EDIT (9/7): Public beta is now open! Thanks to everyone who helped out!
EDIT (8/30): The site has launched, and is now in the "private beta" phase, which lasts one week. It will be open to the public on September 6th. You can see the site right now by going to http://bitcoin.stackexchange.com/
EDIT (8/20): "This proposal has reached 100% commitment. We are preparing for its launch and expect to create it soon." Thanks everyone! Once the Stack Exchange staff set up the site, there will be a one-week private beta with those that are currently signed up, after which it will be open to the public.
If you want Bitcoin to have a better user support site than these forums, please join the Bitcoin Stack Exchange
For those who aren't familiar with it, Stack Exchange is a network of question & answer sites, the most well-known of which is stackoverflow.com. The sites feature a reddit-style reputation system, with high-rep users being granted moderation abilities. Acceptable and unacceptable topics are also defined in advance for each site. The Bitcoin SE will be strictly for technical and conceptual questions, not for politics or philosophy. This should nip trolling and general nonsense in the bud, leaving us with a clean and professional site.
At the time of this writing, we need 71 more people to launch the site, 48 of which need to be established Stack Exchange users. We've been growing steadily, and should launch around the end of August at this rate. I'd like to see it happen sooner, so please join up!
We've been getting a lot of people signing up, which is good. Unfortunately, we're lagging behind on established, high-reputation Stack Exchange users. In the 4 days since this thread was started, we've gained 21 users, but only 4 of them have 200+ reputation on another Stack Exchange site (3 if you don't count me getting my rep score above 200 during that time). We need 100 users with 200+ reputation; we're currently at 56.
For those of you who've already signed up, or are just signing up now, please consider participating in one of the existing Stack Exchange sites and building up your reputation
. Getting a score of 200 isn't too difficult, it just takes patience.
Each upvote on a question that you ask is worth 5 points. Upvotes on your answers are worth 10 points. Getting your answer accepted as "the answer" by the person who asked the question is worth 15 points. Answers tend to get upvoted more often than questions, so it's easier to gain reputation from answering questions than from asking them. Make sure to upvote the questions that you post answers for; it helps those questions get more attention, which means more upvotes for your answer.
Stack Overflow is the most popular of the SE sites, so the pacing tends to be a bit frantic. Questions will tend to get answered while you're still typing your answer. If this is a problem for you, consider going with one of the other SE sites instead (I went with Super User). However, keep in mind that you don't need to be first to answer, you just need to contribute useful information that hasn't been presented yet.
Each tag on an SE site has its own RSS feed. For example Super User has a bitcoin tag
, and here's its RSS feed
, found at the bottom of the page. Watching specific tags that you're interested in is a good way to find questions to answer.
Make sure your account on Area51 (the new site staging area, where the Bitcoin proposal is located) is linked with your other SE accounts, so that your reputation score gets counted.