Rate articles and "Related" articles"

I'll figure I'd kill two birds with one stone.

My first suggestion. A better way to rate an article. Rather the clicking on the "rec" button, how about a "5 star" rating system or the classic like/dislike. This could also integrate with a user rep score (if you choose to have user rep system)

My second suggestion would be a "related articles" section. When a user is in the "post a topic" page, as they type a title, related articles that might be connected to the title will appear on the right hand side. Example. Lets say I post a opinion or even a question topic about the latest $2 Verizon bill pay fee. But there are already other topics on that said issue. I can then click on the links and get a preview of the other topics and have the option to cancel my post and go to the other topic to place my input.

Same could even be done for existing topics, so users can read Topic A, and see related topics B &C on the right hand side.