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The same mildly interesting question, or minor variants thereof, has been asked several times, often by accounts with different or changing usernames. Each time someone asks for clarification, or points out that the question is similar to or identical to one before, the question gets deleted. This means that even if I were to later spend some spare time trying to answer the question, I have no incentive to, because the user(s) keep employing these monumentally irritating hit-and-run tactics.
Since I can't see deleted questions, I can't give links; but I assume I'm not the only one who's recognized the pattern.
Could someone who can see deleted posts, and know what's being referred to, post a link or two here? On a cursory glance I couldn't work out what this was referring to.
The questions are always tagged with functional-analysis and operator-norms; they are always about having a 2-dim subspace of R^3 and asking about the relation between l^p to l^p norms of some operator. I would love to give more detail, but the questions keep getting deleted and then reposted without links back to the original, so I can't refresh my memory. Recent variants mentioned Kolmogorov numbers...
I'm just posting a few links to threads on MO and math.SE: For lack of reputation here I can't check whether the links to two of the three MO-threads work, but I'm pretty certain they do.
(the last one is a bit exceptional, but I'm sure it was also posted on MO in various versions).
Will, I don't think users q.g. nor ksj03 is relevant to the present discussion. The people/person I'm thinking of only ever seems to ask the same question.
MO: 50600 is the ur-example, I have a vague recollection of other variants where 3 gets replaced by some other exponent.
The annoying thing is: I think it could be a mildly interesting question (although norm-preserving extensions usually don't exist unless the range is at least a curly-L-infinity space). But the manner in which these questions are asked, by someone changing their name all the effing time, who not once has attempted to show what he or she has already done towards solving the question, ca me fache.
Will: got it.
Another one: http://mathoverflow.net/questions/79739/
So what can we do about this? I'm stumped, but appreciate that it's tedious.
Oh frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!
"He'll pester once again", you say;
I guess you're right, but let dismay
Be put aside.
Perhaps this eejit's urge is sated?
We may not have communicated
Why hit-and-run is rude, and grated;
At least we tried.
How extraordinarily annoying :/
That's even worse... it implies there are many people who think this is a sensible behaviour!
Digging through the logs, I have a not-very-well-supported guess as to which university this might be coming from, but still can't think of anything useful to do.
Looks like it has returned or at least spawned an imitator. If it's not the same person (can anyone run an IP check?) then it's the same bad manners.
Also cross-posted verbatim to MSE without acknowledgment.
This does not seem like the same person (the writing style is somewhat different, as is the willingness to engage in comments) but it does seem strange that this vice of unmotivated matrix questions by anonymous users only ever happens in real 3-dimensional space. Is there some optimization problem, perhaps with a geometric or mechanical interpretation, that I am missing?
As this seems to have become the thread for Will and me to note occurrences of unmotivated matrix analysis, even ones that aren't from the original miscreant(s), here's one which seems reluctant to either state motivation or demonstrate previous work. Noted here in case it gets deleted.
In all seriousness, do these people think that fuller questions will allow unscrupulous MO-frequenting birds of prey to swoop down and steal the prize? Do they fear that admitting this is something they have been asked to do and can't do will invite a hail of snobbish ridicule? Or have they just never been encouraged to ask questions in a helpful way?
Well, the non-deleted ones have substantial stuff in their answers, so they should stay so.
Somebody is trying to crowdsource solving an open problem?
Looks like a totally reasonable plan to me.
Darij, I thought crowdsourcing could be done transparently, without subterfuge? Or is this one of these "get off my lawn you varmints" moments that I seem to be having with increasing frequency?
I was just trying to be sarcastic.