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Preview: Topic Approval Process


As part of the project to improve the topic creation process, we’re developing a tool for reviewing and gathering feedback on the proposed topics. It’s what we’re calling the “proposed topic tool” (creative name, eh?). I wanted to share a concept sketch of this to give you all a sneak peek into what we’re planning.

(And yeah, you’ll probably want to click on the image below so you can see the full size version and be able to read the annotations…)

Concept Sketch
Concept sketch of proposed topic tool
A few of the problems we’re trying to solve with this are:
  • Lack of good visibility into how much a potential topic is being used
  • Not being able to collect good community feedback on if something should be a topic or not
  • Difficulties in letting members know about new topics
  • Lack of a way to make new topic suggestions

Access Level
We’re planning to have this tool be available to a wide pool of members, potentially at Level 5 (50,000 points). I know that’s come up as a concern for topic editing, but what about for this? We definitely want to encourage the community at large to be able to be as involved as possible, while still helping prevent abuse or gaming the system.

Promoting to Official Status
As far as determining exactly how one of these topics gets promoted to official status, we’re still working through the details, but the top proposal now is that if a topic hits a vote threshold of 20 more in favor than not (Yes - No > 20), it would then get promoted, at least to start off. We'd anticipate needing to fine tune over time; depending upon how it goes and how many members get involved in providing feedback.

Keep in mind that this is not a final version and some features may change or not make the cut, but we hope it helps provide some good insight into the direction we’re headed.

Senior Product Manager
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Rank: Savant

Expert Comment

>>no new Questions can be posted in them...

I don't know about the Windows TAs but over in Oracle we get questions once in a while for LONG DEAD and unsupported versions.
Rank: Genius

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Nick672016-11-03 04:35 PMID: 1947209
For example Windows 2000, XP and 2003 are no longer supported

Neither is Office 2000 -- but we still see questions posed about that.
Neither is Office 2003 -- and that is personally still in production and will be for the foreseeable future.
Neither is DOS 6.2.2 -- but I do have stuff that absolutely needs to talk and walk on a real-time 16 bit O/S and not a VM.

One man's obsolete software package is another outfit's go to app.
I know folks who would pay me to get Word Perfect 7 going on modern machines if they could.

And it's a database -- deleting things breaks stuff so I doubt that's going on.
Rank: Savant

Expert Comment

>>deleting things breaks stuff so I doubt that's going on.

DBA's NEVER delete!!!!  We just hide things from everyone...

Here is me EE-frEEbEE.  It's a pretty quick fix and very minimal code change, at least for most of the databases I deal with...

Add a column to the topic table:  active char(1).
Set them all to 'Y'.
When one is declared "obsolete":  update topics set active='N' where topid_id=123;

Here is the minimal code change:  in the question topic selector add this to the where clause:  and active='Y'

Nothing else should need to change.:
Foreign key constraints are still in tact.
Questions with that TA will still show that TA.

There just can't be any new questions with it because it is never presented.
Rank: Ace

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Rob2016-11-03 05:15 PMID: 1947223
That's exactly what happens now slight :)

The lounge is a classic example
Rank: Savant

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Wasn't there also a "consolidation" in the past?
Rank: Ace

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Rob2016-11-03 07:34 PMID: 1947237
Indeed but they were "hidden" not "deleted"