# Question author updated the code as a diff. Should I have applied the patch?

Project Euler, Challenge #12 in Swift

If editing in the edit keeps the question clear, should we edit the edit into the question instead of leaving it as two separate blocks of code?

It seemed obvious to me that the user wanted to edit the code into the code block but is used to using forums without the edit functionality. As @Vogel says, posts shouldn't have "scars."

So, should I have edited the "Edit" into the question, or not?

• an Edit: block isn't "SO's way of doing things". It's unnecessary and a relic from the times of forums where there was no revision history. Posts shouldn't have scars – Vogel612 Aug 21 '15 at 13:43
• so it should be edited away – Malachi Aug 21 '15 at 13:45
• And when it is clear how to edit it away, that is done. The problem is, it's now always clear. I'm posting an answer, but your edit didn't follow what was necessarily the clear and only path and it left the question just as confusing as it was before your edit. – nhgrif Aug 21 '15 at 13:46
• Basically... Editception? – Jamal Aug 21 '15 at 16:42
• Only if he edits the edit of the edit....within the edit. – Legato Aug 21 '15 at 16:46
• I think it is now important to note that the OP has returned and has himself rolled back the edit we're debating... – nhgrif Aug 21 '15 at 17:26

Your solution is to tell the OP what he should be doing. Don't do things based on assumptions of intent.

If the OP cares enough to post here, and genuinely wants a review, he should also care enough to adjust accordingly; ensuring his question is clear and on topic. if OP isn't invested enough to pay this small cost of admission, it's even less of a reason to fix it for them, even less of a reason to answer the question at all.

Also, if edits that altogether replace chunks of code are present, I would even suggest that OP should spend some time on his code, and when he's completed it, to the extent of his ability, then he should come back here and post that.

• "Don't do things based on assumptions of intent." I completely agree with this; this is also the exact same reason why we can't just copy code from external links into the post. – SirPython Aug 21 '15 at 13:56

# NO. On so many levels, no.

First, your edit changes the code only. Maybe this is what the OP intended, but does the plain-English part of the question still make sense after the edit? You didn't check. I didn't check (and I'm one of the few who could have checked). We don't know if the plain-English part still makes sense after the code edit.

Second, this is very much so NOT Stack Overflow's way of doing things. Not even remotely. First of all, "Edit" blocks shouldn't be inserted in the first place. But in chat, you made the example of.... and paraphrasing...

If I post a question to Stack Overflow, I will continue to work on my problem on my own. I'm not going to stop. If I solve my own problem, I will edit the answer into the question.

This is wrong and that edit gets rolled back on Stack Overflow every single time.

Stack Exchange is a network of questions and answers. It's not a network of blog posts. If the asker has an answer to their own question, they should post it... as an answer.

Third and perhaps most importantly, we should make no assumptions for the OP. We should only make efforts to do things for the OP when it is absolutely clear that this is what the OP wanted (but for some reason they were struggling to get it done).

• your paraphrase is based on your argument and not my intent. if I continue to work on my code, my code may change, but my problem may still exist. editing the answer into the question is not what I meant. that would be like a selfie in the OP itself. again, not what we are talking about here. – Malachi Aug 21 '15 at 14:04

# Treading on Shaky Ground

• There is no way of knowing if the user wanted the new code separated so that they could be told which code was better.

• There is no way of knowing if the rest of the question's content is still intact in the posters mind, except for the fact that the user only posted the edit of a specific part of the code, and did not change the posts text saying that their concerns had changed.

• Assumption that the "Edit" was a remnant of habits retained from using forums without the functionality of editing the original post (OP)

• Assumption that the "Edit" was an attempt to make the code more efficient in line with the original content of the post, and should have been edited into the original block of code, inline, rather than an after thought.

With all these unknowns, just close.

Let the author ask the questions, be prepared to give answers.

If an edit needs to be made, let a Moderator handle it because that is what they have been trained to do.