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In this question I made a quick comment that there is an analog of "Gauss's law" for GR at large distances, that it is called the definition of the "Hawking mass". Further, I commented that it is not reasonable to expect Gauss's law to work in general, because the group is not commutative.

Now I went back to turn this comment into an answer. I suspect David erased it. How am I supposed to know what else is being erased without me knowing about it?

What is the explanation for the missing comment? Somebody deleted it, and I don't think it was me. I wanted to have it as notes for a future answer, and now the future is here, and it's gone (although I remember what it said).

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Browsing the recent [1] history of moderation actions I don't find any action on that post at all.

Is it possibly you're looking at the wrong post? Or could the comments been deleted quite some time ago?


[1] I don't seem to have a full list, but it goes back at least to the beginning of May for the most active moderator.


Following Fabian's helpful comment, I have found deleted comments. Not sure how I missed them before and now I have to go idiot check myself. Your comment:

+1: This is a good question, the "Gauss law" of GR is often presented in the Weak field limit as the definition of the "Hawking mass" of a gravitating system. I am not sure about the inverse-square law, didn't check. Is there a link to the full unpublished paper? If you are looking for an "integral form" of Einstein's equations, it will be generally impossible, because even the nonabelian gauge field equation doesn't allow an integral form because of the non-abelian group is not commutative, so you don't get additive stuff over a big surface. This is a bit of a block to some geometrical ideas.

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    $\begingroup$ You can see any deleted comments from the mod menu on the post (mod -> show deleted comments). $\endgroup$ – Mad Scientist May 21 '12 at 18:38
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    $\begingroup$ It is possible that there were a lot of comments about the form of the question, and there was a clean sweep a while ago. I left it a long time ago, I just remembered about it, and it's gone, and I'm full of paranoia. $\endgroup$ – Ron Maimon May 21 '12 at 18:38
  • $\begingroup$ I'm 100% sure I left this comment, I remembered the content--- noncommutative+ Hawking mass. $\endgroup$ – Ron Maimon May 21 '12 at 18:45
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    $\begingroup$ Thanks dmckee, I remember the content, I'll just post an answer. $\endgroup$ – Ron Maimon May 21 '12 at 18:52
  • $\begingroup$ @Fabian: Ah...thanks. $\endgroup$ – dmckee --- ex-moderator kitten May 21 '12 at 19:03
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    $\begingroup$ For what it's worth, according to the system's record, you deleted that comment yourself, @Ron. Of course, as has been said before, comments are prone to deletion at pretty much any time, so don't use them for any kind of permanent storage of notes or whatever. $\endgroup$ – David Z May 21 '12 at 20:29
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    $\begingroup$ @DavidZaslavsky: I would prefer to get a heads up before comment clean-up. Please warn before deleting, as was your practice in the past. This comment thing is a real headache. $\endgroup$ – Ron Maimon May 22 '12 at 3:37
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    $\begingroup$ @Ron as you know, I normally do post a note before deleting comments. But we (moderators, or anyone else who may gain the ability to delete comments in the future) reserve the right to delete comments without notice. $\endgroup$ – David Z May 22 '12 at 4:00
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    $\begingroup$ @David Right ..., but I thought physics comments that explain stuff the question is asking about are not THAT a bad thing, so they could be allowed to stick around a little bit? I mean not my too chatty things :-P ... Ron often says very useful things in the comments and concerning questions I have asked, I`d like to keep them. Being a bit patient with Ron s physics comments could help cool things further down (he seems still a bit nervous) ... ;-) $\endgroup$ – Dilaton May 22 '12 at 7:35
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    $\begingroup$ @RonMaimon Hi Ron, I think nobody would downvote you or something, if you put your valuable thoughts and notes into a "preliminary" answer and say that you`ll come back to extend/improve/etc it later after you have thought about it or worked it out in more detail ;-). $\endgroup$ – Dilaton May 22 '12 at 7:57
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    $\begingroup$ @Dilaton having content that explains stuff is not a bad thing at all, the only issue is that the comment section is not the place for it in the long term. Comments are meant to be things that can safely be skipped or omitted from the page. So if there is good information in comments, summarize it and incorporate it into the question or answer, where its importance can be recognized. $\endgroup$ – David Z May 22 '12 at 8:24
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    $\begingroup$ @DavidZaslavsky: I always plan on doing this, but I don't like to give answers where I don't know exactly what's what, I like to sit and work it out. If I have an off-the-cuff thing I'm 90% sure of, but I need to check and fill in the detail, I put it in a comment, and I come back later to fill it in. I am paranoid about the comments getting deleted without warning, please, just give a heads up. $\endgroup$ – Ron Maimon May 22 '12 at 9:08

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