[Numpy-discussion] Please stop bottom posting!!

Chris Barker - NOAA Federal chris.barker at noaa.gov
Fri Apr 12 12:01:56 EDT 2013

On Fri, Apr 12, 2013 at 7:34 AM, Derek Homeier
<derek at astro.physik.uni-goettingen.de> wrote:

> In German this kind of faux pas is usually labelled "TOFU" for "text on top, full quote underneath",
> and I think it has been a bit overlooked so far that the "full quote" part probably is the bigger problem.

Exactly -- my original title "stop bottom posting" was a lame attempt
to be a bit ironically humorous..

> IOW a call to try and trim the OP more rigourously should help a lot, and I'd think most people then
> can agree on bottom posting

Though I'd still argue that I'd prefer top posting to bottom posting
in the situation of a small comment added to a big thread.

gmail is pretty good at hiding the old stuff, so it's getting less
annoying, but when i go to add a comment  myself,  and find this huge
pile of old junk to sort through and delete -- it's really annoying.

> ...the issue with mail clients doing that automatically - the thread
> in question looks quite readable in Mountain Lion's Mail.app, but a nightmare on Snow Leopard!).

Exactly -- email clients are maybe getting too smart for us -- if it
looks good in yours, it may not look good in mine.

Interesting that this note itself had not a lot, but still too much,
worthless junk left over from the previous post...

Maybe we need a short-hand for "clean up the previous parts of the
thread to show only what you need to make your post relevant and

Paul Ivanof wrote:
> ... But I just came across a wonderfully short signature from
> Rick Moen, and thought I'd pass it along:

> Cheers,             A: Yes.
> Rick Moen           > Q: Are you sure?
> rick at linuxmafia     >> A: Because it reverses the logical flow of conversation.
> .com McQ! (4x80)    >>> Q: Why is top posting frowned upon?

This is cute, and makes a good point, but misses the bigger issue:
most interesting technical threads are not a series of linear, simple
one-liners. Bottom posting is obviously the way to go for that. They
are long, with multiple points, and comments on the middle parts, not
just the end, and different people all commenting on the same post. It
simply does not end up a neat linear conversation anyway. niether pure
bottom posting nor pure top posting works well.



Christopher Barker, Ph.D.

Emergency Response Division
NOAA/NOS/OR&R            (206) 526-6959   voice
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Chris.Barker at noaa.gov

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