# Tag Info

39

HNQs with $\geq 3$ answer are often protected by a moderator to prevent "thanks!", "me too!", or spam answers by new users. Questions can be flagged to let moderators know that they should be protected/unprotected. I doubt it would make a difference if I claim that I'm not a bot, so let me just point to the list of current Phys.SE moderators.

36

Summary History questions are welcome on this site whenever they have any bearing on our modern understanding of physics. However, if a question has only minimal or null bearing on our current understanding, or it specifically requires a historian's skills, toolset, and mindset to answer, then it should be migrated to the History of Science and Maths ...

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 ...

27

For me, if I have a question, I usually do the research myself and since I'm in grad school, I can use my library to get any paper I want to read. But the other side of the coin is that I'm paid to ask questions and answer them. That's what research is about. And in my field, the competition for money is fierce and we have to be very careful to protect not ...

27

I agree. Screenshots of text have no place on this site. There is simply no reason that plain text should ever be presented as a screenshot, and plenty of reasons why it shouldn't. If you want to quote text from a separate source which you have as an image, it is your responsibility to transcribe it. Transcribing the text, simply put, makes the site easier ...

26

What research do I need to do before asking a question? Here's the general rule: Before asking a question, do anything else you can think of that might get you the answer. In particular, you should probably do all of the following before asking here: Think about the question. What do you already know that relates to it? Narrow it down to the specific ...

26

Topicality The basic problem is that thee is a conflict between what we say this site is: Physics Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for active researchers, academics and students of physics and astronomy. and a very wide-spread belief that it is OK for complete newcomers to a subject to raise their question is absolutely any place on the web ...

25

Yes, we should. "Homework" isn't the issue I think we all agree that whether or not a post comes from a homework assignment is irrelevant, as illustrated by this example question: Consider a transmon qubit with capacitance C and Josephson junction critical current I_c. What is the matrix element <1|Q|0> for this system? I might be motivated to ask ...

25

I have a lot of sympathy with your position and I will generally put some effort into trying to interpret questions that are awkwardly phrased. However I think it's reasonable to expect someone asking a question to put as much effort into researching and writing it as they expect us to put in to answering it. As much can be learned from posting a carefully ...

22

Can we/should we/how can we encourage them/help them to ask more? I feel like there may be an untapped wealth of great questions lurking out there. Yes, we should encourage expert users to ask more questions in their area of expertise. I agree with you that the proportion of good questions would be greater if the experts shared more. Here are five ...

21

Recently I've noticed a few people posting questions in rapid succession, each with a screenshot of a problem. If you look at the questions as a whole, it's obvious they've split their entire problem set or take-home exam into tiny pieces and asked us how to do the whole thing. This sort of behavior, which is undesirable but not necessarily obvious to ...

21

It isn't compulsory to accept an answer. If you feel that neither answer is acceptable then do not accept either of them. If you haven't received an answer that satisfies you then placing a bounty is the correct approach. It hasn't worked (so far) in this case, but that's the risk you run. It may simply be that none of the site members are experts in this ...

20

While I disagree with the specific implementation, I think userØØ7's idea does have something to it. Can we have the page respond to users entering the homework tag by showing a short homework FAQ and links to the canonical meta question? I would like to have new users confronted to the homework section of the FAQ and the How do I ask homework questions on ...

20

To discourage rapid postings of the type alluded to in the question, methinks screenshots of text should be outright banned. I can understand a screenshot of a figure, but if it can be easily done with LaTeX/MathJax, there’s no place for a screenshot. If anything, the time and effort going to typesetting makes it easier to justify that the OP has done some ...

19

Nice graphs! I personally thought this would be obvious though. If we use votes as a way of measuring "best" (far from accurate), then the posts with the most votes will be the ones that more people can understand and appreciate. Popular posts cater to this perfectly, and thus get the most votes. Really good higher level questions are (a) hard to find as ...

19

Do not neglect the degree to which the "level" of a question determines the audience that will be interested. There are more laymen than beginners that journymen than masters, and than means that there are more people to be impressed by basic questions than by esoteric, expert level questions. The result is that it is the really good basic questions and the ...

19

and then it is hard to tell if the curve is starting to increase again or stabilizing around a constant value of 7%. I don't think this is hard. It's pretty obvious to me that the duplicate closure rate has saturated at a value of about 7%. This is vaguely high for SE standards but not something I'd be at all inclined to worry about. Here is a copy of the ...

18

Firstly, you're asking two separate questions that need to be dealt with differently. One question has to do with HW posts, and another has to do with basic posts. The Data Now for the data: Unfortunately I can't cook up a query that reliably separates basic and non-basic questions. Analysis The last data point is incomplete (data.SE lags behind by ~a week, ...

18

I believe I am in the minority of high rep users who ask a lot of questions. I've asked 65 questions, and this is high compared to the next 5 users ahead of me, who've asked 3, 2, 20, 29, and 2 questions. When someone writes 200 answers and asks 2 questions, then after all the time they've spent on the site, it's pretty obvious to call it a pattern. So ...

18

Sure, people shouldn't just blurt out whatever question pops into their minds without thinking about it and making at least some attempt to find the answer. The real question is how much is enough? What is a reasonable level of research? How do we measure that or even decide how much research was actually done? Should the bar be lower for a more beginner ...

18

To the right of every page is the Hot Network Questions list. If you note the list carefully, you'll find the question you linked to appear on the list: While not the clearest picture (looks better on my screen even after cropping it), there's your answer and the hot question. I have three such answers (3 links there) to my name due to the HNQ-effect, and ...

18

Not all "Why X?" questions are created equal. The appearance of the word "why?" alone tells you nothing about a question. Let's go through your examples first to see explicitly what I mean: The question title Itô or Stratonovich calculus: which one is more relevant from the point of view of physics? is badly chosen. The actual question seems to be: "How do ...

17

I agree with a strong caveat. The tag wiki excerpt must function as an exceptionally well-tuned tool to catch the great homework/problem-solving questions, turn the borderline cases into good questions, and prevent bad questions as far as possible. The way tag synonyms work at Ask a Question time is the following. You type in the tag you think you should ...

17

There are some effects of highly negative score not related to reputation: A question below -4 will be pushed of the front page (i.e. what visitors see at `physics.stackexchange.com? ), cf. this meta answer. Users with more than 20k reputation can vote to delete questions of score -3 or lower immediately after they are closed without the usual 2 day period ...

17

I agree and would vote to reopen if the closing vote weren't a mod. Reasons: One does not know before asking the question what the answer is going to look like. Once you've seen the answer then one could say it's a meteorological phenomenon and not a physics one, but a priori it could equally be an optics question. Meteorology is intimately related to ...

16

Because writing a good question is hard. New users post questions that aren't so good -- not as much effort is put into it, etc etc. Veteran users are more careful about what they ask because they know hat it's like to be on the other side and will want to ask a question well-tailored to get answered. While I'm no expert, I certainly have my times hen I get ...

16

It's important to note that the number of upvotes on a question or an answer are not necessarily a sign of quality, but rather of popularity. You could write a great question or answer, but if nobody pays attention to them, they won't get upvoted. I noticed myself that some of my most-upvoted answers took me the least effort to write, and conversely some ...

16

For the same reason we weren't a homework help site before Physics Overflow was a thing: because we don't want to be that kind of site. The user base of this site have debated the places that introductory exercises have in this site repeatedly since anna v's question that you link and the current policy is the outcome of those debates. Some of the more ...

16

There are a set of automated quality control policies active on the site that set temporary (and no-so-temporary) bans on posting. These bans are specific to either questions or answers and are triggered when a user has too many recently closed, deleted, or down-voted posts of the same kind (question or answer). They are sometimes called the 'q-ban' (for ...

Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible