What happens when questions are merged? Specifically, what happens to the question body itself, and what if all the merged questions had an accepted answer? Which answer will be the accepted one after the merge?

I have a particular problem with this merged question. Two issues:

  1. The original question was about -20V to +20V input; the merged question about -2V to +2V. My method for solving the former (if you allow me saying) is clever, but is specific for this problem, where the input voltages go beyond the rails, and it doesn't work for the -2V to +2V. So, however elaborated, it seems out of place, and maybe even a bad answer, depending how you look at it. I find this very frustrating.
  2. No, I don't remember if my answer was the accepted one before the merge. But the currently accepted answer frustrates me as well. I know, the user who asks the question is free to accept any answer he wants, but I have the impression that the accepted answer may have been accepted because it was the only answer, again before the merge. It's very brief, vague and has no detail whatsoever. I try to give detailed answers so that others can learn from them. Again, frustrating.
  • \$\begingroup\$ There can be good reasoning to keep a question open if it is similar but different enough. +-2V is very close to diode reference, +-20 is far from the normal range a micro will have. does change the idea of keeping it open. I do not think that looking at that question that the user needed something fancy and could have easily done it with a resistor bridge. The issue is that it was both a bad question and a duplicate. Duplicate was chosen and your very high quality answer was taken. It might be worth making one question on mapping values to a micro ADC. \$\endgroup\$ – Kortuk Jul 3 '11 at 7:45
  • \$\begingroup\$ The answers would then cover, if Voltage is less then the range and needs an increase, if it is greater than and needs to be scaled down or situations like conditioning for surges. Your answer was not the only great one. I am very happy to see you an Olin so active! These are clearly not answers to your question but thought they might do well from being said. \$\endgroup\$ – Kortuk Jul 3 '11 at 7:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Kortuk - of course Olin was there too! :-) He's very knowledgeable, and comprehensive and detailed in his answers. Very useful for EE. \$\endgroup\$ – stevenvh Jul 3 '11 at 7:59
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Steven - I apologize for causing you frustration. I appreciate the effort you put into your answers, and want to make sure that effort is not wasted. \$\endgroup\$ – Kevin Vermeer Jul 5 '11 at 13:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Kortuk - The consensus at the time the question was asked was that the differences were not sufficient to leave the question open. In retrospect, the questions look a bit different. \$\endgroup\$ – Kevin Vermeer Jul 5 '11 at 13:32

Background in the blog:

In general I agree with you; "exact" duplicates is more of a platonic ideal than an actual reality in almost all cases. It's tricky.

  • \$\begingroup\$ What's wrong with blog.stackoverflow.com? I tried the links 6 hours ago, site seemed down, and still doesn't work. \$\endgroup\$ – stevenvh Jul 3 '11 at 15:48
  • \$\begingroup\$ @steve it is working now. \$\endgroup\$ – Jeff Atwood Jul 3 '11 at 20:42
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks. btw, the name is Steven, and don't you forget it! :-) \$\endgroup\$ – stevenvh Jul 4 '11 at 9:18
  • \$\begingroup\$ @steven where did you get that preposterous hypothesis? youtube.com/watch?v=FArZxLj6DLk#t=0m48s \$\endgroup\$ – Jeff Atwood Jul 4 '11 at 9:33

I was frustrated (as you were) by the proliferation of duplicate questions in that problem area. iUngi was asking new questions, being berated for asking very similar questions, but getting new answers and not learning from them. My goals were:

  1. To send send the message that abuse of our Q&A was unacceptable.
  2. To make the Q&A as useful for future readers as possible.

These goals shouldn't ever be in conflict with each other.

The apparently difficult question of sampling a low-frequency AC signal with the ADC of a PIC microcontroller has a plethora of questions from iUngi:

There are also other, older questions:

In hindsight, it appears that I focused too much on preventing abuse, and too little on accumulating good Q&A.


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