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Answers On The Internet

Created by dave. Last edited by dave, 13 years and 172 days ago. Viewed 2,942 times. #2
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Finding Answers On The Internet

(17 January 2007)

So back a while ago I was poking around on looking for some information. And as is my habit, I poke around while there seeing if there are any threads that I can add value to. Usually I find nothing that I can quickly answer and so I move on, but on this day I found >>this thread on snmp gathering dust.

So I added my thirty seconds of information, and moved on.

It turns out that someone else was looking at the recently-changed articles and saw my edit, and noted that the thread in question was over a year old. I sure hope he wasn't still waiting around for an answer this long! was his joking commentary.

The thing of it is, it wasn't the point to answer his question. The point was to answer that question.

The problem is that the internet, and therefore google, is polluted with websites, mailing lists, usenet news groups, all with people plaintively asking questions as to how to do something or how to figure out why something else isn't working as expected. And the vast, vast, vast majority of those postings, comments, list or usenet article threads begin and end with that question.

And one is left wondering: was there no answer? Did the questioner never find the information they were seeking? Did they give up?

It makes finding information through google very difficult at times.

But now, thanks to my efforts, there is one thread, one more google hit, that has an answer and not just a question.

So I replied back to the thread saying as much.

And not ten hours later, I get this in my inbox:

Subject: thanks for your post to
Date: Tue, 16 Jan 2007 15:42:34 -0800
From: "Nelson Sproul"
To: feedback at

You were right - even though the original thread was old, your answer was exactly what I was looking for.

Thank you!

See, if this Internet thingy is going to be of any use to any of us, we have to follow through. If you see a question you can answer, answer it. If you ask a question and get an answer somewhere else, answer your own question.

The information on the information superhighway comes from us.

(Originally posted 17 January 2007)

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