Questions tagged [discussion]

The question you're asking is designed to solicit opinions or best-practices on a particular topic, with the goal of reaching community consensus.

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26
votes
1answer
491 views

2019 Community Moderator Election Results

Physics's fourth moderator election has come to a close, the votes have been tallied and the two new moderators are: They'll be joining the existing crew shortly—please thank them for ...
26
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6answers
634 views

Very Naive Questions

I am troubled by the comments on this question and many others like it. The (obviously very naive) questioner posits a physically impossible situation (often FTL travel as in this case, but there are ...
26
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2answers
501 views

Poor reception of 'why' questions

Several times, I've seen 'why' questions dismissed unfairly when a better answer could be given, because of a kneejerk reaction that a 'why' question can never have an answer, because physics is built ...
26
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0answers
476 views

How I learned to stop worrying and start asking questions

As has been noted in the past, particularly in Question self-destruction: why don't experts ask more questions? and in Does reputation correlate with the question-to-answer ratio?, and also here, this ...
25
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12answers
2k views

Bite-sizing homework

Well, meta posts about "homework" keep on coming, but we still don't seem to have a solution that sticks, so I'll give it another shot. For what it's worth I think the current system isn't so bad that ...
25
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4answers
1k views

Ultimately, what will the Physics Stack Exchange Become? Are there long term goals?

It was sometime back that I realized what we are synthesizing here (possibly) is an archive for an expert system. Put the Physics Stack Exchange together with an AI machine and you have a super-...
25
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2answers
508 views

Does reputation correlate with the question-to-answer ratio?

Reputation is a rough measure of a user's experience with the site. It can also be used as a (not very accurate) proxy for their overall expertise in physics. Our user population consists of people ...
25
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4answers
642 views

What does everyone mean by “insufficient research effort”?

Lately I've noticed a lot of close votes, down votes, and comments to the effect of "this question is too low level" or "the answer is on the internet if you search for it" or "you should already know ...
25
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8answers
1k views

“No math, please” questions

There are more and more questions, which are formulted like "Can you explain that without math?" or "I know that there is math, but is there an explanation in plain words?" or even "Can you tell ...
25
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3answers
716 views

Flagging low quality answers: an experiment

Abstract: We are experimenting with expanding the scope of the very low quality (VLQ) flag. For two weeks, August 8-21, moderators will not decline any VLQ flags. We will allow these flags will sit in ...
25
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6answers
504 views

How should we deal with incorrect comments?

On this site, there is a tendency for users to answer questions with terse comments. It's especially prevalent for low quality questions which are in danger of being closed. Recently, I've been ...
25
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0answers
607 views

The Theoretical Physic proposal is back underway!

In reference to: Disposition of Area 51 Proposal: Theoretical Physics The proposal for creating a "Theoretical Physics" site will not be closed. Thank you to the Physics SE community — You ...
24
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3answers
576 views

Users that post every question in their homework/exams

Everybody who's been here for a while knows that the homework policy is not as advertised. If the exercise is sufficiently interesting, and the OP is sufficiently polite, the question often stays ...
24
votes
1answer
892 views

Are questions about mathematics used in physics always off topic?

This question looks in imminent danger of being closed on the grounds that it's a pure mathematics question. This is something that happened a lot when I was more active on the site, and is one of the ...
24
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1answer
966 views

Map of 64 Tags from Physics.SE

I've just made a map of tags for Physics.SE. In short: tag size is related to tag popularity and edges are related to tag co-occurrences in questions. For me it looks as a "snapshot" of topics and ...
24
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0answers
1k views

The User, The Myth, The Legend

User Floris has recently become the third user to obtain the Legendary badge, which is one of the less awarded badges out there. Being one of the most prolific contributors to this site, I just wanted ...
23
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42answers
2k views

A Jim for all seasons

Note: This contest is currently inactive. It may be resumed again in the future. So there has been a recent influx of new Jims (meaning maybe 2 in a while). Now, we all know that I am the one true ...
23
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6answers
1k views

What are the goals of this site?

This discussion question is inspired by this post on the current homework policy question. The main question is What are the goals of this site? Some things to think about when answering: What is ...
23
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4answers
482 views

2012 Community Moderator Election Results

Physics's second moderator election has come to a close, the votes have been tallied, and the new moderators are: They'll be joining the existing crew shortly — please thank them for ...
23
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5answers
709 views

Why isn't bad content downvoted and commented on enough

In SE sites other than SO, there is a less strict "policy". Less down-votes, easier to up-vote, more "caring" people. Good: There is a big upside for an SE site to being less strict: it promotes ...
23
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3answers
341 views

Citations are the 'source code' of physics stackexchange

The Stack Overflow faq says: We feel the best Stack Overflow questions have a bit of source code I think the Physics Stack Exchange faq should say: We feel the best Physics Stack Exchange ...
23
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2answers
1k views

Can we have a font which harmonizes better with MathJax?

It seems that we're somewhere in the queue for a site CSS adjustment, accompanied by the new profile pages. Since the CSS is getting a makeover, I would like to float this idea: can we change the font ...
23
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4answers
319 views

Allowance of Computational Physics questions

I know this is a frequently discussed topic but I am not happy with the current stance of treating Computational Physics related questions as "Off Topic". A couple days ago I asked this question (...
23
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1answer
389 views

Canonical question about the flow of time

I was looking at: Is there really a direction of time? which is yet another question related to the flow of time, and I was thinking that it would be nice to have a master Flow of Time question that ...
22
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7answers
685 views

Banning homework: vote and documentation

It was proposed recently on meta that, as part of a broader programme of increasing the site quality, we ban homework questions altogether. This proposal seems to have really quite strong support. On ...
22
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6answers
926 views

Is the demise of Stack Exchange (as we know it) ineluctable?

I feel concerned about a thought that I had recently. I am wondering if the current policy about duplicate questions may become problematic in the (very) long term for the health of Stack Exchange. ...
22
votes
6answers
427 views

New Site Design

I'd like to present the community with a new final site design I've been working on. The goal is to keep the site clean and minimalistic, but at the same time give our physics site a unique branding. ...
21
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40answers
3k views

Community Promotion Ads - 2014 [duplicate]

It's the time of the year again, namely it is December 2013, and so we shall now refresh our Community Promotion Ads for the new year. What are Community Promotion Ads? Community Promotion Ads are ...
21
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5answers
5k views

Should any check-my-work questions be made on topic?

It's long overdue that I make this post revisiting our policy on "check-my-work" questions. These are questions, often (but not necessarily) homework-like, that present a complete mathematical or ...
21
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6answers
707 views

Level of questions: what do we do now ?

There has been a lot of discussions about the level of the questions and the quality of the questions. It seems to me that we have a core group of users, that are following Physics SE from a long ...
21
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9answers
871 views

How can we “make it easier for new users to succeed”?

tl/dr What specific policy changes or behavior changes do you think would lower the barrier to entry for new users represented by the current homework policy? This essay is in response to a recent ...
21
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7answers
895 views

A week of community closing: what should be disallowed homework?

In this answer it was suggested that it might be good for moderators to refrain from unilaterally closing homework (or homework-like) questions for a while, so that we can get a better sense of what ...
21
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4answers
612 views

Is an asker's age relevant?

In Why does Newton's Third Law actually work?, the asker states their age in the question. (They are 10 years old.) On the one hand, their age does not have anything to do with Newton's Third ...
21
votes
1answer
1k views

We're in Physics Today!

The question Can I compute the mass of a coin based on the sound of its fall? has appeared on the Physics Today Facebook page. Well done to all who contributed to that question. It has to be good for ...
21
votes
1answer
419 views

The site toolbar looks broken in Chrome. How can I fix it?

Since earlier this month, the main toolbar of the site (with links to Questions, Tags, Users, Badges, Unanswered and Ask Question) has changed, distinctly for the worse: The font looks blocky and ...
21
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4answers
944 views

Consider supporting proposals of other SE science sites

Science proposals need your help! Consider committing to these, to make them successful & scientific: See also the long list of science and technology proposals on Area 51. Committers needed ...
21
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3answers
408 views

Can we please let the community close questions?

It seems the bulk of questions being closed are being closed unilaterally by moderators or by agreement between moderators, and not by the "vote to close" mechanism. This is extremely irritating, as ...
21
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0answers
551 views

Giving newbies time to think

Maybe it’s just me, however, there are some questions where there exist much better answers somewhere which are not the accepted one. I understand that for an answer to be accepted, it just need to "...
20
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12answers
690 views

2016 Moderator Election Q&A - Question Collection

Physics is scheduled for an election starting next week, September 26th. In connection with that election, we will be hosting a Q&A here for candidates. This will be an opportunity for members of ...
20
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5answers
972 views

Mass of a coin question went viral, despite inital downvotes and negative comments

I noticed that this question from a new user, Can I compute the mass of a coin based on the sound of its fall? went viral, attracting tens of thousands of views and hundreds of votes. The numbers ...
20
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4answers
643 views

Are history of physics questions allowed?

I've been meaning to ask about the timeline of discovery of a certain physical phenomenon on the main site, but I thought I should probably ask a more general question here on meta to clear the air: ...
20
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2answers
980 views

How did mathematics end up with two Stack Exchange sites, while Physics only got one?

I'm prompted to start this thread by a comment on a recent question about why this site has the homework policy that it does. As I said in that answer, the ecological niche that this site occupies is ...
20
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6answers
943 views

What is the ultimate purpose of physics.stackexchange - revisited

I note What is the ultimate purpose of physics.stackexchange?, but it seems to me that the accepted answer doesn't answer the question. I have no special wish to get excessively philosophical, but I ...
20
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5answers
867 views

Questions with an ulterior motive

There are a lot of questions posted which ask about what mainstream physics says about something, but imply that the OP has a completely different opinion. For example: https://physics.stackexchange....
20
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4answers
560 views

How can “torus shape” planet be “non-mainstream” physics?

Refer to this question: How would the rotational and orbital mechanics differ on a torus-shaped planet as compared to a spherical planet? This is asking about torus-shaped planet rotational and ...
20
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3answers
368 views

Why was this Very Low Quality flag declined?

I have always felt that the criteria for the use of the Very Low Quality flag are fuzzy, confusing, and ultimately wrong, and I recently had a VLQ flag declined that I would like some clarifications ...
20
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5answers
463 views

Are two questions that only differ in the desired level of sophistication of the answer duplicates?

This meta discussion is sort of a spin-off from this recent meta discussion about whether or not an asker's age is relevant to a question, and whether or not it should be edited out. Since the issue ...
20
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3answers
707 views

Graduate and above level questions aren't homework

I know, I know, it's yet another Meta post about our homework policy. Feel free to downvote and write abusive comments if you're heartily sick of posts about the homework policy. If you're still with ...
19
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8answers
937 views

What can be done to improve Physics.SE as an active forum for physics researchers and student's?

As noted elsewhere, I have personally discontinued use of Physics.SE, since it seems to me that it no longer acts as a forum for research based physics Q&A. Over the past 12 months there has in my ...
19
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23answers
1k views

Replacing the homework policy 1: what existing questions should be on/off topic?

TL;DR: post examples of current questions which are edge cases for the new policy, look through the list, and vote answers UP if you think they should be ON TOPIC vote answers DOWN if you ...