# Tag Info

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

Demanding that questions only deal with situations that unequivocally can occur in the real world rules out objects on infinite planes, point masses, Einsteinian trains, Maxwell's demon, supersymmetry, superstring theory, and any of the other standard thought experiments that form the underpinnings of a standard physics education. The ability of applying ...

20

My take on it: No, this question is nowhere near on-topic. It is simply not about physics. I agree it's a fun question, and that this can make it attractive to some people. But we don't set the site scope depending on whether questions are fun or not $-$ the site scope is physics, and questions are judged against that standard. And the fact of the matter is, ...

20

Suppose the question had asked “How do I find the approximate volume of an asteroid ?”. I doubt there would be any serious arguments for closing that question. If we are happy to accept a volume/asteroid question then why should we reject a surface area/chicken question ? Estimating volume is on-topic for PSE but estimating surface area isn’t ?? But that ...

18

No, you have done the right thing. With some many questions on the site it's very easy to miss the fact that a duplicate exists, and to be fair the site search isn't as great as it could be. Don't attach too much significance to the downvotes. It's easy to feel that downvotes are a personal criticism, but really they are just a statement that the question ...

18

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 ...

15

The fault here is mine. I didn't take enough care in checking the match between the post and the proposed source. I can only offer by apologies and delete the accusatory comment on the post.

14

I think this question should be on-topic. To the extent that it is a software-recommendations question, it's precisely the kind of recommendation question we want to encourage: it is well-researched, it has a clear statement of goals and of the OP's situation, and clear requirements on the answers, which also make it clear that the answers are expected to be ...

14

Your question does not ask a conceptual question about physics, it simply asks users to solve the exercise you call "the Devil's problem". That you ask us to solve the exercise not by saying "Solve this for me" but by asking whether a given number is the answer doesn't change anything in my eyes - how is an answer supposed to make the ...

13

13

First, note that not all homework related questions are off topic here. However... I wasn't interested in learning or understanding any physics methods; my interest was to find out whether 13 is indeed the answer for the problem in question. It's the Devil's dozen that made me interested. For me, the value of the posted solutions is that they prove that 13 ...

12

Yeah, I think that makes sense. The question in its current form seems like just the kind of thing the new recommendation policy is designed to encourage, and we should definitely have one open question about intro QM books. (Of course we also have to make sure the answers are in shape, but that can happen whenever.) Since this is an active meta discussion ...

12

You are asking us to do a literature review on the subject of carbon dioxide and global warming. A student starting a PhD on the subject would spend weeks doing a review like this. Your question was closed as too broad because, well, it's too broad.

12

This behaviour isn't really frowned upon, so it should be fine. This answer by David Z is basically on that exact topic, and gives good advice how to do it properly. Given the comments are over a week old, and you feel they answer your question, I don't think it would be a problem to combine them into an answer, as long as you give proper attribution when ...

11

I don't speak for the other moderators, but my concern with this question and the other like it is that very often the answers that such questions attract are not about physics. In this particular case that are at least a half a dozen answers that are frankly terrible that have received lots of upvotes. "Explanations" in terms of other forces might shut the ...

11

The most-upvoted answer to that question is a great example of discussing mathematics as opposed to doing mathematics. The meat of the answer is [T]he real problem is not so much nonrenormalizability as high-energy behavior inconsistent with local quantum field theory. ... With gravity, this high-energy/short-distance correspondence breaks down. ... This ...

11

The answer is pretty much irrelevant as to whether the question should be closed, particularly for homework-like questions: that determination should be done based on the question text itself, and the fact that you've also provided an answer to that question not a factor there. In the specific example you linked to, the question itself is very poorly ...

11

The title of the question is "Find the Thevenin's Voltage," and the first line is "Please solve this." In its current form, it is a straightforward homework question. If there is a deeper, on-topic question contained inside, then the question should be edited to contain only that question.

11

There is always a random element to voting. Votes not only refer to the raw content of a question but also its presentation: How easy it is to read (due to formatting) and understand, how well it makes its argument. That two questions ask about the same phenomenon does not mean both of them are equally "good questions" in this sense, and your ...

10

I want to point out one aspect of the question closure procedure which is relevant here but is not apparent to <3k users (and even then takes a while to realize). When voting to close a question, one gets to choose between the multiple options, but after you have five close votes the question gets closed regardless of what the mix of options is. (That is, ...

10

Questions which are edited are put into a queue to be reviewed for reopening. This is the primary mechanism by which questions get reopened after being put on hold. Flagging for moderator attention is a backup option, to be used when the review process isn't working - either because the question is too old to be reviewed, or, if you really believe that the ...

10

10

Of the seven questions you have asked five of them have been answered with no or only minor edits to the question. The question Cosmology parameters was edited because it contained multiple different questions and we require only one question per post. The question was edited and subsequently answered, and you have accepted the answer. In fact four of the ...

10

First, thanks for coming to meta and asking! It's not your hunch, though. We don't discourage using external sources; actually, it's encouraged to link or cite useful and relevant external resources whenever appropriate, but when doing so in a question or answer, you need to do it in such a way that your question or answer makes sense even to a reader who ...

10

My view is that you should answer. I would post an answer if I could but the question is far outside my price range. I have no wish to restart the agonising debate about homework, but for what it's worth my main aim when I answer a question is to help the OP learn something new and/or understand something that they hadn't previously appreciated. Questions ...

10

The close reason on the question directs to the help center. The first bullet point in the on-topic section reads: Explanations of observed physical or astronomical phenomena Perhaps there is confusion since the question is asking "what is this" rather than "why is this". Unfortunately, to effectively do research for "why", ...

10

I agree with you: while most questions about engineering are off-topic for us, we make an exception for engineering-like questions about experimental apparatus. I've retagged and reopened the question.

10

Disclaimer: I did not give closing or reopening votes for the surface area of the chicken question. I have to say that this is one of the few times I completely disagree with Emilio Pisanty's opinion, usually so wise and equilibrate. Let's forget the funny context the question has been asked. The real problem is how to estimate the surface area of the ...

10

The issue I take with the question is its nonsensical context ("building a chicken army to conquer the world"). If the question were just about "How do I measure the surface area of an irregular object, e.g. a chicken", it would be fine. However, editing the question this way would make a lot of the answers look odd, since they are ...

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