Hot answers tagged

31

Yes, it does. I tried exploring this using this SEDE query, whose results go something like this: This is a log-log plot and it shows two distinct regimes, with a definite linear correlation in the higher-rep side. This means that the site's user base really does consist of two different populations with very different behaviours: novice users with reps ...


19

As paradoxically as it may sound, the apparent discrepancy (on whether magnetic monopoles exist or not) may to a large extent boil down to semantics and the use in different context. E.g.: Are we discussing 1) a model? 2) the actual universe? 3) only our local vicinity of the universe? 4)...? By the word existence, do we e.g. mean 1) have been directly ...


15

TL;DR: Voting is one of the things that makes the SE sites work (the review queues being another big one); if you aren't downvoting, you are not helping this place work; so downvote on the bad answers as you see them. What makes you avoid casting a down-vote or commenting on a bad answer? Interpreting "you" here as plural (rather than me specifically), ...


15

No. A non-peer reviewed reference is better than no reference. The reader can judge the legitimacy of a reference him/herself. In general, Phys.SE encourages answerers to back up claims with references. (Concerning self-citations, see this meta post. For link-only answers, see this meta post.)


15

This is a technical writing problem, and it is your problem as the author. Start with a good, representative title. If your title reads like a different or simpler question than you intend then you have communicated something other than what you intended. If you can't state the question in the title there is a good chance you are trying to cram too much ...


15

Simple: don't write answers to questions that are going to get deleted. Homework questions get deleted for a reason: we don't want them here. If you answer poor-quality homework questions, you are nullifying the effect of the homework policy and you are providing an incentive for the users whose questions you answer (as well as others who see that those ...


14

when should simple questions be given answers like this in the comments? NEVER For at least two reasons: comments can be (and often are) deleted, and comments can't be downvoted, so our ability to deal with wrong information in comments is limited. Of course, this is not something we moderators enforce too aggressively, because if someone posts a good ...


14

Are there fewer votes on old answers? Using my recent Data Query Age-Score correlation, I gathered the average net scores of answers as a function of the number of days between the answer posting date and the question posting date. The figure below1 shows the result of the query: There is a slope at the early part (t ~< 200), suggesting that the most ...


14

This request has a long history going back to the early days of Stack Overflow. You'll notice that question is marked as declined. It was actually status-pending for months before being declined and instead the question up-vote value was reduced to 5 (from the original value of 10 just like answers). I doubt the team will be willing to revisit this decision ...


14

Unacknowledged or unmarked quotes are plagiarism, plain and simple, and they deserve the full weight of community displeasure to be heaved on them: comments, downvotes, and eventual deletion. On the other hand, if an answer consists completely of well-acknowledged quotations then it deserves to stay on the site - it's not doing anything against the rules, ...


13

Honestly, asking people to upvote your answer is considered to be in bad taste. So the blunt answer is no, we won't upvote your answer because you asked us to. What you can do, however, is post a link to your answer in chat (if you have access to it) and invite people to read it and vote on it as they see fit. This is better than asking for upvotes since ...


13

The homework policy remains a contentious issue and feelings can run high about it so I'm reluctant to stoke the flames any higher. However if we take the narrow interpretation of homework as the verbatim posting of a question set as homework or some other form of course work then I suspect most would agree we do not want to see such questions here. So we ...


13

Greetings from one of your human exception handlers! If you think that there's a user who needs some intervention to produce better-quality content, and you suspect that intervention is not coming in the form of an automatic answer ban, please raise a custom flag on a typical post of theirs to guide our attention to it. We have acted on this type of ...


13

I don't think we need any additional policies about referring to or questioning about papers published through predatory journals. Assuming the paper is mainstream... Well, we don't really need to do anything. Maybe, in the case that the post is written by the author of the paper, we could provide a link indicating that journal is predatory, but nothing ...


12

Do you find that answers in comments are a problem? Yes. Any time "answering information" is posted as a comment instead of as an answer, it makes it more difficult for people to find, and we also lose access to the mechanism of voting as an indicator of the quality of the answer. If so, what measures should be taken to discourage that kind of answers? ...


12

When you get hit with the automatic answer block, you get linked to a page that describes how your situation and how to get out of it Read it. Now, improve your existing answers. You have some deleted link-only answers; elaborate on them and undelete. Don't ask questions or leave comments in the answer box, such stuff gets flagged and deleted. Do not ...


12

I quote the comment I left on your answer: I'm temporarily deleting this in accordance with our homework policy. Please don't post complete answers to homework-like questions. That's why. I'm not sure what to add to that. (Maybe if you can elaborate on why you were confused by that message, I can provide something more useful.)


12

I think the story is both more complicated and more simple, and it helps to look at questions and answers separately: The superimposed curves are very strongly smoothed versions of the data, using a cubic smoothing spline (Matlab's csaps with parameter p = 0.1). According to this, with increasing reputation a user has more and more questions, but at some ...


12

What should I do when face a response like this? Vote it up if you find it useful, don't if you don't (although I would implore you to not vote it down unless you find it needlessly obfuscated), and if it doesn't satisfy you, don't accept it. It might be good if you left a comment like "I was looking for something less technical". While not every answerer ...


12

Good idea to make this a question so I can post my comment there as an answer: yes, this is fine. Actually, in order to avoid arguments over whether it does constitute an answer or not, I'll say this: The fact that the content of an answer is taken from someone else's comment is not, itself, a problem. This means that you can post the content of someone ...


12

I would interpret the downvotes on the answers to both of those questions as saying don't answer this kind of homework questions and I agree with that perspective. Providing answers to obvious do-my-work-for-me questions only encourages more of them, and they are a clear drag on the quality of the site. This is a gray area, but if I see a Q&A pair ...


11

And what would such a flag do? Alert the moderators? What if they lack sufficient expertise in the flagged topic to make a good call? Alert high-rep users? So that they can... criticize the post for you? Perhaps a better idea would be to just indicate publicly that the post was flagged. We could even maintain a count of the number of such flags, and display ...


11

I don't ask questions or refrain from asking questions on SE based on the amount of rep I will gain. I ask a question if I want to know the answer. High levels of activity are not necessarily a sign of health, so it's not obvious to me that a low number of good questions is a bad thing, to be remedied by fiddling with rules. One of the reasons I stopped ...


11

Treating Wikipedia as authoritative (i.e. "Wikipedia say X and that settles it!") would be laughably silly, but Wikipedia is a fairly reliable source for all kinds of basic and widely available knowledge. Several uses of Wikkipedia that are (in my opinion, with my moderators hat taken off) completely appropriate: To support a argument or derivation only ...


11

Questions and answers on Stack Exchange site are not just for the asker. Posts will remain around, be indexed by search engines and visited by many people over the years (Google is responsible roughly one-quarter of all Physics SE traffic). So, yes, answers that lie outside the OP's skill range are acceptable. You can assume the OP won't accept them, but ...


11

Downvotes are an unavoidable effect of having an answer that is not accurate, and they should remain that way. Downvotes are not a criticism on the poster, they are the way to keep good answers on the top and inaccurate answers (duly indicated as such in the comments, ideally) further down; it's what makes this site good. One strategy to answer questions is ...


11

We have discussed this before although that question is only tangentially related to this one. Based on that question though, you should find that the most active people who answer questions have some of the fewest questions asked. For the most part, the community is split into two broad groups -- those who ask questions and rarely answer (which seems to be ...


11

This seemed like an interesting question, so I figured I'd do some research, too. I started with Kyle's SEDE query, and made a few changes to it: Since the original question was about answering old questions with no answers yet, I figured it would be more meaningful to only look at the first answer to each question. Kyle's query bins the ages by day, but ...


11

I won't give my opinion on this directly, but I would like to point out the site description from the first line of the Tour page: Physics Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for active researchers, academics and students of physics and astronomy. So, I would read that to mean that answering questions for the layman (qualified in your post as ...


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