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Q&A Forum - New Question & Answer Feature

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Q&A Forum - New Question & Answer Feature magazine cover

A quick introduction to the latest Soul Source feature...

The new Question and Answer Forum.

Just launched here on Soul Source and while at first look it may appear very similar to the normal forums, there are major differences as this feature is set up to deal more with 'question and answers' rather than the normal discussion.

The layout of this feature is designed so members can ask questions' and then once answered they can then rate and/or flag the other members answers. This rating and flagging will ensure that the 'best' answers are in most cases highly visible to other members.

Q&A Forum View

When you enter the forum, instead of the normal topic listing, you see a list of questions:

You'll see here that questions that have a best answer are indicated with a green checkbox. You'll also notice that one of the stats on the right hand side is 'votes'. In Q&A forums, questions can be voted up or down by users, in order to give them more visibility. More popular questions will bubble to the top (depending on the age of the question). You can of course still order by more traditional methods, if you wish.

Popular questions from the past 30 days are also highlighted at the top of the forum, providing an up-to-date 'knowledgebase' that other users can see.  someone asked a question about an important feature and it was voted highly, other users visiting the forum would see it right at the top, which is great for content visibility and helping users get the answers they're looking for with minimal fuss.

Question View

Clicking into a question shows an adjusted topic view:

The question (i.e. the first post) is shown at the top of the page on all pages, with answers listed below. You'll see that replies can also be voted up and down - in fact, this determines the order in which answers are shown inside the question. Popular answers, as determined by the community, will appear at the top, with worse or incorrect answers being pushed down. This is great for quickly finding the best information for the question at hand; in IP.Board 3.x, all too often a high-quality answer will appear in the middle of a topic and unfortunately go unnoticed by the topic creator or others looking for an answer. You can still sort answers by date, if you prefer.

In the Q&A forum you can also see the first post is marked as the best answer. "Best Answer" always appears at the top, regardless of its vote count.

Question/answer ratings are separate from reputation, so you can  still "REp" posts even if you don't think they're a good answer to the question.

article edited sept 2016 as forum removed as didnt go well


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