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On Hold SE Community Devs:

The short of it is, it's kinda on us to make something that works, and we don't really do that. There isn't any real proper integration between the systems and the authors suffer as a result of it. Ultimately leading to fairly ill fates to most all of the blogs. We're looking to fix all this but it's going to take some time, and we feel that it'd be better that we have people wait (or perhaps even prepare) for a more complete blog experience that we'll offer down the road.


Since all feedback on phase-1 has been positive (so far), it makes sense to (tentatively) begin phase 2 discussions: Defining the scope of what the blog will be.

This will help cement the tentative discussion in phase 1, and will also help those people who are uncertain whether to support the blog idea, or not.

This is a description of what 'defining the scope' means:

Is the blog about the site? Is it about the site’s topic? Is it about the industry around the topic? Keep in mind the audience of your community and their interests. Another generic blog about may not be all that interesting. A community blog should be interesting to both current members and potential new members.

How do you think the blog should be defined?

In this question, I recommend we use a system similar to what has been used in challenge meta questions:

  • one idea in each answer.
  • up-vote the idea if you believe that sort of topic is 'within scope' for the Blog.
  • down-vote if you believe it should be avoided (but please add a comment explaining your reasoning).

By setting it up this way, and because all answers to this question will be 'community wiki', there is no reason why you should not 'brainstorm' and come up with all sorts of ideas.... good, dubious, and just-for-discussion.

(and hey, some of you have never downvoted before - here's your chance to ... too.... ;-)

For your 'back-reference' this is the recommended procedure for establishing a site blog on Stack Exchange:

  1. Raise the idea on the meta site
  2. Define the purpose and scope (this post ...).
  3. Recruit contributors.
  4. Plan a schedule.
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Review Open-Source Software

On Code Review, asking to review other people's code is normally off-topic.1 However, a blog is not subject to the same restrictions.

Unlike most answers on Code Review, which are directed to a small audience, a technical review of widely used software would be of general interest. If we blog about a security, correctness, or performance bug, that could drive a lot of traffic to the site and illustrate the value that Code Review can provide to anyone's code.

Each post would focus on an interesting portion of a project, e.g. the authentication system in WordPress. (I've looked there, and it's not pretty!)


1 There is a possible loophole for open-source code. Anyone could claim to be a maintainer of a fork of an open-source project.

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  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ This is a great idea! \$\endgroup\$ – Simon Forsberg Apr 11 '14 at 19:39
  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ I hear OpenSSL may need a review or two. \$\endgroup\$ – jliv902 Apr 15 '14 at 20:30
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All of the Above.

Why restrict it to only one topic? Have a blog post about the evolution of Code Review, and the next one about Code Review itself, or when someone's inspiration pushes them to address language-specific common review issues, if it's good content it's content that we want, even if it's about common bad advice, or anything related to Code Review.

Chaotic? Okay, give it a name then. The scope is "Anything About Code Review" (AA/CR).

It's a Community thing. We chat about it, and then make it happen - we've done that all along, and we're getting pretty good at it (I think). I don't see what could go wrong with anyone submitting a draft to the BCC / "Blog Coordination Committee" (perhaps we can run an informal "meta-election" for seats?), and having it reviewed and eventually published.

The Blog Overflow page has a section titled "But we don’t have anything to write about":

But we don’t have anything to write about.

Sure you do! If there was nothing to write about, your Stack Exchange site wouldn’t exist! Stack Exchange sites trick you into writing.

  • Interview top users. Just who is that user who is shooting up the reputation leagues?
  • Highlight top content. What great question was posted on the site recently? Recognize it! Don’t just copy the question and its answers to the blog, blog about the question and its answers. A fine line there, eh? Delve deeper into the question or an answer. Add more context. Compare or analyze answers against each other. There is a lot to work with here.
  • Review a product. Reviews don’t fit the Q&A nature of the sites, but these rules don’t apply on the blog! Between a review written by a random person on the internet and a review written by a user on the site who consistently gets a lot of upvotes, which review would you trust more?
  • Tell us an interesting story. Did you go on an incredible cycling trip? Play a really interesting game? Read a great book on math? All it takes to get started is a set of pictures or screenshots you can share with some narrative stitching it together. So long as it’s topical and you’re excited about it, others in the community would probably enjoy sharing your experience!
  • Explore hot topics. Is there a topic on your site that keeps getting asked about over and over? [cough][cough] Maybe some tips or a closer look at the topic would interest the community.
  • Keep up with current events. What is making news for your community? What interests the community?

A lot of this contributes to making the blog interesting, with new topics every issue, and a lot of this contradicts the idea of having a narrow idea of what this blog is/should be all about.

It's about Code Review and its community - about our meta-frustrations (poor questions, graduation, etc.), our questions and our reviews, the review challenges, and everything else we do and think of; it's about us all, and everything that comes with that - monkeys, acronyms, zombies and all.

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  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ I agree with this. I think the most likely problem the blog is going to encounter is not enough content/not enough contributors. See e.g. the programmers.SE blog, which hasn't been updated in the last several months. And limiting the scope of the blog can only make that problem worse. \$\endgroup\$ – svick Apr 10 '14 at 2:15
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Common Bad Advice

About common bad advice and misconceptions that are often seen during code reviews.

pulled from Morwenn's Phase-1 meta question

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About Code Review itself

  • How to write a good question or a good answer.
  • What's on/off topic here (it won't hurt to remind what's good and what's not).
  • Why most of the questions migrated on Code Review are actually off-topic for this website.

pulled from Morwenn's Phase-1 meta question

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Adding to this, perhaps why questions migrated from Stack Overflow (this will probably happen a lot once it's available) are actually on-topic for this website. \$\endgroup\$ – nhgrif Apr 10 '14 at 1:22
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About the Code Review Community

  • how to understand the popular community memes
  • chat
  • etc.

pulled from Morwenn's Phase-1 meta question

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5
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Evolution of Code Review

About the evolution of Code Review (introduction of MathJax, graduation...).

pulled from Morwenn's Phase-1 meta question

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I guess that downvote means "keep that for beta-progress meta-tag", on Meta.CR? \$\endgroup\$ – Mathieu Guindon Apr 10 '14 at 1:12
5
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Language Specific Common Review Issues

About the common issues in the most popular languages on Code Review (C#, Java, C++, JavaScript, C, Python, etc).

Namespaces in C++, C# in general, etc.

pulled from Morwenn's Phase-1 meta question

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  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ I cannot down-vote my own answer :( I don't believe Code Review blog has the 'authority' to blog about specific language best practices. Blogs like that are available all over the place, and by people who are far more authoritative than a review community, and we would just add noise. \$\endgroup\$ – rolfl Apr 9 '14 at 23:56
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    \$\begingroup\$ There could very easily be blog entries about common language specific issues we see here without venturing anywhere near the realm of "best practice" questions. \$\endgroup\$ – nhgrif Apr 10 '14 at 1:18

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