Using OS tags for questions to distinguish whether a software

  • should be available on all named platforms (for a inter-platform usecase) or
  • should be available on just any platform

seems difficult. Furthermore browsing or search queries like

[windows] hasaccepted:yes

may not bring up the answers one is looking for. So, do we have / need a rule for the usage multiple platform tags. Possibilities:

  • AND interpretation
  • OR interpretation
  • introduction of another tag to distiguish
  • discourage

There is a tag, which I think should be encouraged for questions about software that needs to work on more than one platform (surely on more than two).

  • I don't like cross-platform because it's too vague. Does it mean “must run on Android, iOS and Windows/ARM”? Or “must run on Linux, OSX and Windows/PC”? – Gilles 'SO- stop being evil' Feb 12 '14 at 14:35
  • 2
    @Gilles: I don't think any reasonable number of tags can discriminate all those distinctions. So we expect to find the finer requirements stated in the Question, with tags that are chosen for improved search. Cross-platform is for software that needs to run on multiple platforms (an AND requirement), in the OP's term. – hardmath Feb 12 '14 at 15:40
  • But what's the point of a tag that doesn't have a consistent meaning? Who's going to subscribe or ignore cross-platform? How useful would it be in a search, since you'd also have to search for the platforms you're interested in anyway? – Gilles 'SO- stop being evil' Feb 12 '14 at 16:25
  • @Gilles its very useful if you search on something that has to run on "all machines in my company" so you are looking for solutions that work on at least two platforms. – Angelo Fuchs Feb 12 '14 at 18:39
  • @AngeloNeuschitzer What's the point if I'm looking for something that runs on Linux and Windows but the tag also points to things that run on Android and iOS? I'll be searching for “Linux” and “Windows” anyway. – Gilles 'SO- stop being evil' Feb 12 '14 at 18:46
  • @Gilles No. Because the OSs that have been requested could have been "osx" and "windows" and thous you won't find it with "linux" AND "windows". Or you use the system that will be the new fad in 2 years and look for programs that are "cross-platform" because the chance that they support $new_system are higher than any single plattform system. Or you don't know which systems it must support (because your company has a "bring your own device" policy) and are looking for solutions that support the most platforms. (I can continue this list, shall I?) – Angelo Fuchs Feb 12 '14 at 20:21
  • Lots of programs are described as “cross-platform” even though they don't run on any of the “new fad” systems. Like, say, Flash, which doesn't even run on several of today's most popular platforms and yet is described as cross-platform. – Gilles 'SO- stop being evil' Feb 12 '14 at 20:31

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