http://www.perlmonks.org?node_id=203003


in reply to The meaning of life, the universe and node reputation

Aristotle++. Thankyou for putting into words, something I have been wanting to say ever since seeing some of the replies to 202482, but couldn't word appropriately.

If I post a node, and it stays stubbornly at 0. Fine. Whatever I said was not very useful, possible only had meaning in the context of the thread etc. Not wrong nor bad or most important of all, not technically invalid. Just nothing worthy of anyones vote. That's fine.

As you said, if it gathers some ++'s great. The effort expended was worth it. A few someone's found it interesting or useful.

But when a post, especially one that has taken some effort, and contains (as 202437 does), a working solution, and embedded proof that it does work (at least under some circumstances) and it starts gathering --'s, I go back and check:

  1. Does it contain factual errors?
  2. Does it contain something blatently rude, condesending or facecious?
  3. Did I misread the OP's needs or answer the wrong question?

If so, I usually try and correct my errors or admit to my mistakes by striking (in deference to the unwritten "don't change history" rule, despite the fact that I disagree vehemently with both the sentiment and the reasoning) whatever was wrong and correcting or apologising.

The reason why I chose to withdraw a post entirely, was if working code is somehow wrong, then it must be because it is dangerous or misleading, in which case, allowing it to perpetuate is a 'bad thing', and so I didn't. Instead, I chose to attempt to come up with a better solution.

That I lost a few XP, Bah, Humbug! Simply makes up for some of my other posts that have gathered a positive rep dis-proportionate to the effort I put in like this where all I did was give a pointer something I had recently read or had bookmarked. Or this where I was simply the first to notice something glaringly obvious. Or this that represents the simple 10 second cut&paste of readily available information. It rankles slightly that these get ++'d when other nodes containing (what I believe to be) good Perl, which I've put considerable effort into, go by hardly noticed, but you quickly get used to the fact that such are the fickle mannerisms of the Monastery.


Cor! Like yer ring! ... HALO dammit! ... 'Ave it yer way! Hal-lo, Mister la-de-da. ... Like yer ring!

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Re^2: The meaning of life, the universe and node repurtation
by Aristotle (Chancellor) on Oct 05, 2002 at 13:09 UTC

    I know what you mean about unexpectedly disproportionate amount of votes - my second highest rep node is one of the quickest replies I wrote to date. I was surprised to log in next day and see I had gotten a boatload of XP - and even more surprised when I found out where they came from.

    The "stubbornly remaining at 0" phenomenon is one I've occasionally grumbled about too.

    But I disagree about the reaction to downvotes to what seems to me to be a good reply. In that case, I update the node with a remark to the effect of "I've gotten a couple of downvotes here. Would anyone please care to explain to me what about my writeup was out of line or incorrect?". If noone speaks up, I leave it at that and consider myself confirmed that I just stepped on a few cargo cultist toes by going against the party line. If someone does reply and gives a good explanation, all the better - I've learned something, and others who read my node can reach the same conclusions about why they shouldn't do it the way I did. If there really is a very compelling reason, I will <strike> my post and point people at the reply, so that a bad meme doesn't get perpetuated. That's what I understand as the sentiment behind the "don't rewrite history" principle: if you make mistakes, you and others can learn from it.

    Granted, updating with an explanation request only really works so long as the thread is alive.

    Makeshifts last the longest.

      But, I really love your second highest rep node. As the person who asked the question said in response, it was a very clear explication of a technique that, for many, is mysterious.

      Simple explanations that makes things clear is among the highest ideals we can aspire to in the Monastery, in my opinion.

      Now, you can argue that it may be more or less deserving than some other nodes, sure, and I think this is your point. Individual reputations of nodes is not a ranking.

        Turn my words against me, will ya? :-) You're right, that's a good way to look at it.

        Makeshifts last the longest.