It is done by an algorithm (a list of well-defined instructions) It is not done by staff member. Hubscore play a big role in determining what is best sometimes hot. Hubs that have proven to be quality and gain traffic. Also question asked about Hupages help too.
It seems that when I ask a question pertaining to Hubpages, it goes right under "hot". Other questions.....not so much. Other than asking hub related questions I do not know. I prefer to look under latest and save hot for last.
You can help the HubPages community highlight top quality content by ranking this answer up or down.