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General Discussion

James Barnett
James Barnett
39,199 Points

How to ask good questions on the forum

Use a Descriptive Title

Bad:

Help!!! I'm stuck with CSS on a code challenge

Good:

Build a simple website > Code Challenge: Using Classes - Step 2/3


Keep it Short

5 to 10 words is usually a good length for a title.

A descriptive yet to the point title, allows people to read it at a glance while looking through the list of posts.


Give a Link to the Culprit

  • If you have having an issue with a code challenge / quiz / video post a link to that
  • Mention at what point you ran into trouble
    • What step on the code challenge
    • What time index during the video
    • Which question on the quiz

Show Us Your Code

  • If it's HTML/CSS/Javascript/JQuery related use codepen.io
  • If it's PHP use a PHP Playground
  • If you are using the Javascript console, JSBin has a online Javascript console you can link to.
  • If you are using Ruby, Ruby Fiddle
  • If none of that applies, post your code in the forum, identing each line of code 4 spaces

Never used codepen.io before?

Here's a step-by-step guide to creating working examples using codepen


Remember to cateorgize your post


Use Markdown Formatting

Markdown can format:

  • Links
  • (Un)ordered Lists
  • Images
  • Code
  • Bold/Italics

There's a Markdown Cheatsheet below the text field where you post on the forum.

16 Answers

Mat Helme
STAFF
Mat Helme
Treehouse Guest Teacher

Hey James, great break down. This is awesome!

Amit Bijlani
STAFF
Amit Bijlani
Treehouse Guest Teacher

Thanks James! This is really helpful for everyone. Will see if we can make this post into a sticky.

Andrew Chalkley
STAFF
Andrew Chalkley
Treehouse Guest Teacher

This is a great post James! +1 to get this sticky :)

James Barnett
James Barnett
39,199 Points

@Amit -

As much as I love writing about using codepen.io 5 times a day ...

Making this a sticky would rock :)

Clap

There seriously needs to be some consistency in the titles. I have been trying to use a generalised approach with titles such as 'Business: I need help regarding x y z' or 'WordPress: Customising the loop to do bibbady bobbady boo'. But this approach is much much better. +1 for this to be sticky like Marmite.

Alex Hedley
Alex Hedley
16,378 Points

Great post!

Could there be a button added to the code challenge page(s) that says "stuck, need help?" Click on it and it creates a new post in the forum prefilling the above details? Or opens the forum with the given tags that relate to that specific challenge?

James Barnett
James Barnett
39,199 Points

@Alex - Slick idea :)

I created a feature request thread to discuss it.

Ben Jakuben
STAFF
Ben Jakuben
Treehouse Teacher

Great post and great ideas, everyone! Keep them coming as we want this to evolve around everyone's needs!

Adam Soucie
PLUS
Adam Soucie
Courses Plus Student 8,710 Points

Suddenly I feel this forum needs a "Like" button ;)

bill burles
bill burles
3,788 Points

I actually disagree.

Whilst a perfectly formatted and titled post in an ideal world is great to me being this picky stops the natural flow of forums.

I'm on lots of forums social networking etc and often quickly write something, comment etc. If i have to consult the guide each time to make sure i have formatted it 100% or i get flamed i will go elsewhere to somewhere more chilled.

If a post needs this much info maybe its time to look again at the structure of this forum as personally it doesnt work well for me.

If it was an official support desk then yes you need all that but not for a forum.

imho

crap how do i tag this reply..

James Barnett
James Barnett
39,199 Points

@Amit or @Andrew - Can we make this a featured post now?

I agree with Bill. While I think it's great to have tips for asking good questions, I think this is far too strict (dare I say obsessive) and it's unrealistic to expect everyone to adhere to these 'rules' precisely.

I suggest more relaxed tips such as...

  • Be specific
  • Post your code
  • etc.

I have a dumb question...I can't seem to figure out how to categorize my posting. There is only a spot for one category when I make a question. I see that people have multiple categories...so what am I missing?