What Are Discussion Forums And Q&A Sites For Better Scientific Software?

An increasing number of online discussion forums or question and answer (Q&A) sites on the internet support communities with common interests, such as computational science and engineering (CSE). Users of the site may ask questions pertaining to the topic of the site, which are answered by other members of the community. Typically multiple users can offer answers, and the community can endorse certain answers as being better or more useful than others. Such sites typically define their scope, and questions which are considered out of scope are discouraged. The character of a site can evolve over time. Questions on a particular topic, particularly if they receive good answers, can attract other questions on that topic and related ones. While it is always a good idea to try to understand the intended scope of the site before you post, don't be afraid to ask questions you think are within that scope, even if you don't see (many) other questions you would consider similar. The moderators may suggest a different venue. You may not get (good) answers. But you might also give an expert a chance to show their expertise and get a really good answer.

Published May 21, 2017

Contributor David Bernholdt

This topic covers resources which are open to questions about software development, productivity, and sustainability, as opposed to, for example, questions about algorithms or the use of particular numerical libraries, or other questions about CSE software (though in many cases, sites may be open to a broader range of questions).