Where can I ask more general technical questions?
April 28, 2016 8:27 AM   Subscribe

Is there a site like Stack Overflow which allows for more open-ended questions? Kind of a technical version of AskMeFi? Bonus points if it's focused on web development.

Stack Overflow is a great resource, but they mercilessly delete any question that doesn't have a specific, technical answer. You can't ask questions like:
  • "What tool would you recommend for X?"
  • "I'm trying to solve problem Y; what general approach should I be taking?"
  • "I keep painting myself into corner Z in the course of projects; do you have any workflow strategies for avoiding that?"
  • "I'm trying to decide between tool A and tool B; what differences should I be aware of?"
I totally understand why it's like that, and it's absolutely the correct policy, given the nature of that site.

But I often need to ask those more open-ended questions, and I don't know where to do that. I've occasionally asked them here on AskMeFi – and although this is a pretty technically savvy community, it's not specifically a technical site. And so questions about more specific tools or scenarios aren't likely to get helpful answers.

And if my question is about a specific tool or technology, then I look for a forum or mailing list for that tool. But sometimes my question isn't about a specific tool: it might be a question about how to structure my CSS to avoid a certain maintainability problem down the road, or how to design a workflow that allows me to collaborate effectively and painlessly with my designer, given the parameters we're working within.

So: is there a Q&A site that's more lenient about open-ended questions than Stack Overflow, but more explicitly technical than AskMeFi?

posted by escape from the potato planet to Computers & Internet (4 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
I agree that there's often a need for that kind of information and it cannot be fulfilled on Stack Overflow for the reason you stated. There are probably some subreddits where you can ask questions like that.
posted by OCDan at 8:43 AM on April 28, 2016 [1 favorite]

Have you considered programmers.SE, which is for "conceptual questions about software development"? It's a lot more open-ended, and AFAICT covers architecture, tool choices, and workflows.
posted by daveliepmann at 9:07 AM on April 28, 2016 [2 favorites]

Stack Overflow was the lead site for the Stack Exchange which now has 160 Q&A sites. Last time I asked a question on SO, it was removed with the usual dismissive remark, but also with a referral to another site. Don't remember which one, but maybe programmers.stackexchange.com. it looks more like what you want.
posted by SemiSalt at 2:27 PM on April 28, 2016

You might get some good responses from Ask Hacker News
posted by edgybelle27 at 9:15 PM on July 8, 2016

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