On Serverfault I saw the question "Invalidate Google Site Validation (Google Webmaster) [migrated]" and was disappointed to see that it redirects me to webmasters.stackexchange. (I was expecting the [migrated] note to indicate that this question had originally been asked on SO.)
A couple of days ago I ran into a MongoDB question that redirected me to db.stackexchange
Yet. Another. Stack Exchange Site.
Last year (well, 2010), when I discovered that there were both a Unix and Ubuntu sites, I felt some concern over the division of communities. (There may be other ones now that I don't know about.)
Having a separate Linux/Unix site for end-users than for server administration makes sense to me (such as with the Apple community site for end-users), but I hate separate sites per distro. (This seems like the defining use case for how and what Tags are for.) If I squint and cock my head, I can almost see a reason for a separate DB site. However, I cannot see a good reason to separate Web Administration from Server Administration.
A caveat: I like the ideas of many of the non-CompSci/IT sites. For instance, the Mathematics site, the Gaming site, and especially the Parenting site! These are completely disparate communities, and in my mind warrant their own sites. (Lest we just have a "Random BS" community site... Oh the Humanity!)
First, this division of communities creates confusion for those with Questions. 'Which site should I post to?' Where does a Drupal question go?!
Second, as someone who has some level of expertise in many of these areas, and want to help answer people's questions, this creates a whole lot of sites that I would now need to check. I enjoy the simplicity of checking SF when I have a moment, and have the opportunity to help in a wide variety of areas. I dislike the ideals having to troll many sites.
Third, (admittedly minor), this makes a mess out of peoples' reputations! At the moment, I have a higher SF rep than Jeff Atwood, but if I hadn't been around for awhile (say a week), I wouldn't realize that he runs/owns the site and has a SO rep somewhere around a billion. (I have a lot of respect for Jeff; even just on the surface of a Developer having that much insight into Servers and Ops is commendable.) That's just between SF and SO. Now add DBs, Webs, Unix, Ubuntu, WinXPx32, WinXPx64, Fedora, RHEL, CentOS, Server 2008 Standard, Server 2008 Core, Server 2008. What about Hardware?! We could split Rackmount vs Tower, HP vs Dell, Proliant DL360 series vs DL380 series... Do these all warrant their own communities?
No, this is what I think Tags are for.
Can someone either explain how this is a good idea? Failing a good explaination, could we stop the madness?