Alternatives to StackOverflow?

Discussion in 'iOS Programming' started by patent10021, Mar 5, 2015.

  1. patent10021 macrumors 68020

    patent10021

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2004
    #1
    StackOverFlow in my opinion is not what it's all cracked up to be.

    Are there newer more active help forums that maybe are a bit more mobile centric?

    Thanks
     
  2. ArtOfWarfare macrumors 604

    ArtOfWarfare

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2007
    #2
    In my experience, people who complain about StackOverflow are generally looking to put zero effort into asking questions and would much rather someone else put all the effort into doing the research and programming for them.
     
  3. patent10021 thread starter macrumors 68020

    patent10021

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2004
    #3
    So is that a yes or no? Cause unless you're the owner of SF and want to ask me what I think could be improved then your opinion means jack.
     
  4. *SteveB*, Mar 6, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 6, 2015

    *SteveB* macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2015
    #4
    Judging from your response, I think it's probably your attitude.

    I end up on StackOverflow on an almost daily basis - Google a question, and without fail there will be a StackOverflow answer on the first page of results. If you run in to an issue, it's likely that someone there has dealt with it before, and has kindly taken the time to share their solution.

    I've only asked a question myself a couple of times before, when I was starting out, but I was always amazed that people actually responded and helped me with my issues.

    It's likely that your asking the wrong questions, or not being clear. This might help you out http://stackoverflow.com/help/how-to-ask

    Don't worry about responding because your opinion means jack.
     
  5. ArtOfWarfare, Mar 6, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 6, 2015

    ArtOfWarfare macrumors 604

    ArtOfWarfare

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2007
    #5
    I am not an employee of StackOverflow, but I am a regular. The thing that makes StackOverflow what it is is the people on it, though. I don't think the owners could change it very much if they wanted to - that would require them changing how all the regulars behave.

    If you want to propose changes to how it works, you can do so at meta.stackoverflow.com. Most of the changes proposed there are geared towards changing how beginners behave though, not regulars.

    I can already tell from your two posts, though, that you wouldn't be well received at StackOverflow.

    #1 - You've posted twice on this topic and we still don't know what specific problem you're having. I want to close this topic as being unclear, but unfortunately we're on an ordinary forum which doesn't put value into clarity or quality of content (which is why I spend more time at StackOverflow than any forums...)

    #2 - You just told me that my opinion means jack.

    In helping you, I'm hopeful that you'll see the error of your ways and be a more productive and pleasant member of society.
     
  6. subsonix, Mar 6, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 6, 2015

    subsonix macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2008
    #6
    Yes, this is the greatest value of SO for me as well and also, a stated goal of the site as a pure Q&A site. It does seem that increasingly the most simple questions of that format has already been asked, and thus asking again is unnecessary. Harder questions are either very domain specific, specific to your situation or doesn't fit into the pure Q&A format.

    It's not very good for discussions, in fact it's discouraged by design. If you are new to a subject, you likely don't have the vocabulary to ask the right question yet and may benefit more from a discussion oriented format.

    The OP asked for an alternative to SO geared towards mobile development. Your response was basically that it's his/hers fault for not liking SO, thereby not answering the actual question.
     
  7. ArtOfWarfare macrumors 604

    ArtOfWarfare

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2007
    #7
    I challenged the premise of the question. The OP was saying that SO was flawed and that they wanted an alternative. I explained that the problem with the relationship between the OP and SO wasn't on SO's end.
     
  8. solinari6, Mar 6, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2015

    solinari6 macrumors member

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    Aug 13, 2008
    #8
    I somewhat agree with the OP. StackOverflow is great if your question has already been answered ... I haven't had much luck with any questions I've posted though. They would generally get voted down or ignored. I think the problem is that most of the people who post there are SO technical and crazy smart, that when you are writing your question, you REALLY have to know precisely what it is you are asking. If any part of your question makes it sound like you aren't an expert already, you will receive a verbal beating.

    as an alternative, try reddit. I've had some good luck with http://www.reddit.com/r/swift/ ... there's one for xcode as well.

    Also, don't forget apple has some development forums that can be pretty useful as well.
     
  9. xStep macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2003
    Location:
    Less lost in L.A.
    #9
    I thought your post was insulting and was an accusation of laziness or/and leaching. Nothing in the OP's post deserved such a response. Your response did mean jack because it had zero information regarding the actual request.

    I suspect that you would have responded very differently if the OP had excluded the first line.

    Why the OP is looking for other avenues of discussion does not require questioning or accusations. They certainly are not the first person to find SO less than perfect.

    The request is: Please list any active mobile focused discussion/help forums. Exclude SO and this current forum.

    Sure it is a generic request. Perhaps the OP is into more than just iOS. We don't know and don't need to care. If they want specifically iOS forums than sure, they need to word the request more tightly.
     
  10. xStep macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2003
    Location:
    Less lost in L.A.
    #10
    I'm unaware of such other forums, but I have a limited focus.

    SO is great for quick Q&A and occasionally more in depth discussion. The Apple mailing lists often have discussions that can carry on in length. I don't think any of them are mobile specific though, so you'll see a mix of OS X stuff in the feed. This forum too, can have some lively discussion.

    I rarely ask questions because I find the documentation and search engines very helpful. When those are not helpful it can be because I don't know the domain language that allows for a good search. That can be frustrating but I just keep at it until I figure it out which then leads me to my interest.

    If you have found some alternative sites, please add them to this discussion.
     
  11. patent10021, Mar 6, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 6, 2015

    patent10021 thread starter macrumors 68020

    patent10021

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2004
    #11
    No I haven't posted twice on this topic. I posted a question regarding some code on an app but this is the first time posting re StackOverflow.
     
  12. patent10021 thread starter macrumors 68020

    patent10021

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2004
    #12
    Thanks. That's true there is a lot of down voting there lol However, the down voters there are not merely down voting because of question style. It's obvious there are a lot of people with throw-away accounts just down voting people. That's why a lot of other forums have eliminated down-voting. It serves no purpose. That's also why I now have 2 accounts. One for asking questions and one for helping and assisting people out.

    In MY opinion Stack is not as mobile centric as I'd like it to be. For example I think raywenderlich is miles better than Stack for mobile. I'm looking for even more sources though.
     
  13. ArtOfWarfare, Mar 6, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2015

    ArtOfWarfare macrumors 604

    ArtOfWarfare

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2007
    #13
    #1 - Downvoting costs the downvoter 1 rep.

    #2 - Downvoting requires 125 rep.

    So you can't have a throw-away account just for down voting people. You need to somehow be collecting rep, which means either posting good answers or good questions, to be able to downvote.

    Other websites aren't anywhere near as well thought out as StackOverflow, though. There's no penalty to downvote, so people will downvote all the time without reason. Thus why most websites just don't allow downvoting at all.

    If you're getting downvoted, it's for a reason. Feel free to share here or on meta.stackoverflow.com if you can't figure out why.

    Regarding the fact that you've posted twice, at the time, yes, you had two posts in this thread. You're now up to 4. We still don't know anything about your problem other than the fact that you get downvoted on StackOverflow and apparently refuse to accept responsibility.
     
  14. firewood macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2003
    Location:
    Silicon Valley
    #14
    It would be great if there were a better, more mobile centric site. But currently, when searching for answers to mobile app coding questions, very often (over 50% of my queries) I find the most useful answers are buried somewhere in stackoverflow search results, not Apple's dev forum or any other forum.

    I also frequently check Apple's developer forums, but there are a ton of junk questions there that should be down-voted for basic lack of RTFM (or google it) competence.

    I also like stackoverflow because of questions that I almost know the answer to. If I'm curious and look up the details that I don't know, I've learned a bit about stuff that wouldn't have crossed my mind before.
     
  15. MeFromHere macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2012
    #15
    I don't know of a better forum than StackOverflow. Nothing else comes close.

    You haven't said what you are looking for. Do you mainly want to find already-existing answers to your questions? Do you want to post your own questions and get them answered? Do you want to participate in long discussions about a particular topic? Some of those things work very well at StackOverflow, and some are very actively suppressed.

    If your emphasis is mobile development, I'm assuming you mean iOS development since you're posting here. The best way to narrow what you see at StackOverflow is by using some well-chosen tags. For example, the best Q-and-A site I know of for iOS questions is
    http://stackoverflow.com/questions/tagged/ios

    There are active tags at StackOverflow for objective-c, swift, xcode, and particular versions of iOS.

    Sadly, I have to agree with ArtOfWarfare. The quality of your question here, and your attitude, would be a terrible fit for StackOverflow -- if that's the way you tried to interact there. But you haven't told us how you want to interact, so it's hard to suggest a better place to do it.
     
  16. theSeb macrumors 604

    theSeb

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2010
    Location:
    Poole, England
    #16
    I must say that stackoverflow is one of the best sites out there. The best bit is how often I have the same question that has already been answered and their search algorithms seem bloody good to me.
     
  17. firewood macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2003
    Location:
    Silicon Valley
    #17
    Yes!

    But not free. Pay some highly trained and very experienced mobile developers (maybe from $100 to $250 per hour) to answer your questions in your own private development forum. Most experts do not give away their time for free. (A few do, but not most.) You could also buy and use Developer program incidents for your questions at $50 a pop. You will often get a lot better answers much faster with less cruft hiring your own experts than asking random people on stackoverflow... but sometimes not, even after paying through the nose.

    So YMMV.
     
  18. kage207 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2008
    #18
    Mobile help forums... Very general. Very vague. Be specific when asking questions on the Internet please.

    In the world of programming, we are usually using our mental faculties to build a virtual world in our head to picture the problem. This is very hard to do when communicating with others. This is why developers value communication skills. As well as written and grammatically correct sentences.

    These sentences should not waste our time. Like ArtOfWar said; you haven't told us if you are look for a discussion based or Q&A. You haven't told us the problem(s) you have had with SO. Honestly, it's the best place to get help when programming.

    Yes, you should work hard to present your questions in a very specific and detail oriented as possible. By being clear as possible will help people visual the problem and help you with it. You should also include resources you've used to try and help solve your problem.

    The Internet is made of text. Most people do not have the time nor time scheduling available to them to do video conferencing to help. That's why having great written communication skills is a must in this field.

    I didn't like SO at first but once I focused in on helping others in the community, I began to realize how important all this is when helping. You start to value the questions being asked because you want the answer to already be out there. If you find answers out there related or similar to your question on SO, then include links and quotes from it to say what you don't understand or need help with. This will help others reference work you've done to maybe present the solution in a different manner to you but also gather information much more quickly.
     
  19. f77coder macrumors newbie

    f77coder

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2014
    Location:
    Twilight Zone
    #19
    That apple forum sucks, they don't take criticism well at all especially when you find bugs. I bitched about a few of their bugs, when they would be fixed and was banned.

    ----------

    SO is hit or miss. Like someone already wrote, if the answer is already there it's good. When you ask questions, people can be subjective and petty.

    ----------

    I have paid personal and commercial account. No they will not answer all of your questions, I've asked 2 and they couldn't/didn't want to answer.
     
  20. PhoneyDeveloper macrumors 68030

    PhoneyDeveloper

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2008
    #20
    @fortran, they banned you? kewl. They only deleted some of my posts.

    Anyway, it's the only forum where you're going to get info directly from Apple developers.

    If you compare this forum to that one you'll see that there are many more views per post on this one. Not what I would expect. You get better answers on that one though, at least for certain questions.
     
  21. firewood macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2003
    Location:
    Silicon Valley
    #21
    If neither Apple's incident support nor stackoverflow could give you an answer to a question, then why did you assume that a useful answer even existed.

    Sometimes people ask the stupidest questions. A developer should never assume that they aren't asking one of them.
     
  22. chrono1081 macrumors 604

    chrono1081

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2008
    Location:
    Isla Nublar
    #22
    I can't agree with this enough. It's incredibly hostile and their mods are straight up idiots.

    I asked a question before and they closed it without reading it and sent me links. I tried explaining it was not related to what those links provided and that I already searched and it turned into a freaking power struggle / pissing match with their mods saying things like "If you don't stop posting right now we will ban you!"

    Nothing but kids who live in their Mom's basements Mod that site in my opinion.

    ----------

    You and I have very different experiences. (And yes my question was flawless and I did plenty of research ahead of time. I do all I can to avoid registering for a forum).
     
  23. ArtOfWarfare macrumors 604

    ArtOfWarfare

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2007
    #23
    I get the idea you're clueless about how StackOverflow works. When you say mod, there are three possible things you're talking about:

    - A regular user with enough rep to do a certain activity, in this case I guess you mean Closing questions. That only requires 3K rep - I've had enough to do it for several months.

    - A diamond moderator. That's someone who is elected to the position by the community. If you don't like the diamond moderators, you should vote for someone else. And unlike the US's two party/winner take all system, there are no parties, and several people win in each election.

    - A stack exchange employee.

    None of these are "straight up idiots". They may live in their mom's basements, but so what? It's cheaper living in mom's basement.

    All of these require yourself to either contribute a lot of useful things to StackOverflow or to get through a fairly rigorous hiring process.

    If you'd like to share specific examples of where you think something was mistakenly closed, feel free to share a link. I have enough rep to reopen it. So do several others who frequent these forums.

    If you think something should be changed with StackOverflow, bring it up at meta.stackoverflow.com. If you think Stack Exchange itself has problems, bring it up on their meta.
     
  24. firewood, Apr 1, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2015

    firewood macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2003
    Location:
    Silicon Valley
    #24
    Not in my opinion. I've seen plenty of dumb close votes on perfectly good questions that later got good (better than any previous) answers. Some close votes seem to be because these types were voting on technical subjects they didn't understand well, but didn't have a clue that they didn't really understand.

    And arguing with these idiots makes one into a mud covered pig. So with a closed question, I usually just delete and hide for a few days, and then repost, making a nearly identical question look as completely and utterly different as possible, maybe even on a different stackexchange site.

    Another problem I see with stackoverflow is that my old nearly dumb answers to dumb question are often earning me the most rep points (I've got plenty), rather than my better researched answers to more difficult and interesting questions.

    But still, percentage wise, the non-idiots seem to outnumber the idiots, so I more than occasionally get or find very good and useful answers on stack-overflow and family.
     
  25. patent10021 thread starter macrumors 68020

    patent10021

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2004
    #25
    Wow. Back after a couple of weeks and it looks like a lot of people share the same sentiment as I do regarding Stack. Not surprisingly it's for similar reasons. Obviously they have or will see this thread so maybe they'll get their act together.

    I've been using a few alternatives that are much more community oriented and much more mobile centric. Ray Wenderlich, Code With Chris, and TeamTreeHouse to name a few. Also the iOS dev Meetups are really cool too. Thanks to Swift we're seeing a lot of new iOS instructors out there. Even the YouTube comment Q&As are proving to be more helpful than Stack.

    As others have said, Stack consists of retired programmers getting into Swift (spoken with many of those) and programmers who need to gain reputation points so they can look good at interviews (they're oblivious to the fact that recruiters are done with that). These guys tend to lack social skills that might help them get their foot in the door by speaking to a sentient being.

    What I do is post of the 3 forums I listed plus Stack. I get Swift answers on the 3 forums and mostly Objective-C answers on Stack. I've created about 5 accounts on Stack just to ask loads of questions and not give a rats bum if I get down-voted. Ironic how Stack can't figure out that their site is getting filled with junk accounts like mine due to their incessant down-voting. Won't be long before @end.
     

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