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There are actually quite a lot of unanswered questions on UX StackExchange, and I was wondering whether trying to get a feel of why the questions are not answered can provide a way to improve the site and help to either clean up those questions or help get answers to them. Not having looked through them all, my feeling is that they fall between the categories of:

  • Not noticed due to wording or tagging, but can be improved by editing
  • Not asked in a way that is easy to provide an answer for, or not appropriate for the site but not picked up on
  • No one really knows the answer, as it is a more theoretical rather than practical question
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    Ironically this doesn't have an answer yet. – Wander Jan 21 '15 at 16:14
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I've been noticing some patterns in which you can predict the number of answers provided based on the type of question that's been asked. Basically anything that's "hard to answer" tends to be unanswered. This is really unfortunate because some of these are gems.

Here are two types I find are legit UX questions with poor answer rates.

Questions with complexity e.g. Best visualization for combinations

The more complex the question (anything that requires you to "think" to come up with a solution), the least likely it is to be answered.

Questions requesting for research-based evidence e.g. Compare engagement of different push mediums

These tend to be good questions, but it doesn't seem like there's many well-known publicly available research results. I personally would pass and not dig for evidence if nothing immediately comes to mind.

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    It is interesting that many of the famous questions seem to be ones that can be answered by a lot of research, literature and opinions, while the legit UX questions that are difficult or makes us think a little bit more doesn't attract the same kind of attention. I guess that's what the bounty feature is supposed to encourage, but I don't think it is being used enough. Perhaps something for moderators to think about? – Michael Lai Jan 27 '15 at 21:59

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