My team and I recently moved our old web-based bug tracking system to a visual criticality matrix (a 2-meter high wall). I wanted to ask the community about other visual bug tracking tools, with advantages and disadvantages, but I realized that this kind of question is more a discussion than a real question.

In fact I don't have a real problem, I don't really need an answer since our implementation fits our needs pretty well. Nevertheless I thought that it would be interesting that members of our community expose their way of visualizing bugs, if any, with benefits and drawbacks they found using it.

I really think that this kind of question could help someone looking for examples of xyz

How should we ask such a question?

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3 Answers 3

Different ways of visualizing bugs, per se, is not a project management question. A better fit would be something along the lines of a question on how team members can improve their contribution to raising overall software quality, or increasing participation in the bug fixing process. Make sure to point out the constraints and goals of whatever it is you are trying to accomplish.

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You are right about my question. How about this kind of question in general? –  Matthias Jouan Dec 2 '12 at 8:16
    
What Kind of question do you mean, when you ask about "this kind of question in general?" –  Mark Phillips Dec 2 '12 at 16:21
    
when somebody already has a solution to his problem but wants other people to expose their own solution so that we end up with a list of potential solutions with pros and cons. –  Matthias Jouan Dec 2 '12 at 17:01
    
That kind of question should be fine. But the issue is that this is not a site for comparing ways to visualize bugs. It is about project management. –  Mark Phillips Dec 2 '12 at 17:07
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Chat

One feature we have on PMSE, that we try to promote, is our Project Management Chat Room. Chat, unlike the Q&A portion of the site, can be used to talk about anything you want.

Consider dropping your question in chat. This meta discussion will hopefully serve as a bit of a promotional piece for your question, and maybe a few community members will jump in and join the discussion. However, most of the chats I've had with people weren't necessarily "active" chats. For instance, many times Zsolt asks a question at midnight, and I answer it at noon. ;) This is okay. Chat doesn't have to be real time, and any activity in the chat room is positive. The more people who participate, the more "active" and real-time this chat can become.

Th advantage of chat is that conversations can lead to deeper questions, ones that expose a real problem you're facing that would make a great Q&A piece, so in the end, what transpires in chat may very well end up on the site in some other form.

Think about the real problem you're facing

We strive for this site to be the final destination for getting answers to questions. We have a great community of project managers who, when asked a question about a problem, can give a great solution.

So, think about why advantages/disadvantages is important to you. What problem does this solve for you? Most likely, there are others facing your problem who would be helped by the resulting Q&A piece, if exposed.

Maybe there's more than one problem, which means maybe you have more than one question. :)

If there is no problem, and you're merely curious, then I'm not sure the question would work out. Some of the tool advantages questions still exist on our site, and the spam they attract lowers the quality/attractiveness of the site.

With that said, I hope this helps you tailor your question to our site (or to help drive interest in our chat room). If you need more clarification or guidance, please let us know. Thank you for participating in our meta! :)

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Thank you for answering my question. I will edit my question to try and give some details about my intention when asking the question I wanted to ask. –  Matthias Jouan Dec 1 '12 at 19:20
    
About the chat the problem is that it is not the place where a googler would want to find answers. The chat format is not really adapted to the gathering of examples of foobar –  Matthias Jouan Dec 1 '12 at 19:38
    
Chat is more for extended discussion. It's both a community center as well as a place to hash out the details on questions that aren't in question and answer format..... I also have to ask. What's your goal here? Are you hoping to promote/improve your product? If so, this site might not be the right place for that, unless of course you can find a way to present it in question/answer format as we discussed here. Hope this helps. –  jmort253 Dec 1 '12 at 19:44
    
Also, we have a pretty friendly community here that loves to try and help, so if you post something on the main site, we'll first try to help you tailor it. :) We'll only close it if you vanish (aren't here to help edit it), or if we can't make the question fit ourselves. If we close it, it's just to prevent low quality answers while we work with you to make it fit. Closure isn't permanent, and closed questions can be edited and reopened. :) –  jmort253 Dec 1 '12 at 19:46
    
Your remark about promoting a product is somewhat surprising. I don't quite see how you can think of that and what product you might possibly be talking about. Anyway thank you for your help. I'll try to post my question as well-formatted as possible, using the Q&A style I talked about here. –  Matthias Jouan Dec 1 '12 at 20:41
    
@MatthiasJouan - Okay, I assumed there was a product but now have read your blog article. I must say I like the matrix idea for visualizing bugs and the strategy you use to prioritize them. It's simple, not overly complex, yet also paints an easy-to-see snapshot of what kinds of bugs you're dealing with. Looking forward to your question. :) –  jmort253 Dec 1 '12 at 20:49
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sorry for complaining. I did not understand that one might think I was selling a software bug tracking system or something like that. Thank you again for helping me, and for your continuous effort to improve this site by the way –  Matthias Jouan Dec 1 '12 at 20:55
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Maybe I could ask the question without mentioning my own experience, with something like "How to improve and facilitate bug prioritization?" and then answer to myself exposing our implementation...but there still would not be one "good" answer

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Actually, this is a great idea. If you can present it as a problem you're facing, which it sounds like at one time in your past visualizing bugs was in fact a problem for you, then the question would fit the Q&A format much better. However, I think you should still mention your experience, but only the part about having the problem. ;) There is likely more than one answer here, but if the question gets people to explain why one is better than the other instead of just building a list, then the material would be more useful to people looking for answers. Good luck! :) –  jmort253 Dec 1 '12 at 19:36
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Hi Matthias, check out this SE blog article, It's Ok to Ask and Answer Your Own Questions. Also, another word of caution, be sure to include in your answer that you're affiliated with a product if you mention one that you're involved in. :) –  jmort253 Dec 1 '12 at 19:38
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