6

A concern was voiced about a recent question we got about all of the abilities in League of Legends. You could similar questions to this for games like Sora or Star Ocean 3 or numerous other games, without issue. That's because they're static - you'll never need to update them once you've compiled everything, barring the presence of the exceptionally rare patch/update.

It's very different for games like League of Legends, or Team Fortress 2, which are not only updating but frequently updated. This is far from the first we run into these - this answer dates shortly after our private beta ended, and even without playing TF2 I can tell you that the list is beyond outdated. And thus we have our problem - dynamic games like these require very high maintenance for questions like this.

One of the problems I voiced long ago with regards to repositories is that of "Motivation for Quality". Our mission in being an awesome resource that has the answer people are looking for, this demands us to try and stay on top of things. This is why we have continuing discussions on what to do about all our old content about how things worked in older patches. These questions, however, don't simply change on a patch here or there - they're fully expected to be different with each iteration, they're demanding maintenance. Unfortunately, maintenance of our own guides is a bit problematic because as time grows, our own content will grow. Not only will the job of maintenance become practically full-time, but it will also start to cloud new content.

How can we address the issue of high maintenance questions like these? How do we prevent them from being either an out-of-control beast, or an un-updated sack of lump that has long lost its sheen of usefulness? What strategies do we have that can handle these without interfering with the normal flow of activity on the site? Or should we consider that we must change the flow of our site to accomodate these?

  • I know that doesn't solve the general problem discussed here, but that TF2 example question would only need a link update to the Official TF2 Wiki and the answer would mostly be fine. – CruelCow Jun 17 '11 at 22:46
3

First, the question/answer date should be much more visible, so a reader who looks at the question/answer will know its not up to date, or maybe even doing a graphic effect/tag of some kind that is automatically applied on older questions.

And questions that we know are volatile can be tagged with a special kind of tag that obsoletes it over time, perhaps? SO has the same issues where a missing function in some library may be added in, but the workaround code is still hanging around and will show up on google search. Its mostly ignored there, however, due to sheer volume of answers.

  • 1
    Perhaps even something that could be noted after the question, but before the answers, along the lines of "This accepted answer is more than X days old, and may have outdated information." Could even put in a conditional to say "Update this answer by editing it!" if it's CW, or "Know a better answer? Post one below!" if it's not. – TheQ Jun 17 '11 at 13:36
  • 1
    @TheQ I'm really not in favor of having disclaimers for "This could be out of date", it rather diminishes the image of the site as a top-notch resource. I'm of mind that we either need to be on top of things ourselves, or provide resources that will be on top of things. – Grace Note Jun 17 '11 at 13:43
  • @Grace Point taken. In contrast though, by providing resources that are on top of things, we are potentially driving traffic away from the site (even if the means to getting it was via our site, it may not end up that sustained traffic is through ours). Which leaves then, in my eyes, the maintenance control option, which is indeed the monster of a problem that we're facing. – TheQ Jun 17 '11 at 13:48
  • @TheQ, I don't know that traffic is necessarily that much of an issue in this context - there will always be questions that we can't handle well here, for one reason or another. Some of them will be popular, and thus we'll be turning away traffic ... but it's traffic we don't "want". – Dave DuPlantis Jun 17 '11 at 23:31
  • I think actively acknowledging that the information may be outdated shows a better image than trying to pass off two year old questions in a dynamically updated game as up to date. – l I Jun 18 '11 at 1:26
3

Simply provide a link to a wiki page with third-party constantly up to date content, with real tables we cannot provide, and a textual summary of that (e.g., "clicking on the relevant trinket brings up a dialog showing the extent of its sproodle capabilities", or "all trinkets can sproodle with 40% chance, except for the Super Boss Trinket received when you sproodle a million sboofs.").

  • It could be valid if a page that answers the question already exists, but if it is not available what can we do? IMHO in that recent question there is a good example of a quality answer; @Raven did a good job in aggregating information coming from different sources and from its experience. – Drake Jun 17 '11 at 16:05
0

I know some of the other stack exchange sites use community wikis for things like this. I don't know the mechanics of how those work, but if multiple people can edit them then it would help to keep this stuff up to date even if the original questioner loses interest.

  • the problem with CW is still the lack of motivation of people to update the information. They don't gain any rep nor badges, only satisfaction. If we can somehow motivate them with update bounties of some kind that might work out. – l I Jun 18 '11 at 1:25

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .