21

How do we move past rand's suspension? It's simple, really. Ladies and gentlemen, it's time we make room for the new king of Puzzling.SE: Bailey M. Please, hold your applause. [End unofficial block.] Guys, this sucks. We all know it sucks. Rand posted a lot of sweet math puzzles (which I cannot for the life of me solve nor imitate in any real fashion) as ...


20

I think it's important to comment first and give the authors some time to fix their answers before deleting them. Last night I went through one particularly problematic question and posted such a comment on several of the answers; by morning most of them had been improved significantly. If you see a post without explanation, leave a comment asking them to ...


16

I like spoiler blocks. I have a large monitor, I enjoy solving most puzzles instead of simply looking at the answers, and spoiler blocks greatly facilitate my use of the site. I can read through questions without constantly having to avert my eyes from answers (often in boldface) only inches away. Single spoiler blocks or multiple structured blocks with ...


16

Only the user who asked a question can accept an answer. A "community-accepted" feature is not currently planned. If you believe the accepted answer is low quality, simply downvote it like you would any other answer.


15

Losing the top user on a site is, unfortunately, not unprecedented. Whether because of death or life circumstances (I'm pleased to see I'm no longer the top user on Hermeneutics) or for reasons unknown, people stop contributing to a site they've previously been active in. While we can't know for sure how these events set a site back, we can say that sites ...


15

That is certainly allowable, but it's not an ideal solution. If there is a picture or diagram you want to include as part of your answer, then definitely insert it as an image, but I would encourage you to type as much as possible of it as text. Doing so helps the answer to be more searchable, and most of the time will be much easier to read. It also lets ...


15

Most such answers are by newcomers. Silent downvoting is a great way to make them feel unwanted. So I would suggest a polite comment and perhaps deletion after a few days.


14

I think an appropriate concept here is "contra proferentem". Essentially, where there is ambiguity this counts against the author, not the reader. If you want a unique, "correct" answer, then you must construct your problems such that they each have only one valid answer. This is a significant component of problem setting. There is very little in the world ...


14

In my opinion, answering only a small part of a large puzzle should not be a "partial answer", particularly if these answers are unconfirmed. What counts as a "small part" will of course vary from puzzle to puzzle, but here are some guidelines I recommend (and use myself), to decide when -- or whether -- to answer: (1) A partial answer should clearly ...


13

It's just not a good answer. I'd be surprised by anyone finding the answer inappropriate or vulgar. If you look at any number of other accepted answers for riddles, you'll see that each line in the riddle is separately addressed by the best answers. Typically, each line of a riddle is meant to be another clue, rather than several lines being used to make up ...


12

We must define what is on-topic in a clear unambiguous fashion. I haven't been around all that long, however every discussion I've seen about what's on-topic has been very ambiguous and I'm still not remotely clear about what the story is. Indeed, the consensus in meta is often internally inconsistent. I argue that any definition of quality will need the ...


12

Titles What happened in Area 51: In Area 51, the example questions have no bodies, so they must be entirely self-contained only in the title. Most puzzles and riddles are impossible to be crammed to a single title. At least for me, I discarded some questions simply because I found no way to reduce them to only a title. In order to cram the most content in ...


10

I blame the questions. If “solve this riddle” is a valid question, then those are decent answers. These puzzles are officially off-topic, but pretty much nobody appears to be enforcing this.


10

Assuming we want explanations (and I believe we do), this is probably the only way it's going to get enforced. Downvoting works very well when there's a culture of it, but not so well if you're the only one doing it. While I am generally against deleting content that at least attempts to be helpful, I think it may be best in the short term. However, I'd ...


10

No. Partial answers need love too. Those that build toward an answer are perfectly acceptable on most stacks and are useful in their own right. Intentionally deleting answers that are partly correct doesn't achieve anything other than making it harder for others to come up with a fuller, more correct answer.


9

I think that answers should break their spoiler into multiple labelled parts if possible, like my answers here and here. That way, readers can control what they're spoiled on. Someone who just wants a nudge to help them along can look at just an early part and then work the rest out for themselves. I object to the format given by the OP (Josh Caswell) ...


9

I think what we really need is to edit the questions we have to make them better and ultimately closing the ones that are not up to the right standard. New users need to see lots of examples of good questions . Also, there seems to be a culture of putting guesses as answers. This should be discouraged and people should use the comments for that. Also, a ...


9

I think that puzzles with strong mathematical content are perfectly on topic. If you look at the puzzle tag on math.stackexchange.com I think many of those would make great questions here. See for example https://math.stackexchange.com/questions/205953/how-do-you-find-the-center-of-a-circle-with-a-pencil-and-a-book https://math.stackexchange.com/questions/...


8

This answer should not have been marked as offensive. Mentioning Adolf Hitler is not offensive in itself (if it was, a lot of history teachers would necessarily be offensive and History SE wouldn't be allowed to exist). Nor is it offensive to say that he was "very harsh" to Jews. It's an understatement, sure, but the words "very harsh" come from the ...


8

I believe that in most cases we should comment and down-vote rather than simply delete. The presence of a publicly visible answer with many down-votes and comments about it's redundancy seems a better discouragement then a deleted answer. Notes: If the duplicate answer came within about a minute of the one it duplicates (two different users solved the ...


8

Because other users said it "Looks OK". That flag was put through the low quality queue. As you can see from the history (which you can access with review priviliges, IIRC), four users reviewed it. Since there was no conclusive choice one way or the other, the system marked it as "disputed" - not "declined", which would mean ...


7

One reason for this is the way the 'hotness' scores are calculated. Questions with high 'hotness' can reach the SE home page and the multi-collider-thingy, which gives them a big boost in visitors and rep. The hotness formula gives a big advantage to questions with plenty of answers, specifically MIN(AnswerCount, 10); see How do the "arbitrary hotness ...


7

A proposal to vote on: Perhaps we could ban the questions that ask "what is the answer to this riddle/problem" but keep questions that ask "how is this riddle solved". For example, difficult maths questions are often on topic on maths stackexchange, but this is because the answers don't just state the solution, but how the solution is obtained. Therefore ...


7

To quote @JoeZ. "I'm sorry; this is a bad question given the answer you've accepted as correct". As the community cannot change the accepted answer, the question is as much of the issue as the answer and both deserve similar voting consideration.


7

You can of course click a picture of a handmade diagram to explain the answer well. But you need to type the plain text. You cannot post the picture of a plain text because: some users might not be able to understand your handwriting. the webpage will take time to load and it will create annoyance for other users. (half jokingly) save trees?


6

Yes, we should enforce explanations in answers. With downvotes and a comment linking to a faq meta post first, then deletion if the user refuses to fix the problem. Ultimately, though, to convey that we're serious about quality, deletion will need to occur, because votes are generally more a measure of popularity than quality. Answers without explanations ...


6

$\color{black}{\textsf{I hope I’m not}}$ letting the cat out of the bag, $\color{black}{\textsf{but you actually can}}$ display some $\color{black}{\textsf{inline}}$ text in a spoiler block $\color{black}{\textsf{while hiding the rest of it.}}$. It works on any site that supports MathJax.  \text{this} gives you $\text{this}$; \textsf{this} gives you $\...


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