Proposal to have all users under 30 reputation follow a question wizard.

Some people just don't use google and they ask questions that have been asked before or they ask unclear question, or off-topic ones, ...

So how about putting in a filter in the form of a wizard that would hold the absolute beginner's hand: the first screen should show the 4, 6, ... hottest questions on the site, just like like a browser's "new tab" window contains their most visited sites.

AU Wizard Screen 1 Why the hottest questions? The hottest questions is functionality that is already available on the SE network and it would be trivial for the SE employees to take existing code base and re-use it, and present it in containers instead of a list, whereas asking for additional functionality might get the proposal shot down.

If they pick one of the hottest questions on the site, that's where they’ll be re-directed immediately without any further interaction, otherwise they click Next or Finish.

And then all of the tags come up:

AU Wizard screen 2 Why a dumb tag list? Again: this is functionality nearly exists: The list of most common tags is there, it just needs some extra check-marks to make this into a functional wizard step. Re-use of the existing SE code-base so more likely to be accepted.

Allow the user to select some tags and press Next or Finish.

If no tags are taken, do an Oli: Execute the most commonly used commands we ask them to execute anyway and post it to http://paste.ubuntu.com and link back to the question.

Propose a question:

With the tags and the hardware info, create a normal question that the user then still has to edit, or just approve depending on the quality of the tags/hardware detection we did, so the user will get used to what kind of questions to ask once the wizard disappears when their reputation gets high enough.

Additional ideas:

  • give the beginning user additional rep if questions do not need to be revised. (+2 goes to poster instead of editor) Source

And now only Finish remains so the question gets posted.

  • 4
    Send this to meta.se - this is something THEY have to develop. Successful or not here on meta.askubuntu, only the SE people can develop it. And if you are getting banned/burned there then you're doing something wrong. – Thomas Ward Jan 27 '15 at 15:31
  • @ThomasW. Yes I will, but only if I can get enough support here first... Not wasting my resources on SE if even AU isn't interested, so upvote if you like the Q in itself. I'm always open to constructive criticism... Chat??? – Fabby Jan 27 '15 at 15:33
  • I've been burnt once... That's why I'm looking for input from smart people! ;-) – Fabby Jan 27 '15 at 15:38
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    To be honest, Fabby, I think your question could really be improved a lot. It uses bold and italics without reason, it has weird screenshots. It is poorly researched (Oli has already done a lot of work on wizards). Don't want to offend you my Belgian friend, but I think this question could get burned here as well (having said that, I will abstain from voting for several days). – don.joey Jan 27 '15 at 15:51
  • @don.joey: please, edit the crap out of it! Teach me something! ;-) (on how to post stuff here or on Meta.se, where it'll end up anyway) – Fabby Jan 27 '15 at 15:57
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    Fabby, again no offense, but I have just given you at least three pointers on how to improve it. I am not going to spend the next 10 minutes doing that improvement myself. It is your question/suggestion. – don.joey Jan 27 '15 at 15:58
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    @ThomasW. I have to agree with Fabby here, this question is On-Topic here on Meta.AU. The What is "meta" page specifically mentions that "Meta is for ... Ask Ubuntu users to communicate with Stack Exchange the company (posting bugs, suggesting improvements, or proposing new features)," – RPiAwesomeness Jan 27 '15 at 16:01
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    I did something similar on Stack Apps: stackapps.com/questions/3118/… – Nathan Osman Jan 28 '15 at 5:39
  • @NathanOsman: I tried out your ans Oli's script with Scriptish, but cannot seem to get either running. Care for some help in the chat? (I did read the source code) – Fabby Jan 30 '15 at 8:54
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    Keep in mind that any wizard is going to seem to new users like the process for posting questions in general. So after they pass the "wizard-required" stage, they're going to be confused by the "no wizard-involved" stage, which they'll have to relearn because it's totally different. – Kzqai Jan 30 '15 at 16:30
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    @ThomasW. the SE folks watch the child metas. This is specific to AU and belongs here, not on the main one. Only things that affect all sites should go to meta.SE. – terdon Jan 31 '15 at 12:13
  • @Kzqai: Maybe I haven't been clear enough in my text, but what I wanted to say was: the end result will be a normal question, which the user then has to review so they will get used to asking the question themselves! Thank you for the feed-back editing now! – Fabby Jan 31 '15 at 12:42
  • @terdon: I think that the truth lies somewhere in de middle between you and ThomasW. as this could be beneficial for a cooking site as much as AU, except for step 3 (the script, which is technical) would only benefit a technical site... – Fabby Jan 31 '15 at 12:49
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    @Fabby it might be beneficial but only if that community thinks so. Personally, I would hate this kind of thing to appear to me as I dislike wizards and doubt it will be helpful on most sites. AU and SU are exceptions because of the very bad average quality of the questions. In any case, this is an AU issue since it is AU who are asking (or deciding whether to ask) for it. The SE devs watch the child metas so you don't need to go to the main one for feature requests unless you are suggesting something be adopted network-wide. – terdon Jan 31 '15 at 13:00
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    Why under 30? Someone with decent rep on another SE site will get 100 points just for dropping by. Of course the assumption is that other sites generate better questions. Food for thought. – Elder Geek Feb 20 '15 at 16:56

Great proposal in my humble opinion. At the very least adopting @Oli Alpha-testing a wizard would be a huge step in the right direction and would cover the vast majority of the questions I've seen where the user seems incapable of forming a good question. (Granted my experience is somewhat limited compared to many of you) If we could at least get that to start with we could beg for as needed improvements later. Of course if this is like union negotiations we'd have to ask for the world first and settle for what we could get....

  • 1
    "The world" for me would be Oli's script included. The minimum (which would work across the entire SE network) is the first two. Comments? – Fabby Jan 30 '15 at 8:28
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    Let the negotiations begin! – Elder Geek Jan 30 '15 at 14:41
  • Shall we begin union-wise by pouring some fuel into some old tires and setting them alight? ;-) – Fabby Jan 31 '15 at 12:57
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    That seems a bit extreme... :-D – Elder Geek Jan 31 '15 at 15:22

I agree with Elder Geek
It would be very helpful and would help teach alot of people (including myself) what is considered proper formatting.

It should also allow for some extra rep (a very small amount) upon completion.
The better the question format, the more rep should be offered.

I'd like to up-vote both the question and the answer to it as both are very good,
but of course my rep wrongly states I don't know how to use those features.

I only talk about this because I most likely won't be back to up-vote these when I gain my ability.
but it's a good system flaw to point out.

  • 1
    I like the idea of offering rep for good questions. Now beginning editors get +2 rep for editing malformed questions. If new questions get revised and passed without editing, why not giving it to the original poster? Getting more rep for better questions would be very hard to implement though... – Fabby Feb 2 '15 at 19:48
  • As to your "system flaw": it used to be like that... Unfortunately there are things like Internet trolls... :-( – Fabby Feb 2 '15 at 19:50
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    Yea, I figured it had to do with them, and just plain people who would use it unruleingly, there should be something that lets people get off early on that, however, trolls can still abuse it after following the guidlines, even with the current system, which is something that can't exactly be fixed... other than moderation and banning... heh – Tcll Feb 2 '15 at 20:39

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