Proposal: Around the Water Cooler

What do you mean "Water Cooler?" How isn't this already covered by other expert sites, or those questions that fill the cracks between?


1 Answer 1


Define the Water Cooler:

Best-of-breed practices and advice from professionals in all fields.

My flow through the StackOverflow/Exchange network started with SuperUser and ended at Programmers.SE. Moving from SU to SO I found it interesting that you started to have more “give” to the questions, some things weren't cut and dry as “Why isn't my home computer seeing the internet?”

Programmers.SE was created as a “meta-programming” site, and has since been defined by the community as a site to ask non-programming (but programming related) questions (of programmers). This means all the “Why Visual Studio not IntelliJ?” and “Is recursion more efficient here?” questions fit right in. In fact, a good majority of questions have since been migrated from StackOverflow to Programmers.

Sounds great, what's the issue?

The issue is that we are seeing a number of questions on programmers that don't pertain to programmers specifically. Things like “What is your ideal office chair?”, “How do I handle a workaholic?”, and “How do you deal with headaches while working?” have been closed with a firm [off-topic] stamp.

A general business SE site will fill the void the Programmers is filling in regards to SO — general best practices and advice that don't pertain to any particular expert field.

  • 3
    Hmmmm. Downvote + comment = better answers.
    – Josh K
    Apr 5, 2011 at 4:49
  • 5
    And now two downvotes without comments. If I'm missing something I would appreciate the feedback.
    – Josh K
    Apr 11, 2011 at 1:33
  • So would a question that pertains to mostly to programmers but isnt really a programming question belong? I am thinking questions of how to justify asking for a specific position type to management or similar.
    – Chad
    Aug 10, 2011 at 13:22
  • @Chad: Sure, as long as you can abstract it into a general business question.
    – Josh K
    Aug 10, 2011 at 17:09
  • I think a good example is the question about the music in a dentists office. It is more about the office, than the profession though the profession is important to the question I would think that it would be on topic even though the votes lean the other way.
    – Chad
    Aug 10, 2011 at 17:28
  • @Chad: I would agree.
    – Josh K
    Aug 10, 2011 at 19:04

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