I am not sure if this exactly fits into the intended scope of the meta but I will try it out. This is clearly an explicitly subjective question with no universally correct answer, but I suspect that the rules on the meta are fairly less stringent than on the main to possibly accommodate this kind of a post. If not, I will be happy to delete it.
I was wondering if there is a type or category of questions that one uses PSE for if one is in academia (in physics) and has plenty of opportunities to discuss one's questions with fellow students and/or colleagues. It is relatively clear that one being in academia might not have any relevance to what one wants to ask on PSE if what they are asking about pertains to a field that is different from their own field. However, in cases where one asks something that is close enough to their own field so that they can discuss the same with their colleagues, what are the main motivations (or, are there?) for asking it on PSE?
Is it to get a broader perspective from a wider community?
- For example, if there is disagreement among the people you discuss something with or if you just want to be sure that all of you are not making the same mistake, etc.
Is it to ask questions that are peculiar/idiosyncratic enough to your specific intersection of interests that your colleagues might not be interested in them?
Is it the case that you don't see PSE as a second step after having discussed something with your colleagues and rather, you just ask a question here if it arises in your mind when you are not in the presence of your colleagues?
Framed as a close corollary, does there exist a type or category of questions for which PSE has been useful to you even if you are in an academic setting where you could have or might actually have discussed the same questions with your friends and/or colleagues?