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My question was closed - not before I had some useful advice from some users - and been arrogantly dismissed. I cannot see the benefit of this site when it allows behaviour that discourages people asking questions. I am not interested in remaining a participant and will withdraw unless I receive a suitable explanation.

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My question was closed

The community voted to close your question with the reason

Add details and clarify the problem being solved. This will help others answer the question. You can edit the question.

This reason was chosen because your question was unclear. You were given the opportunity to edit your question to clarify it, but you chose not to do so.

I have quoted the original question below for the people who cannot see deleted questions and added some commentary on why I though it was unclear.

The laptop needs to be able to switch on devices when an email is received with the required parameters - ie which device, how long it should be on etc - all of which are contained in the email. Any email system could be used - gmail, outlook etc as the system has not been set up yet.

That is a statement of specification. So we kind of know what you want to do. Any solution is going to depend on which email system you choose to use - and you haven't decided that yet. We cannot make that decision for you.

I have thought about using a PLC and could easily code the solution but accessing emails appears to be an issue. SMS and electronic gate switches could be used but this involves SIM cards, contracts etc. The application generating the emails is in the USA and TWILIO could be used to to analyse the emails and generate SMS to the appropriate switch. That requires understanding TWILIO and some coding or cost to achieve.

Writing down your ideas does not make them into a question. It's a bit more specific what you are trying to achieve, but there is still no question in there we can answer. You say you need to understand TWILIO. So you should go and learn it. Note that asking for learning material would be off-topic.

We cannot do anything about the cost so why do you mention it?

I have done some VBA and HTML in the past - there are plenty of laptops/PCs available but using Windows or Linux?

Again what is your actual question? Note that asking us to do any coding for you is off-topic. We are not a programming site.

Summary

You wrote down a bunch of ideas which may have multiple different ways to be put into place. There was no real question.

From our help centre:

You should only ask practical, answerable questions based on actual problems that you face

Our site is

not about …

programming and software development,

asking for a product, service or learning material recommendation,

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I cannot see the benefit of this site when it allows behaviour that discourages people asking questions.

I am unsure what behavior you feel is discouraging asking questions here, but while clearly uncomfortable, it sounds uncommon.

My suspicion is that you may have asked an overly broad question ("How can I use email receipt to trigger Windows 10 processes?") and not filled in enough details. Super User has guidelines which moderators and other users try to apply to help keep questions answerable. Unfortunately for new users, it isn't always clear when these apply. Often, those questions get closed and potentially removed.

I had a similar experience when I first joined. I posted a question that was totally unsuitable (from a guidelines standpoint) and became extremely frustrated that my "reasonable" question needed multiple revisions and wasn't even asked where it should have been asked. However, many years later, I have found Super User to be a good resource for answers to many questions I have.

My suggestion to you might be to really think about your requirements and re-ask your question:

  • What online research (e.g. Google) have you done?

  • What experiments have you already attempted?

  • What were the results of your research or experiments? Were these results positive or negative in moving you closer to your goal(s)?

  • What email software are you using now?

  • Is there software (email or otherwise) that you would prefer to use? (e.g. Python is a scripting language that is multiplatform and supports email well, PowerShell is another scripting language but has fewer online features and is arguably aimed more at Windows).

  • Do you want these processes to run automatically? Instantly? On a delay?

  • Do you want to be notified a process has started, stopped or failed?

  • Is this a "GUI" or "command line" problem or solution? Are the computers running the process intended to be run without a GUI?

  • What are you actually trying to accomplish (you want to receive email A stating "start Process A" because you want Process A to ...???)

Obviously, the more details you fill in the better, but the specifics are ultimately up to you. However, please be aware that if someone can "answer" your question with "Have you tried Google?", the question may end up being closed again.

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  • To continue the response to David Posthill above: I note that you cannot do any coding for me - fine - but nether can you advise on programming and software development or even product or service recommendation - so I am at a loss. Anaksumanam, thanks, what you mention is really helpful - I have googled without any luck so I turned to this site. The email software is of no importance as it is a vehicle - except that what I wish to do cannot be done with the usual email software. Someone suggested an alternative - thank him/her for that. I thought the automatic part was explained. That was all.
    – Hansoff
    Dec 4 '21 at 13:22
  • I also thought that your last two bullitt points had been answered - automation means no GUI (except in initial set up but not in automatic running) - receive email A - start process A to 'switch on device' as I said in my edit. I did think that sharing experiences would allow suggestion of services that may achieve what is wanted to avoid 'reinventing the wheel' - maybe I was wrong.
    – Hansoff
    Dec 4 '21 at 13:26
  • Just as an FYI, both software recommendations (Software Recommendations) and "coding" (Stack Overflow) have their own dedicated Stack Exchange sites, which you should be able to use the same account for. Dec 4 '21 at 19:51
  • Regarding Super User, in practice, the community at Super User does sometimes make soft recommendations or provide necessary scripts, etc. but not in a vaccum. For instance, recommending email service A over email service B is likely pointless if both services support IMAP access but that isn't a relevant requirement to retrieve emails (ex. the system retrieving the emails only supports POP3). About the last two points, I can understand why these could have been considered answered. But personally I've found short questions tend to lead to quicker closures than oversharing details. Dec 4 '21 at 20:11
  • In any case, you're welcome and I hope you get enough information to set you on the right path. Dec 4 '21 at 20:13

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