The question in question: How much faster is a 64-bit CPU than a 32-bit CPU? [closed]

I was recently trying to find a past answer of mine which detailed word-length and performance penalties, which included some very good information (obviously biased, as I wrote it).

I understand that the question was not constructive, and thus closed - but I feel that it provided a significant amount of information to the Super User community (not to mention the other sites that steal Super User questions and answers, like this one - click if you can't view deleted questions).

Would it be worth un-deleting the question? Would it be worth re-visiting the topic of word length and performance implications, but in a more neutral manner? I'm not opposed to re-writing that answer (and posting another Q&A-style topic), but wanted to know what the community thought of it first.

I just think the whole "32 vs 64" bit topic is still relevant to some users, and furthermore, I attempted to answer the question irrespective to word length (only using 32 and 64 bit numbers as examples). I assume the re-written question would be "How does a processor's word length affect the operation of a computer?", but wanted to make sure it was valid here.

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    Maybe you could rewrite it as a blog post (after checking with the blog editors) and posting it that way? It might solve the problem of it not fitting the QA format, and could be handled in a broader context.
    – Journeyman Geek Mod
    Jun 4, 2012 at 0:52

1 Answer 1


I mean, you voted to close it. This goes hand in hand with acknowledging that the question is not a good fit – and at some point it might just be deleted. That's why it's never a good idea to answer a question that you want closed.

The moderator notice added by nhinkle encouraged the right kind of answers, but after all it's still the wrong kind of question.

That being said, given the scope of the question and the rather hypothetical assumptions being made, I'd rather try to write up a blog post from the contents of your answer. I don't think that'd be a huge effort to make – everything's there already.

I don't want to argue about how we – on Super User – should approach the deletion of "historical" questions, which were causing big troubles on Stack Overflow a couple of weeks ago. This is probably better suited for another Meta topic.

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    Do you think it'd be worth posting a Q&A (self-answered, of course) of what word length means and what implications it has for a computer? I understand it would be better suited for a blog post - and would be willing to write one - but was just wondering if anyone else felt this would be a good question to have pre-answered on SU (especially when classical 32 vs 64-bit questions come up). Jun 3, 2012 at 18:46
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    I personally wouldn't think it's a bad idea. I'm always torn between voting to close questions that are not related to any specific problem at all, but as long as they're sufficiently technical and can be answered, questions asking for explanation are fine too. So in that case: I would say it's okay. But maybe wait and see what others have to say.
    – slhck
    Jun 3, 2012 at 19:09

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