This is just a general esthetic question.
In a random question, I recommended somebody to come up with a better name than user57892 or whatever generic automatically generated name that was, and they basically told me to piss off as they contribute the content without the need to come up even with an approximate name like StatGuruJoe. I mulled over this for a little while, and while I recognize there may be no SE policy on this, there are at least two issues that bother me:
- I went into enough trouble to come up with my user name and fill the tiny bio; if this guy hasn't, why should I go into the trouble answering his question?
- If you believe in the infinite monkey theorem, then this guy looks like the 57892th monkey typing randomly on the keyboard. I guess the statistical application would be that a monkey typing at random will at some point provide SAS/R/Stata code for a rigorous analysis of any existing data set, and type up all of the answers to the CV questions. So, again, why should I bother?
Following up on RioRaider's question about relation between the question length and the likelihood of a good answer, there's apparently a relation between a user's reputation and how human-readable their names are. It only takes a mouseover + right click to Google more about Michael Chernick, Peter Flom or Jeromy Anglim; whuber or StasK may require a little bit more digging, and frankly I've been somewhat frustrated at being unable to match the name and face regarding Macro and cardinal.
May be I am growing older. When I was in college, I was fine referring to my friends using their FIDO aliases (if anybody still remembers this offline message exchange network), where mine was something like 2:5020/486.41, as in, "Have you met 2:5020/317.1? He really is a fine guy."