asking about how to bake cookies, don’t give me a list of grocery items: milk. butter. vanilla. eggs. There is virtually nothing I can learn from a short, static list of grocery items that make up a recipe. Instead, tell me what happened the last time you made cookies from that recipe! Share your detailed experiences, so that we all might learn from them.

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    $\begingroup$ Excellent answer, that makes complete sense. I haven’t seen any posts written in such a way yet, but I think it’s important to lay out what the posting culture will be before the Stack Exchange goes public. $\endgroup$ Apr 16, 2020 at 10:13

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