In this question asker asks a question which shows some hurdle he encountered, but for which he had a solution even before he asked about it. The argument was that it might be useful to others.

Do we want this? I find solutions for problems I run into all the time, I'm not going to keep myself busy with posting each and every one of them here. IMO it will generate a lot of noise.


Here's a related post on Meta.Stackoverflow: Can I answer my own questions, even those where I knew the answer before asking? and there's also a blog post titled, quite clearly, It’s OK to Ask and Answer Your Own Questions.

The official network policy is to explicitly encourage this behavior. If the question and answer pair represent good content, we want it here!

However, the question and answer must still stand up to the ordinary scrutiny applied to other posts. The question must not be too localized, which occasionally happens on these posts. The answer must be high-quality and detailed; it should explain why it is the best solution to the problem, not just "well, this seemed to work for me."

In this case the original answer was low-quality, but after edits it looks like valuable content that we want to have on the site.


Yes, we want this. It's one of the reasons Stack Exchange was created. The Self-Learner badge is awarded to people who answer their own questions and get a score of 3 or more.

If you look some programming question up on the web and you are unsatisfied with the results, post the question and answer on Stack Overflow (yes, it is OK and even encouraged to answer your own questions, if you find a good answer before anyone else.)



Just post your answer immediately after you post the question. Like you say, phrase it as a request for comments to improve your solution



There are already numerous posts that answer their own questions. There's nothing wrong with it. It's even encouraged.



Now it's a site feature:


  • \$\begingroup\$ This is an addition to promote it to a greater extent, it was already considered by SE policy to be accepted. \$\endgroup\$ – Kortuk May 23 '12 at 9:25
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Kortuk of course, it was just a way to report the thing; I was also thinking about posting it as a self-answered question :) \$\endgroup\$ – clabacchio May 23 '12 at 9:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yucc. We're inviting every moron that took two weeks to blink a LED with a 555 timer to tell us all the stupid things he did along the way. I really don't want to hear how someone had a sudden revelation that the Vdd pin had to be connected to 5 volts. People shouldn't be allowed to self-judge how important, relevant, and useful their silly-ass problems are to others. \$\endgroup\$ – Olin Lathrop May 23 '12 at 19:18
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @OlinLathrop that's why you can downvote it :) and, most important, why you can upvote good content. We only have to make this working, so let's vote more ;) \$\endgroup\$ – clabacchio May 23 '12 at 22:18

I frequently find interesting solutions for problems I don't have (I'm sure we all do). If we all posted those ideas, the site's usefulness would descend rapidly.

There are occasional exceptions (Olin's post on rules for schematics being a case-in-point). However, these need to be community wiki (with all the controversy that entails ... !).

  • \$\begingroup\$ olins post was specifically requested so that we had somewhere to send those that do not meet his quality guidelines. :) \$\endgroup\$ – Kortuk May 8 '12 at 23:07

I don't think this should be encouraged. People that have problems that seem big to them often overestimate the relevance and frequency of this problem to others. That was certainly the case here. The problem was very localized, and the necessary context was not provided so the question and answer is useless to other that don't have exactly this unique and unusual problem.

Basically, the person with a problem shouldn't be the judge of whether it is relevant or likely to occur to others. All too often we end up with Looky world, I done solved me a problem! kind of answers, like this one.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Exactly my thoughts too. Thanks for sharing. \$\endgroup\$ – stevenvh May 8 '12 at 12:37

You must log in to answer this question.

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