In the recent discussion with Emilio Pisanty I was deprived of the opportunity to write comments. I'd like to know the explanation. Which rule did I violate?

EDIT. After John Rennie's comment I found that the possibility to add comments returned back to me. But the problem, I believe, did not disappear. @EmilioPisanty accuses me in cheating here

You ask for "proofs of the periodic table" without defining what you mean by that term and, frankly, that's little more than an intellectually dishonest bait-and-switch trap.

and here

it's the fact that you leave a yawning abyss of ambiguity in what it is you're actually asking which you then use to say "no, see, that's not what I was asking"

And at the same time people here "rolled back" my words and vote to delete them. This is not called honesty. I explained what I believe is importat for understanding my question in my post at Mathoverflow (to which I gave a reference here). And I tried to explain this here, at physics.stackexchange.com, in what was "rolled back" later. But it's impossible to explain anything if your interlocutors delete your explanations all the way. And I would say, it's immoral.

I believe apart from the rules of this forum there are the common rules for all people in all discussions. And one of them is not shutting the mouth of the interlocutor. My question is

whether this rule is valid here?

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    $\begingroup$ Speaking as one unfamiliar with the exchange you refer to, can you explain what you mean by deprived of the opportunity to write comments. I see you have written several comments there. Have you since been banned from writing comments? Is such a thing possible? $\endgroup$ – John Rennie Sep 13 '17 at 16:03
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    $\begingroup$ Hm... It's strange, when I wrote this post at Meta I couldn't add comments. Now it turns out that I can. What was that? $\endgroup$ – Sergei Akbarov Sep 13 '17 at 16:09
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    $\begingroup$ Anyway. from what Emilio Pisanty writes in our discussion it follows as far as I understand, that I violate some rules here. What are those rules? $\endgroup$ – Sergei Akbarov Sep 13 '17 at 16:12
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    $\begingroup$ There is no such thing as being deprived of the ability to write comments (except for being suspended from the site entirely, in which case not being able to write comments should be the least of your worries). $\endgroup$ – ACuriousMind Sep 13 '17 at 16:21
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    $\begingroup$ @SergeiAkbarov: I can't see that you have violated any rules. While I don't think that your answer leaves the world of physics in a better state than you found it I also don't think it violates any site rules. $\endgroup$ – John Rennie Sep 13 '17 at 16:25
  • $\begingroup$ @JohnRennie The point was that the linked 'answer' does not answer the question and as all such posts it is liable to be removed. OP was concerned about the removal of content, which is a red-herring concern when the content has been misposted as an 'answer' rather than a comment in chat, as suggested by moderators shortly after the post was written. $\endgroup$ – Emilio Pisanty Sep 13 '17 at 16:39
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    $\begingroup$ And as far as the roll-back of edits by a moderator, some of the content served to clarify the question posed, and a large fraction is a rant about epistemological arguments. As pointed out by the moderators, the latter don't belong in the question (if you want to engage in that kind of free-form discussion, you're free to start a chatroom with them, and link to it from the question), but the former do and, I think, could well be added back to the post ─ so long as they actually serve to clarify the question instead of ranting. $\endgroup$ – Emilio Pisanty Sep 13 '17 at 16:53
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    $\begingroup$ Emilio, it is much more reasonable for clarifying an issue, to ask a person about what is not clear, than to "enroll" everything. And it is also much more wise to ask thim before accusations in intellectual cheating. You should have asked me, and I would explain. If there indeed was something unclear. $\endgroup$ – Sergei Akbarov Sep 13 '17 at 17:00
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    $\begingroup$ @Sergei I'm well aware of your question edits of July 2013; frankly, I don't think they help much, but in any case you as a mathematician should be aware that it's what's on the tin that matters. The moderators that removed the rant made clear which types of content belong in questions and which types don't; maybe it was a bit rough as moderator actions go but it was explained well enough and it left a clear path forward (which you then declined to take). $\endgroup$ – Emilio Pisanty Sep 13 '17 at 17:15
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    $\begingroup$ I don't find their explanations convincing. I find them offencive. As well as your behaviour. And I declined nothing. If you still have questions, you can ask them. $\endgroup$ – Sergei Akbarov Sep 13 '17 at 17:28
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    $\begingroup$ @Sergei You were told what was wrong with the rolled back edit so that you could fix it and try again following the guidelines suggested by moderators. They are not trying to offend; that's just a part of moderating the site. $\endgroup$ – JMac Sep 13 '17 at 17:34
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    $\begingroup$ Gentlemen, it will take me some time for finding the papers that Emilio Pisanty referred to here: "The definitions of §2.2 here are plenty, from a physics perspective, to construct the essentials of the periodic table. (And it's insulting of you to pretend that you were unaware of something that can be found that easily.) If that's not sufficient then, frankly, that strays into bait-and-switch territory, and I'm not going to engage in a discussion where you continually raise the requirements of your interlocutors' responses. – Emilio Pisanty" $\endgroup$ – Sergei Akbarov Sep 13 '17 at 22:28
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    $\begingroup$ I am living in Moscow, and it's not easy for me to find these papers, so I would be grateful if somebody could send them to me directly. Besides this, I would be grateful for the explanation of how this happened that these comments of Emilio Pisanty (which were the most interesting places in what he wrote) disappeared after moving the discussion to the chat. $\endgroup$ – Sergei Akbarov Sep 13 '17 at 22:34
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    $\begingroup$ Just in case, here are his references: epubs.siam.org/doi/10.1137/080729050 and scholar.google.co.uk/… $\endgroup$ – Sergei Akbarov Sep 13 '17 at 22:39
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    $\begingroup$ You replied to your own question, but it was not a proper answer, but a remark that should have been placed in a comment (or not at all). The site is a Question and Answer format and "answers" that are argumentative or should be comments will get removed. Likewise comments that are offensive or are not constructive will often get removed - these things have happened most of us, particularly when we were not used to the way the site operates. It is not a discussion-type forum. $\endgroup$ – StephenG Sep 14 '17 at 4:27

To address the comments you make in (v2 of) the question in a definitive fashion: you're conflating three very different issues here.

  • One is criticism I had of your question; that's the quotations you give in this question. I am sorry you have such a hard time accepting the fact that people disagree with you, but I stand by my criticism. This criticism does not impact your ability to use the site in any way.

  • A second issue is the fact that your edits to the question of July 2013 (v4 through v6) do not, as a whole, serve to clarify the question. This is a question-and-answer site, and we expect questions to contain questions and not ongoing discussion, or, in the words of the relevant moderator,

    this is not a discussion forum, nor it is a platform for your epistemological arguments.

    Since the edits did not, as a whole, serve to clarify the question, they were rolled back by a moderator, as is standard practice on Stack Exchange. Moreover, at the time of the roll-back (note: roll-back, not "enrolled") the moderators indicated the reason and noted that the components of the edits that do serve to clarify the question are not problematic. This was perhaps a bit rougher than it could have been but on the whole I find it to be a reasonable moderator action.

    It's important to note that no content (other than comments) was deleted, and all edits are available via the question's revision history. Saying that content was deleted is a bit of hyperbole.

    To be clear, the parts of those edits that do serve to clarify the question (including e.g. point 1, minus the rant) can be reintroduced, as was indicated by the moderators at the time of the roll-back. You have since declined to re-introduce those parts of the edits, so it is reasonable to surmise that you're satisfied with the state of the question.

  • The third issue is the fact that this post is not an answer to the question, in the judgement of multiple members of this community. As I said above, this is a question-and-answer site, not a discussion forum; we expect questions to contain questions and answers to contain answers. Comments can be used to help clarify and improve posts, but they are second-class citizens and they are liable to be removed at any time; any free-form discussion is welcome in chat, either in the main site room or by making a specific room.

    This is what this comment is about: the 'answer' is not an answer, it is an ill-supported rant commenting on posts from a separate thread. As such, if it does get removed, it is not because of "censorship" or any such; it's because it was posted in the wrong format.

    (Similarly, administrative content like the one introduced in v3 of that answer does not belong in posts, either questions or answers. Use comments or flags instead.)

And a couple more comments in general:

  • I appreciate that the moderation in MathOverflow is rather different, in some aspects (particularly as regards long-winded free-form discussions), to Stack Exchange in general. That does not mean that MO-style rants are OK here; it means that this venue has different requirements than the ones you might be used to.

  • There is no site moderation mechanism that leads to users being unable to post comments. Unless you can reproduce this situation, it's impossible to know what gave you that impression.

  • You keep making categorical statements that "no axiomatization is possible" while linking to the MO thread, which does contain a suitable axiomatization (and without giving any criticism to said axiomatization). As pointed out repeatedly on the physics thread a QM explanation of the periodic table is not just doable, it's been done, to any physicist's satisfaction. You did a half-hearted search for axioms you liked, didn't find any, refused to look further even when given explicit leads to follow up, and concluded that there are none ─ kinda like in the saying "absence of evidence is not evidence of absence", but dropping the "not". I'm not sure why you think that that's a constructive way to go about an interdisciplinary discussion but let me assure you that it's not.

  • Voting on meta works differently to how it does on main. Downvotes on questions normally do not mean that the question is "bad"; instead, they're often used to express disagreement with the post's premises or its conclusions.

  • $\begingroup$ I have no time to comment this right now, but here is the link to the chat: chat.stackexchange.com/rooms/65564/… $\endgroup$ – Sergei Akbarov Sep 14 '17 at 17:49
  • $\begingroup$ Perhaps it will be better to post my own answer, but I'll try to use comments first. I think, its easier to explain what happens in examples. @EmilioPisanty, could you give a reference for this: "You keep making categorical statements that "no axiomatization is possible"" Where did I write this? $\endgroup$ – Sergei Akbarov Sep 16 '17 at 11:51
  • $\begingroup$ @Sergei Perhaps I should apologize - I thought you were asking an interesting question, and I was trying to help salvage that, but it seems that what you had in mind is far more boring than I had thought. The way I read things, most of the physicist responses you feel are inadequate are perfectly good answers to the interesting question; any mismatch is, frankly, your fault for failing to communicate correctly what you had in mind even after multiple indications that your meaning was unclear. $\endgroup$ – Emilio Pisanty Sep 16 '17 at 22:47
  • $\begingroup$ You replace reality with feelings. Independently on whether my questions are interesting for you or boring, you have no right to lie. I never wrote this: "no axiomatization is possible". And you have no right to put a blame on me for your lies: "any mismatch is, frankly, your fault for failing to communicate correctly". $\endgroup$ – Sergei Akbarov Sep 17 '17 at 4:47
  • $\begingroup$ And what should I think about this: “To be clear, the parts of those edits that do serve to clarify the question (including e.g. point 1, minus the rant) can be reintroduced, as was indicated by the moderators at the time of the roll-back. You have since declined to re-introduce those parts of the edits, so it is reasonable to surmise that you're satisfied with the state of the question.”? Where did the moderators indicate this? $\endgroup$ – Sergei Akbarov Sep 17 '17 at 4:49
  • $\begingroup$ When moderators rolled back my edits, they left two comments - physics.stackexchange.com/questions/16647/… and physics.stackexchange.com/questions/16647/… - and no one of them contains an indication that "...the parts of those edits that do serve to clarify the question (including e.g. point 1, minus the rant) can be reintroduced". This is also a lie. $\endgroup$ – Sergei Akbarov Sep 18 '17 at 7:20
  • $\begingroup$ In the chat - chat.stackexchange.com/rooms/65564/… - you write “A suitable axiomatization is linked in Terry Tao's answer in the MO thread you link to in this post; ... it is more than sufficient for any reasonable understanding of the periodic table.” Logically your words mean that what I was mentioning - "the first electronic orbit can have only 2 electrons, the second - 8, the third - again 8, the fourth - 18, and so on" - must be a theorem in this axiomatic theory. Where is this theorem? $\endgroup$ – Sergei Akbarov Sep 18 '17 at 7:49
  • $\begingroup$ @SergeiAkbarov This is a thread about procedure. Take the discussion about the question to the existing chat room. $\endgroup$ – Emilio Pisanty Sep 18 '17 at 12:05
  • $\begingroup$ As far as I see, the reading of the moderator comments on the original question at the time of the roll-back is perfectly clear. If it wasn't clear to you at the time, you could have replied asking for clarification (but you didn't). In any case you're free to reintroduce edits that clarify the question at any point. Nobody is infringing on your ability to post or clarify content so long as you post in the correct venue (i.e. questions in questions, answers in answers, discussion in chat), and that's the only procedural point at stake here. $\endgroup$ – Emilio Pisanty Sep 18 '17 at 12:10

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