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As an Expert, what method do you use to find questions to answer? What topics are followed?

I am trying to get away from using email as I used to rely 100% on email alerts. Even with using rules that I find need tweaking and using different devices, I am making an effort to  not use email though I still get alerts as back up. The past year I have bee using mainly the onsite notifications (bell/notifications.jsp) and Browse > Open questions.  

Browse > Open questions takes you to https://www.experts-exchange.com/answer.jsp where you have filters for both Saved Search's and Topics.  With the new ability to view open questions by topic, I seem to use that over my saved searches which admittedly really need tweaking.

Now topics are being generated on the fly in the question wizard.  When a topic is created, it goes to a vote {Browse > Topics > Propose A Topic lands on https://www.experts-exchange.com/proposedTopics.jsp.  

I recently asked a question  and found that my topics were filled in and for the most part it worked, however, what worked was filling in proposed topics that would not have any Experts following and it is debatable if those keyword (  lenovo*, c, bitlocker* ) were actually what I would consider a topic.

Bitlocker for instance could be argued that it belongs under OS Security or maybe Security

"C" must have showed up because of my line, "The drive is C but bitlocker created an X drive." and that is understandable and easy to remove. If I had left as is, I would have been able to finish my question because "C" is a regular topic but  how would Experts know to look at my question?  I think that depends in part on how experts look for open questions either by alerts or browsing and visually looking.

The other issue this brings up is how topics are used and what should the definition of a topic be?  Should proposed topics show up right away in a question?
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Author Comment

Scott Fell2017-09-22 02:18 PMID: 2060261
John, I did the same.  I rely on on site notifications almost exclusively plus Brows -> Open Questions.
Rank: Ace

Expert Comment

PatHartman2017-09-22 02:30 PMID: 2060266
I much prefer the method used by access-programmers.co.uk
In the individual forums, if a question has a new response, it pops to the top of the list so you always know what is most active.  The interface also marks threads you have participated in.

For this site, I use the bell and check the Access forum for new activity.  I get notifications on the bell that are not Access for abandoned items because I also answer a lot of questions in related forums.

I turned off my email as far as I could.  Email notifications were interfering with my real work and a few months back we had several episodes that went on for days where EE was spamming me mercilessly.
Rank: Elite

Expert Comment

John2017-09-22 02:48 PMID: 2060268
plus Browse -> Open Questions

This is pretty much what I do:  Contribute, Answer Questions and provide assistance wherever I am able to.
Rank: Ace

Expert Comment

aikimark2017-09-23 04:39 PMID: 2060361
My email filter directs the items to a non-inbox folder
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Expert Comment

Rob2017-09-24 03:20 PMID: 2060445
I would love to just use on-site notifs though I have so many different saved searches with alerts that it makes it impossible to filter comments from questions asked.

I, therefore, resort to email to manage the notifs as it allows for easy filtering into the relevant folders e.g. "Question Comment", "Neglected Question" etc
Rank: Elite

Expert Comment

John2017-09-24 06:09 PMID: 2060452
In order to reduce the drivel in my email, I got rid of saved searches, discussion groups, posts, gigs, live and all other sorts of notification.

What is left then, are solely Q&A Alerts and that is where I exist here.