On Saturday 04 November 2006 15:27, Darryl Gregorash wrote:
You cannot expect someone who has little or no experience with the Unix-like environment to know, by any means, how best to ask a *nix-related question. The differences with what they are used to using are simply far too great.
Wrong. The how-tos of good question-asking are unrelated to the topic area. The context is:
- There's a specific domain (in this case, SuSE Linux, but it could be anything). The question must regard this domain. - There's an existing body of readily accessible information (man pages, books & magazines, the Internet, etc.). The questioner should make some attempt to discover the answer independently. - There are conventions on how to use the medium--email--to interact with the community to which you're directing your inquiry. Proper juxtaposition of quoted material and added response should be respected. Quoted material should be trimmed. Etc.
The only thing in this set-up that is domain-specific is the domain itself. A well-formed question submitted here after the proper homework is done is a well-formed question that is about SuSE Linux. Period.
It's basically a matter of formality. If you go to a court of law and speak in some non-legalistic vernacular, you'll be reprimanded. If you submit an article for publication in a magazine on Astronomy and use the argot of the surfing community (even though the article's topic is something astronomical), it'll be rejected. And so on.
For those interested and not already familiar, Eric Raymond has written the long form of these guidelines: