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Quora

Quora What is Quora? It's maybe a question that can be best answered on Quora itself. Quora is a question-and-answer website created, edited and organized by its community of users. It was founded in June 2009, and the website was made available to public on June 21, 2010. Quora aggregates questions and answers to topics. Users can collaborate by editing questions and suggesting edits to other users' answers. Quora's main competitors are social bookmarking sites like reddit, social network sites like ChaCha, and numerous question and answer websites.

How to use Quora?

Creating an account is easy. You can do so using your Twitter or Facebook accounts and both options set you up to automatically follow the people you already know from those sites. Once you have an account, you can ask and answer questions, suggest edits to previously given answers, vote up or down answers, follow other users and more.

Quora requires users to register with their real names rather than screen name. Quora users may also link/log-in their Quora accounts with their Google, Twitter or Facebook accounts. Quora users can upvote or downvote answers. They can also suggest edits to existing answers provided by others. Quora community includes some well-known people, such as Steve Case, Marc Andreesen, Dustin Moskovitz, Justin Trudeau and Ashton Kutcher. The largest group of Quora users is located in Silicon Valley, followed by New York City. 30% of its users are from India as of August 2013.



It's important to point out that questions and answers must be asked and answered under your real name. The belief is that attaching your actual persona to your activity on the site will ultimately increase the quality through accountability.
Quora uses Pylons and Comet for its backend and Ubuntu Linux as its operating system with MySQL as its database. It also uses Git and memcached. Quora uses Nginx as a reverse proxy server and HAProxy for load balancing. Quora has developed its own algorithm for ranking answers, which works similar to PageRank. Quora uses Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud technology to host the servers that run its website. In August 2011, Quora switched its infrastructure's Python implementation from CPython to PyPy, in order to improve response time.

Why Quora is unique?

Is Quora any different from a site like Yahoo Answers or Answers.com? Yes and no. The questions tend to be based less on facts and more on the personal take of the users answering the questions. Also, the service benefits from a more exclusive user base who feel responsible for the overall experience on the site. That certainly has the potential to change as it becomes more and more popular. The site also has an elaborate set of guidelines that can protect the intregity of the site while perhaps confusing some new users.
  1. Quora vs Reddit


    Quora is divided into communities that contain authorities on specific subjects, thus generating more detailed and elaborate answers. On the other hand, AskReddit is by itself a community/subreddit with a more general group of contributors and audiences.

    That said, the content on the front page of Quora is more diverse and distributed in terms of attention each individual question receives, whereas on Reddit, content is driven by the karma reward system, thereby promoting only the most funny, relatable or entertaining posts and comments. In other words, Quora is less for humor and more for seeking out intellectual throughput, whereas AskReddit is a broader hub where people from all subcultures and interests come together to have a good time.
  2. Quora vs Stack Overflow


    Well, just as a single datapoint, I used to waste a lot of time trying to answer questions and get points on Stack Overflow, as kind of an entertaining game. Then I got into Quora and found that satisfied the same thing, but in a way I found more enjoyable. So, in that sense, Quora has hurt Stack Overflow just a tiny bit, by taking away most of my own input.

    I don't like two things about answering questions on Stack Overflow:
    1. The way you have to be fast to beat other people to the answer (that is, no point answering a question three months later, since the "best answer" has already been selected)
    2. The moderation crew at Stack Overflow is too quick to rule out questions that have subjective answers.

    Quora's approach is much friendlier to latecomers and those who like to express opinions. In my opinion it could, in theory, take over much if not all of Stack Overflow's market if enough people preferred that approach. There is nothing about Quora that would prevent it from being useful for more straightforward programming questions, where Stack Overflow is currently the leader. So, while the two may not be directly competitive, they do have a lot of overlap. Especially when you include all the other things on the Stack Exchange network, which are more "subjective discussion friendly."

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