I noticed this question was migrated out of UX yesterday:


It was a question about interviewing for a UX position and, IMHO, was a very interesting one to ask.

It seems that it was migrated because the assumption was that job interview questions don't belong on UX--though based on that logic, I don't know why they'd belong on WebMasters (especially since the question wasn't about applying for a webmaster position).

They seem to have agreed as they've now closed the question.

For future reference, what made that question inappropriate for UX?

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    I think it was a relevant question as well. @Vitaly might be able to explain his thinking. – Rahul Sep 1 '11 at 15:49
  • @Rahul - it isn't relevant to UX - it is a question about technology interview questions. It doesn't belong on webmasters either, however, because CSS and HTML are not things that webmasters do. – Charles Boyung Sep 1 '11 at 21:02
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    CSS and HTML are definitely things webmasters do. And are things many UX people do. – DA01 Sep 1 '11 at 21:09
  • @DA01 - no, webmasters do not do CSS and HTML. Webmasters manage websites, they do not write code. – Charles Boyung Sep 2 '11 at 3:19
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    @ Charles what webmasters do you know? Webmasters write code When I was a webmaster I wrote code, all my devs downstairs, webmasters, they write code. – colmcq Sep 2 '11 at 14:41
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    The webmaster at my company is the only person who touches the website, therefore he writes ALL the code. – Matt Rockwell Sep 2 '11 at 18:33
  • @colmcq - Developers and coders write code. Webmasters manage the sites themselves - setting them up on the servers, maintaining the servers, etc. Just because the people you call webmasters may write the HTML as well doesn't mean that that is part of the job of a webmaster. I modify images in Photoshop/GIMP all the time, that doesn't make me a graphic artist. – Charles Boyung Sep 3 '11 at 5:11
  • @Matt - my previous comment goes to you as well (apparently can't @ multiple people anymore in comments). – Charles Boyung Sep 3 '11 at 5:11
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    tell you what Charles, find me a webmaster who does not write code and I'll find you a unicorn. – colmcq Sep 5 '11 at 8:12
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    @Charles the webmasters I've known, and the job titles that I've had that included 'webmaster' all included writing and maintaining plenty of HTML, CSS and JS (and asp.net and php, etc.) There's no official board of job title descriptions in our industry. – DA01 Sep 5 '11 at 9:40
  • @colmcq - You better start looking then. I know plenty of webmasters that do not and have never written code. – Charles Boyung Sep 5 '11 at 14:36
  • @DA01 - still doesn't mean that a "webmaster" writes code as a part of their job. You can have multiple roles but still only have one title. It just means that your company doesn't see the value of having multiple people qualified for each individual position and think one person can do it all and do it all well, which is almost never the case in reality. – Charles Boyung Sep 5 '11 at 14:39
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    @charles You stated "Webmasters ... do not write code" Do you now accept this rather absolutist position to be false on the basis that many of us know webmasters "who write code". Maybe you would care to venture a figure as to what proportion of webmasters "write code" and what proportion do not? – colmcq Sep 5 '11 at 15:01
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    Charles, I have some serious doubts as to whether I'd ever even hire a webmaster who had never written any code. A webmaster who hasn't/can't strikes me as one who is missing some key skills even if it's not their daily business. – temptar Sep 5 '11 at 16:07
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    "Completely different things" well, I think most of us disagree with you on that one, Charles. It's not a huge deal, of course. It's just a vague job title in our industry which is, admittedly, flush with vague job titles. – DA01 Sep 6 '11 at 13:48

I thought that it should be migrated because it was focused purely on code. I have absolutely nothing against interview questions, as long as they're focused on UX.

@DA01 we've already touched on this topic once here :). Nowhere except for the web and, to a limited extent, mobile world are UX folk expected to know code, and I don't see it as part of the UX scope. Now, web UX guys do constitute a very large part of the field, and I'm definitely not trying to say that their opinion doesn't count or anything of the sort. Of course it counts. But fortunately there's a separate SE site for code-related questions, so those questions should go there (maybe I should've migrated it to SO and not to Webmasters). To me, that question was no different than if it had questions about Photoshop expertise: yes, graphic design is also a big part of UX, but it's not in its core, and there's a separate SE site for that.

As I mentioned in my comment there, the part that was definitely relevant to UX ("to what extent are UX people expected to know code") has no "right" answer.

  • Yes, I think migrating it to SO would have made more sense that WM (though that brings up the old issue that way too many SE sites overlap). I guess my take is that it was a question about applying for a UX position. I can't see how that'd fit any site better than UX. Maybe we decide CSS questions don't belong here, then close it, but it didn't seem like a question to pass off to other SE sites. (Personally, I think knowing what kind of code questions could come up in UX interviews is very on-topic, though) – DA01 Sep 1 '11 at 16:36
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    As for the "right" answer, I think that's been an ongoing topic as well. I know the SE founders really like the idea of there being 'one' answer to a question. I can appreciate that. But the fact is that a big part of UX is debating ALL the valid answers. As such, perhaps UX isn't a topic that fits into the SE philosophy. (I hope it stays, as I really like the SE UI, and I think open questions, to an extent, fit in quite nicely in terms of how discussions happen in here--even if they don't fit the philosophical policies). – DA01 Sep 1 '11 at 16:38
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    I don't see how CSS questions could not apply here unless it was a strictly technical question e.g. "How do I style this div." CSS is as important an element of UX for websites as an IDE is for programming. – Ben Brocka Sep 1 '11 at 16:44
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    @SirTapTap Well, that's where you and I differ :). See what I said above concerning Photoshop - would you accept the same question but with Photoshop instead of CSS? BTW, I'm not insisting that we close the question back. I made a judgement call to migrate it, and Rahul saw it fit to bring it back, which is fine by me, that's why there's a bunch of mods and not just one. BTW, I have no idea what IDE is :). – Vitaly Mijiritsky Sep 1 '11 at 18:22
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    IDE means integrated development environment (use Google!). Eg Eclipse, Visual Studio. Anyway, I think the point of the question is that Tara was asking how CSS relates to UX. That's an answerable, good question. You don't have to inject your opinion ("I think everyone should know CSS"), but you can write a post informing her of the various stances and addressing various concerns. That would help her and future visitors a lot. This is why I think it was a valid question. – Rahul Sep 1 '11 at 18:32
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    @Rahul Thanks, I'm fairly familiar with Google and I wasn't actually asking what IDE is :). More to the point, nowhere in the question was Tara asking how CSS relates to UX. She was asking about possible interview questions regarding CSS skills. That's a CSS question. I wasn't 100% sure about this, so I waited around to see some answers. The answers were almost entirely code-based, which is exactly why I migrated it. If she had asked how it relates to UX, it would've been a completely different question. – Vitaly Mijiritsky Sep 1 '11 at 18:48
  • "Potential questions on CSS for a UX designer interview" to me suggests a relationship between CSS and UX design, though. So I guess it's a matter of interpretation. – Rahul Sep 1 '11 at 18:52
  • I'm with @Vitaly. Because of its roots in Stack Overflow, this site is overrepresented by programmers. In order to attract more "civilians," I think we should maintain a slight bias against questions that relate to code. – Patrick McElhaney Sep 1 '11 at 19:35
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    It definitely should not have been migrated to webmasters.SE. SO isn't really appropriate because it isn't asking an actual question on how to do something. Probably the best place for it would have been programmers.SE. – Charles Boyung Sep 1 '11 at 21:04

I unmigrated it and reopened it to give it another shot, as I agree that it's unfortunate that it was closed. Let's try to help Tara to rewrite the question so it does meet our standards. If people want to close it again, go ahead and vote.

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