After Further Review…

I’ve spent a little time in the Stack Overflow review queues as of late, trying to do my civic duty by helping the programming community, and I’ve learned a few things:

  • If the question is about C or C++ code, it’s someone’s homework assignment. Odds are good that they want you to solve it for them, or that they don’t know how to Google the error message they’re seeing.
  • If the question is about PHP code, it’s someone in a non-English-speaking country trying to set up an e-commerce website and badly misusing some framework they found.
  • If the question is about Java or C#, it’s a hunk of very simple backend business code that pulls data from a database and puts it on a screen, and they’ve managed to fail to understand simple math or data structures involving user accounts and money.
  • If the question (or answer) is really good, it was only just a test to make sure you were paying attention, and you passed.
  • If the question contains no code at all, it’s that rare question that you can just reject immediately as incomplete, incoherent, and too broad.
  • If the question is about Laravel, just run away screaming.

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