I feel that this question was closed too hastily by a moderator as being too broad.

I realize that this site is in beta and the moderators want to keep a fairly tight rein on how the site develops. But part of that development involves the growth of an active group of community reviewers, and you need to be willing to let that happen.

In this particular case, I feel that it's very much a judgement call. While the overall topic is quite broad, the actual questions asked could be answered fairly succinctly, and the answers would make good material for the site.

I'm just saying that this question could have been left open for at least a day or two, to see what the community thought about it. Moderation doesn't need to be that heavy-handed.


2 Answers 2


Thanks for bringing this to meta. Personally, I think that that question should have been closed because, like this question of mine, it's asking about too many things. I don't feel very comfortable picking apart somebody else's question, so I'll pick apart my own.

  • My question has a very general title: "How did debuggers work?" Whilst it initially seems as though this is quite a narrow question, akin to "How was Feature X implemented?", it's a much broader topic than that.
  • It contains several sub-questions that would more reasonably be asked in entirely separate questions. Some of these would even be too broad, and have to be split into sub-sub-questions. Answers to all of these sub-questions are required to be able to understand the main question; an answer explaining all of these might not even fit in the post limit.
  • Knowledge in the subject area is required to realise how broad it is; the more you know, the broader it appears. Each time I look back at that question, I see it as more unanswerable. It's like the question "How do I program?" in that regard.

These points can be applied to the question you're asking about. However, like my question, some of the sub-questions could well be well-received.

The solution to your title issue is for our empowered community reviewers to check the review queues more often. There are some active reviewers, but five votes are required to close a question and this often has to be done within hours of the question being posted to prevent answers, whereupon changes to the question will invalidate answers, as well as contributing to the broken windows effect. We try to close questions only when it's clear that they're close-worthy, but it's easier to "close first, re-open later" than it is to deal with answered, off-topic questions.


As I was the one to close the question, I feel I should add to the answer already given by @wizzwizz4. An answer with which I agree.

My first response on seeing the question was to suggest that it was broad and could be improved. At first glance it is a question about programming a microcontroller to emulate or study an retro system. A topic covered in meta here and here before.

There were three real questions. Firstly, Can I use a microcontroller to study CP/M?, answer yes. Secondly, What did CP/M use its memory for?, a valid question which you have attempted to answer in comments to the question. Thirdly, Was there an OS with 8kb memory and a reasonable UI?, unclear as "reasonable" is in the eye of the beholder. Three questions in a question post is too broad.

I did not immediately close the question, leaving it open to see if the poster would edit it. After a while, the question picked up flags from the community as being off-topic. It is then that I closed it - without the flags I would have given it a little longer. Although, of course, it may still be edited.

I would like to see the question reworded and refined, perhaps turned into more than one question. It would well make an excellent question for our site. If a question is edited, it automatically goes into a reopen queue. The community will then vote upon it for reopening.

I hope this question is reborn in some form or another. And, yes, this is a valid thing to raise on Meta. Thank you for doing so.

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