Any Guidelines For Good Q&A Questions?

Want to chit chat about anything, do it here ... posting here won't increase your post count (or shouldn't!). Please do not post any "phpBB" specific topics here unless they do not fit into the category above. Do not post bug reports, feature or support requests!
Forum rules
Please do not post any "phpBB" specific topics here unless they do not fit into the category above.

Do not post bug reports, feature or support requests! No really... Do not post bug reports, feature or support requests! Doing so will make Bertie a very sad bear indeed. :(
Post Reply
abrogard
Registered User
Posts: 0
Joined: Wed Jun 05, 2013 1:33 am

Any Guidelines For Good Q&A Questions?

Post by abrogard » Wed Jun 05, 2013 1:52 am

I belatedly realise the Q&A thing is not as simple as it looks at first. To create good questions, I mean. I note this board calls for something pretty arcane, requiring a lookup elsewhere if one wasn't in that field.

Anything calling for a 'yes' or 'no' answer is out, isn't it? Because bots would automatically try both 'yes' and 'no' as a simple first step I suppose.

To my shame that's what most of my questions have called for until now.

And any question with the answer contained within it would be out, too, because bots probably automatically provide every permutation of the words of the question.

But almost any other kind of question gets too vague to reliably work for the user.

So you can't say 'are elephants big?' because that dies beneath 'yes' and 'no'

and you can't say 'elephants are fish, animals, birds, which?' because that dies beneath presentation of each of the words in the sentence

but if you say 'what is an elephant?' the bot won't get it but you might not list all of the possible answers because the possible answers are multitudinous.

The next recourse - clear questions with a well defined answer but not presented within the question and not a simple yes or no is out, too, because of google. 'who is president of the usa?' won't work because it could be googled - I just got an unambigous 'barack obama'.

I just had a thought - what about this kind of thing: 'think of a number, double it, add six, take away three, take away another three, halve it and take away the number first thought of - what's the result?' Zero of course. Is that somewhere down the right track?

I'm thinking there must have been a lot of thought gone into this and some fairly good guidelines discovered. Can anyone tell me what they are, please, before my new boards get spammed?

User avatar
imkingdavid
Registered User
Posts: 1050
Joined: Thu Jul 30, 2009 12:06 pm

Re: Any Guidelines For Good Q&A Questions?

Post by imkingdavid » Tue Jul 16, 2013 4:36 am

There's a small section in this topic about determining good Q&A questions.

BTW, I'd steer clear of mathematical word problems. If I were registering and saw one of those as a requirement, I would probably not register. :P
I do custom MODs. PM for a quote!
View My: MODs | Portfolio
Please do NOT contact for support via PM or email.
Remember, the enemy's gate is down.

abrogard
Registered User
Posts: 0
Joined: Wed Jun 05, 2013 1:33 am

Re: Any Guidelines For Good Q&A Questions?

Post by abrogard » Tue Jul 16, 2013 9:47 am

Thanks for that. I appreciate it. I see it was a 2011 thread, I think, right?

We could do with an update on the subject, I think.

That small section offered only two kinds of Q&A:

1. 'first three and last chars or URL' type thing and
2. 'grass is to lawn as ..... if to forest'

I think that boils down to only one.

Seems to me 'first', 'last', 'chars' are all clue words that can be used in a software routine to crack the code. That kinda fits into the category I was talking about - 'questions with the answer contained within them because bots will try every permutation' - given some 'clue words' to work on.

But the second category is hopeful. Needs a bit of thought. Many folks would be put off by the very appearance of such a question just as you suggest you'd be put off by the appearance of a maths looking question.

And some such questions are simply too hard because not every individual's mind works the same way. In fact there's many individuals don't cotton onto this concept at all - 'this is to that and the other is to something else'.

But it is a very hopeful direction I think.

Contains 'clue words', sure, and a programmer could write something that would be capable of recognising it is that kind of question and set the processor to work cracking the possibilities.. running down the hits from thesaurus perhaps, I guess. But I think in the ordinary world it'd be just about totally safe.

I just thought of a method I saw mentioned one time, saw it used, didn't see it mentioned and I've forgotten it until now - it asked a question about something on the screen - like for instance an image of a flower in the bottom left corner - 'what's that in the bottom left corner?'

that kind of thing would be pretty hard to crack, I think.


Currently my own Q & A's are still the vulnerable things I had weeks, months ago...

:)

kennethedward
Registered User
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Oct 23, 2013 9:49 am

Re: Any Guidelines For Good Q&A Questions?

Post by kennethedward » Fri Oct 25, 2013 9:56 am

You can also go for solving puzzles as these are not easy. Then there is matching two images or find out difference between two exactly similar images.
Want your precious idea to be patented, then patent attorney can provide you the right guidance. a fantastic read

Post Reply