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Questions tagged [asking-questions]

Questions specifically about the process of asking questions on this site.

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51 votes
4 answers
4k views

How to write a good MathOverflow question?

How do I write a good MathOverflow question? Got any advice for me?
Kim Morrison's user avatar
  • 7,600
16 votes
5 answers
751 views

What should the modal window for first-time askers say?

When a user asks their very first question on a Stack Exchange site, they are shown a modal window with some introductory advice. As explained in the March 2020 announcement of this feature, there is ...
Tim Campion's user avatar
  • 61.9k
25 votes
4 answers
1k views

Should users be shown some basic information before posting the first question? [duplicate]

In an answer to another question discussing possibilities how to decrease the number of off-topic questions1 it was mentioned that: Perhaps we should force a person to read the rules before posting ...
Martin Sleziak's user avatar
21 votes
4 answers
780 views

Customize the modal window for the first-time askers [duplicate]

When a user asks their very first question on a Stack Exchange site, they are shown a modal window with a short advice. The content can be either a generic message or it can be customized for a ...
Martin Sleziak's user avatar
10 votes
6 answers
451 views

Revising the help page on "What topics can I ask around here?"

This is a freestanding post taking its content from a previous discussion on the modal window for first-time askers. Thanks to Martin Sleziak and Tim Campion for the encouragement to post it ...
user avatar
23 votes
2 answers
1k views

Should MathOverflow require registration to ask a question?

Probably anybody visiting this site regularly noticed that quite often there are posts which are not at MO-level and quite frequently also of very low quality. (Many of them are simply copy-paste of ...
Martin Sleziak's user avatar
12 votes
0 answers
1k views

Why is my question apparently not research-level?

I just posted this question a few hours ago, and it's already had two votes to close for being off-topic (i.e., not of "research-level mathematics"). Considering it's ultimately a question about ...
Kieren MacMillan's user avatar
8 votes
3 answers
897 views

Feature: Making the MO-guidelines visible while editing questions?

I noticed that some of the MO questions that get closed are clear-cut going against the MO-guidelines eg. "here is the link to my new result" or "here is the jpg file of my homework ...
Thomas Kojar's user avatar
  • 4,459
7 votes
1 answer
1k views

How to ask multiple very specific questions about a paper?

I'm slowly going through some topos theory papers by Lawvere. In almost every paper, there are many small sayings and sometimes entire sentences which I do not understand and have never explicitly ...
Arrow's user avatar
  • 10.3k
5 votes
0 answers
119 views

When we close questions and suggest MSE, should we link to their How to Ask? [duplicate]

When we close questions by saying MathOverflow is for mathematicians to ask each other questions about their research. See Math.StackExchange to ask general questions in mathematics. ...should the ...
user avatar
15 votes
1 answer
753 views

Are "has this been studied before" questions on topic?

I have a fairly elementary question but rather than feeding it straight to the wolves I thought I would ask it here. Well, via a more general question: Are questions of the form "has $X$ been ...
JP McCarthy's user avatar
6 votes
1 answer
282 views

Should I edit this question or make a new question?

Should the Grothendieck ring of varieties be K_0 of numerical motives? I want to change it to: 1) Asking about after tensoring with $\Qb$ 2) Asking if there is a map in some direction and if ...
David Corwin's user avatar
  • 15.1k
1 vote
0 answers
54 views

Should I rewrite my question, or create a new one

I posed this question two days ago, which effectively asks "Has X hard-to-describe special case on Barnette's Conjecture been proven?". In retrospect, I believe it was a poor question. What I now ...
Zach Hunter's user avatar
  • 3,413