I wanted to share a lesson I learned early in my career (for context, I'm a seasoned developer). On mailing lists in most companies, when people ask for specific advice, what ensues is typically a long cascade of people challenging the premise: why would you do that? Why would you do it that way? Have you heard of this cool open source project? I'm working on something really cool that's better than that thing you're using... and as often as not, after a cascade of dozens of such emails, no one will have answered the actual, specific question that was asked. This can be frustrating to the competent, talented people who know what they're doing and really just want to unblock their progress.
My guidance to all of the engineers I have mentored through the years is simply this: "first answer the question; only then explore the space." Providing a direct answer to the question asked is the cost of entry; if you can't answer the question, you should wait to respond - even if the premise of the question seems flawed.
I'd like to propose this as a guideline for the community. There are so many ways to achieve anything in this environment, and so many other interrelated concerns, that if we start by specifically and directly answering the question and only then broaden the context, I think we will create a better learning environment for ourselves.
Answer the question; then propose alternatives. In my experience, it really does improve the dialogue.