Stack Overflow is a question-and-answer website that unites computer programmers worldwide.
The site serves as a repository of information about computer programming. It’s named after the software error that occurs when a program runs out of memory.
Stack Overflow facilitates collaboration, problem-solving, and knowledge-sharing among individuals, groups, and organizations.
Stack Overflow pros
- Ask questions and get practical, detailed answers
- Tags and filters make questions and answers easy to find
- Communities of like-minded computer programmers sharing information
- No advertisements or spam
- Voting system to promote accurate answers
- Smart participants with fast responses
Stack Overflow cons
- Resistance to newbies asking questions
- Guides about how to ask a question are difficult for beginners
- Down-voting by fellow users without explanation or instruction
- No way to refine and edit existing questions and answers
- Moderators don’t always facilitate discussions efficiently
How to get your questions answered on Stack Overflow
Stack Overflow offers tips to help you ask a question in a way that will receive an answer. Here’s a breakdown:
- Have a concise, descriptive title.
- Write your question using appropriate terms, proper grammar, and language that fully explains your issue.
- Adding code helps, but make sure you explain the problem fully first.
- Provide enough information to help others recreate your issue.
- Use all applicable tags.
- Proofread before you post to ensure your question is clear and concise.
- Respond to feedback and provide answers to follow-up questions from fellow users.
More free coding resources
Stack Overflow can help you find answers to questions about computer programming, but additional resources exist that benefit coders and programmers. We’ve listed some key websites below.
Codecademy is an interactive platform with free coding classes in 12 programming languages. Codeacademy also provides career path programs, projects, documents, and a blog to give you insight into the world of computer programming. Pricing varies.
Check out our full Codecademy review here.
Code Project exists for individuals who code. With question-and-answer forums, discussions, articles, and a thriving community with more than 15 million members, Code Project also features competitions and surveys.
GitHub is a platform where users build, distribute, and maintain software. GitHub users can accelerate their coding with software packages from the site’s registry.
Coders can also post code and share it with fellow users. This makes the site a popular coding portfolio host.
GitLab, a complete DevOps platform, allows software professionals to carry out all project tasks from one location. GitLab is an application with free open and private repositories of content.
Users can access GitLab’s community programs, technology partnerships, and remote events.
Quora, a general-purpose question-and-answer forum, also hosts information on computer programming topics.
Quora has forums for coding advice, general information about programming, and exploring more advanced aspects of the field. The site is searchable by keyword.