I've been systematically going through old unanswered posts and flagging any that aren't answerable. There seem to be a lot of borderline posts where the post is not amenable to interpretation as-is, but could be, except the post is old and the poster hasn't been seen for months. Other posts are only partially answerable, and tend to feature such partial answers as comments. These seem to drive a good chunk of our unanswered questions ratio, and we ought to go through and clean up.

There's only about 140 unanswered questions, so even if we can just shave off 10-20, that would make a respectable dent. If you've got a free hour, please give me a hand.

2 Answers 2


Great idea. A bit of a spring cleaning sounds good.

I think the important thing is that we close questions because they are unanswerable and not just because it has not been answered.

We get some difficult questions on our site and we set a reasonable scientific standard for accepting answers, so it is natural that some questions do not have answers.

Thus, I think a complementary part of sprig cleaning could be:

  1. Go through the unanswered question list and add an answer. Even if you don't have a perfect answer or a complete answer, add something.
  2. Edit a question to clarify or refine it.
  • 2
    Yep, that's the idea. A few people each systematically answering one question a day could get through most of that list in a very reasonable amount of time. Apr 1, 2013 at 6:41
  • @Christian That sounds great. Apr 1, 2013 at 7:41

Since us mods might end up close voting some of these on our own, I feel it's important to be very transparent about it. Feel free to raise concerns if some of them don't deserve to be closed. Perhaps if this thread gets active we might also just update this answer instead of using flagging, so everyone can see them and cast close votes.




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