I've fallen for this myself, but have recently noticed a few others doing so and wondered what people thought...

When a newbie asks a question, is it always best to answer with the most efficient code? I don't think so myself. I think it's important to help them gain the building blocks of 'baby code' needed to help them understand the answer and not just know the answer.

I think we should try to remember some basic rules when answering a newby question:

The temptation is always there to show how much you know (and yes, I'm guilty of answering some questions from that perspective), but what we should be trying to do is answer questions so that we help increase their knowledge.

A while ago I suggested we had a node for 'newbie questions'. I think this would be good, because it could have the specific rule that the answer is explained properly as well as answered properly. Eg,

-- for:

$string =~ s/\s+/ /g;

++ for

# replace all multiple whitespace characters from $string # \s represents a whitespace character (space, tab, newline etc) # + means 'one or more' $string =~ s/\s+/ /g;

ie, this section would encourage you to -- answers that answered the question but didn't really help the questioner.

Well, that's my .02. What do you think?

cLive ;-)