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How to Use Stack Overflow

Stack Overflow is well known platform to learn, share and build apps for every coder. It’s a platform where one can get detailed answers, tips and tricks to fix any programming related issue. Let’s ask this- who doesn’t want to get a quick fix for an issue that is stopping them from coding faster or getting stuck with minor issues for long time? Stack Overflow is the solution for that.

Creating a Stack Overflow Account

Although one who doesn’t have to have a stack overflow account can read, answer, suggest edits. They can do it anonymously. But there are limitations. Hence, it’s better to create an account. The registration process is quite easy, once registered the user will avail options to ask new question, vote and can gain privilege by earning reputation.  The good part is if user has a registered account on any other site in stack overflow’s network with at least 200 reputation the user is eligible to receive +100 point reputation bonus on first login.
For creating a Stack Overflow account user can Sign Up through Google, Facebook or can create a new Stack Exchange account or can use an active emails id and password. Along with creating an account in SO, users will have Stack Exchange network profile. It is accessible from user’s page is accessible on any site of SO, wherever user has an account. For more details click here. Users can add their good bio providing relevant information like the technologies of interest, can gave a active participation by asking useful questions, providing replies, voting as per choice and many more. If user avails a  github, linkedin account, adding it to the SO account is a plus point as Stack Overflow is a good platform for developer’s jobs.
There’re plenty of ways to become a better Stack Overflow user. Below are some of the best practices:

Ask Questions

Ask question and you’ll get reply from others and one which helps you select it as “accepted. It’s important for the one who ask question should describe his / her issue in best way, so as others who face same issue and know the solution can provide the appropriate solution.
However, if the person who asked question accepts the first reply, it doesn’t mean that it’s the best answer, it just means that it worked for the person who asked. Also, others can keep on adding their solutions which worked for them. The best answer gets featured with the number of upvotes.
Questions should be related to any specific technology like coding issue, best way and quick techniques to run your code with less issue, best software development tools useful for framework etc.,
Questions section is categorized for user’s ease. The available categories are newest, featured, frequent, votes, active and unanswered. Get more details regarding Questions here.

Use Relevant Tags

It’s important to add relevant tags with questions asked. It helps to track that question easily in the relevant section. This practice helps get relevant solution and people with same queries will find it easily. Find the list of available tags here. Also, using the right tags makes it easier for others to find and answer your question.
There’s a section called “Tags Synonyms” which has collection of related tags and is categorized into different sections. Using tags saves a lot of time for every user and is easier to code and resolve issues. This contributes to quick fixes and sharing of solutions which is a time saver.

Improve Existing Questions and Answers

There is an option available to improve the existing posts by commenting and editing the reply. Question can be modified only by the one who asked.Stack Overflow is a platform that helps in learning, so why not help others and save their time as well. Provide quick and easy solution if known. If one observes that an existing question or answer can be replied in a better way they can edit it. To fix the mistakes, improve the format or clarify the meaning of post, edit option is always available. Comments can be used to clarify doubts regarding any question or answer if it’s hard to understand.

Build Reputation

One can comment on his / her own questions and answers. Once a user earns 50 reputations, he / she can add comment on others post as well. The best part of using Stack Overflow is that it’s a good platform for the ones who love to code and make their career in that and the same for experienced developers. Also, if you have good reputation in Stack Overflow by asking good questions and answering with appropriate reply and quick fixes, then you gain upvotes and will be eligible for unlocking badges from team Stack Overflow.

Stay Active and Get Badges

Badges are for special achievements. One can earn for participating on the site. Badges are available in 3 levels – bronze, silver, and gold. Also, there are several categories available in badge earning section. Details regarding badges is available here.
When someone asks any question and once the answering is started, the best working replies are voted up and as much upvote it gets it will rise to the top. The best suitable answers will automatically show up first which makes it quick and easy to find.

Earn Privileges

One can earn reputation based on asking questions, answering to the questions and editing the existing answers. Reputation shows the trust you can gain from the community. As soon as you start earning reputation you are eligible to unlock new privileges which allows you to upvote, downvote, comment and edit / modify others post. So, to gain more privilege it’s important to earn reputation. One can earn maximum of 200 reputations per day for the performed activities. More details available here.

Polish Your Coding Skills

No matter, since when one is coding, one needs to stay updated with the latest technologies and frameworks. It’s vital to adapt and learn latest technologies and brush up technical skills with updates. Stack Overflow is the best place to share your coding skills. In today’s competitive world it’s very important to keep improving your skills.

Conclusion

Stack Overflow can help you learn more, stay updated with the latest technology based updates and keeps you amidst an interactive and productive community. Also, you’ll get a good platform to showcase your technical skills which will help others solve their problems.
 

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