I've looked at the tags, but it's still hard to tell what questions will get the most value.

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    If you keep changing your question, we'll have a hard time giving you an appropriate answer. – EEAA Oct 22 '10 at 21:29
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    No problem - it was just hard to follow the rapidly-moving target there. :) – EEAA Oct 22 '10 at 21:34
  • It sounds like you are intending to ask questions for the sole purpose of getting upvates, rather than looking for real answers to real problems. Others may disagree but I find that objectionable. – John Gardeniers Oct 24 '10 at 21:14
  • @John Gardeniers: To look for "real answers to real problems" you have to know where to look, sounds to me like reading into the question in a way that has more to do with you, than I. I don't care about rep points, and if I did I would not get them by asking question... really, please apply some form of logic if you're going to be objectionable. – blunders Oct 24 '10 at 22:09

First: don't delete questions that are posted in the wrong place. If the community deems them significantly enough off-topic, they'll be voted as such and automatically moved to the appropriate place.

Now, for your answer. The best thing you can do is to read, understand, and adhere to the recommendations on the SE how to ask page. The FAQ page also has a lot of good information.

When I go to answer a question, I look for two things when determining how much effort to dedicate: first, did this person do their homework. What evidence did they give to support the fact that they're just not looking to be spoon-fed. Second, do they have an open mind. In many cases, answers given aren't exactly what the OP is hoping for. Will this person be accepting of an answer like this? If the answer to either of these is "no", then my chances of putting more then a minute or two into an answer is pretty slim.

I've looked at the tags, but it's still hard to tell what questions will get the most value.

Tags have very little to do with whether or not questions will get a good answer. Sure, they're nice for organizational purposes, but the question's content and the thought that went into it are the main things that will play into the answers' quality.

  • ErikA: I delete questions, if it appears I've doing the wrong thing. If a question gets to mean off-topic answers, I have no control over deleting it. – blunders Oct 22 '10 at 21:25
  • @ErikA: Main focus of the question is understanding what knowledge is in the community. I'll remove the other questions, since that's really not the same topic. – blunders Oct 22 '10 at 21:26
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    @blunders - Sure, you did the wrong thing by posting an off-topic question, but there are mechanisms in place (migration) to deal with this. By deleting your question, you also delete any answers and comments people have posted, which can be quite frustrating. – EEAA Oct 22 '10 at 21:27
  • @ErikA: Yes, I agree about all your points. Thank you! – blunders Oct 22 '10 at 21:29
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    Huh. Learn by reading? It sounds like madness, but it just may be genius! <wink /> – gWaldo Oct 27 '10 at 12:27
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    And don't sweat the occasional downvote, question migration, or even harsh comment. The vocal minority is sometimes just in a crabby mood, but 99.9% of the community are unbothered by your initial missteps. Otherwise you'll know, because you'll hear from a mod. ;) – Kara Marfia Oct 27 '10 at 14:07

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