Questions tagged [discussion]

The question you're asking is designed to solicit opinions or best-practices on a particular topic, with the goal of reaching community consensus.

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130 votes
58 answers
18k views

Best of MathOverflow, or papers inspired by MathOverflow

This is a place to collect MathOverflow success stories! Was some of your research inspired by something on MathOverflow? Do you know questions & answers that led to interesting research? ...
15 votes
3 answers
964 views

Frequently asked questions about tagging on MathOverflow

Due to several discussions on the main site, I am asking this question concerning the best practices for tagging questions on MathOverflow. Unfortunately, the relevant documentation page https://...
14 votes
2 answers
862 views

Revamping the closure reasons in 2022

Prompted by Gro-Tsen's recent meta question, it appears that now may be a good time to rethink our site-specific close reasons here on MathOverflow. Background: If you have sufficient rep, you can ...
  • 51.1k
48 votes
16 answers
5k views

Interesting (and not sufficiently answered) questions on math.SE

In light of the generally positive response to this meta-thread, I am creating this to help advertise (and hopefully fully resolve) "interesting" questions on math.SE. I'm not really certain what the ...
36 votes
5 answers
4k views

History of MathOverflow

What is history of this site? When and by whom was it created? What were the important milestones of this site?
21 votes
1 answer
2k views

My question was closed on MO because it is not research level. Where should I ask instead?

If a question is closed (put on hold) on MathOverflow as off-topic for not being research level-question, but it is still a question about mathematics. What might be a suitable place for such question?...
16 votes
5 answers
1k views

Do we have an unofficial quota on how many old questions one should bump for minor edits in a single day?

I noticed tonight that a well-intentioned user has been doing a lot of minor edits of formatting of old questions with the effect of filling most of the active question list with old questions bumped ...
26 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 ...
38 votes
29 answers
3k views

Big list of feature requests and suggestions for a fantasy MO 3.0

I feel that MathOverflow is unique in the StackExchange network. There are features which we might want which might be unique to this site, and which might not be immediate feature requests or ...
22 votes
4 answers
737 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 ...
17 votes
7 answers
2k views

What's our consensus on people resurrecting old questions just to edit formatting?

I think the title says it all. Personally, as someone who uses the "newest questions" as the front page, I'm not keen on people tweaking questions or answers that seem to have outlived active interest....
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10 votes
1 answer
591 views

Why are MO tags formatted as they are?

I noticed that some of the more frequently used MO tags are formatted according to a certain pattern, e.g.: nt.number-theory pr.probability lo.logic fa.functional-analysis Why are the tags formatted ...
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14 votes
3 answers
1k views

Should we try to re-start manual deletions or is the situation fine anyway?

On MO 1.0 we had, after some discussions and conflicts but still, what I think was a quite smoothly and efficiently working process of deleting "bad" content. It seems with the move to MO 2.0 this ...
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8 votes
8 answers
1k views

Specialized chat rooms

Would there be an interest in having more specialized chat rooms, like the one for homotopy theory that currently exists? So far, the homotopy theory one seems to be fairly successful, and it seems ...
67 votes
6 answers
3k views

The Association Bonus

One new feature that's come along with the transition is the "association bonus", which allows members of Math Stackexchange --- and other sites that are much further removed from the mission of MO ---...
27 votes
8 answers
1k views

New feature - citation helper

At the request of the moderators, we have added a citation helper (based on the citation helper user script by Scott Morrison). If you are familiar with the original script, you will note a few ...
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21 votes
5 answers
2k views

What should be the policy on "open problems" on MO?

The subject of this discussion are questions on "open problems" on MO. There is an existing policy on "open problems" reproduced from the (old) FAQs, which involves an open-problem tag. The ...
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17 votes
3 answers
1k views

Comment template for questions more appropriate for MSE

I think it would be nice to have a comment template that everyone could use when a (new) user asks a question on the site which is clearly more appropriate for MSE. Here's what I've been using today: ...
23 votes
2 answers
1k views

Editing etiquette

What are some general guidelines for editing a MathOverflow post? Are there some "do"s and "don't"s I should know about? (The material that was previously in this question box has been moved to an ...
  • 50.8k
14 votes
3 answers
1k views

List of recurrent technical problems involving MathJax

Edit: I have retagged this question 'feature-request' in an attempt to expedite action on these issues. I request that the MathOverflow developers implement an automatic fix of the issues in the ...
-19 votes
5 answers
2k views

MathOverflow updated site theme is ready for testing!

As part of implementing the new unified themes across the network, we're gradually rolling out updated site themes for each site. As of today, we have enabled your updated site theme for testing. If ...
22 votes
3 answers
1k views

Measures to separate math overflow from the rest of the stack exchange network

It seems that there is a widespread concern about the influence that in many ways the switch to the stack exchange network has on this site. I infer this from the many questions on meta on this ...
  • 25k
39 votes
3 answers
3k views

What shall we do with stone soup?

Sometimes, a question is asked that isn't up to the standards of MathOverflow. Maybe it's worded vaguely, maybe it's too open ended, or maybe the asker fundamentally misunderstood something important. ...
28 votes
2 answers
653 views

Migrating to Math.SE: too many close reasons [duplicate]

As everyone knows, we get a fair number of questions on this site that are not research level, but would be appropriate for http://math.stackexchange.com. As a frequent Math.SE user, I have an ...
26 votes
3 answers
1k views

Has the switch to SE 2.0 increased the rate of low-level / inappropriate questions?

I would be curious to know whether, now that links to MO appear in the footer of every SE 2.0 site, and in the "hot questions" list of the Stack Exchange button, the rate of inappropriate questions ...
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17 votes
4 answers
381 views

What do moderators do?

What do moderators do? Is it just a matter of dealing with posts flagged for moderator attention, or are there other things too?
15 votes
5 answers
647 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 ...
  • 51.1k
34 votes
6 answers
1k views

How can we visually differentiate MathOverflow from MathStackExchange within the constraints of the new design themes?

The new design theme introduced for MO here is now live. Several issues with the new theme were raised in that discussion. I'd like to discuss one of them, which is sort of buried in my answer and ...
  • 51.1k
34 votes
5 answers
1k views

Long-term archiving of MathOverflow

Suppose 'the worst' happens. Stack Exchange folds (commerical entities have been known to), and at the same time the moderators lose all interest and/or decide the despise mathematics. Where would ...
37 votes
1 answer
2k views

Viewing reputation and badges is now opt-in and compatible with the new front page

This announcement is a little late (see the discussion here), but in response to discussions over many years, we (the moderators and board) have implemented a change to the site where by default, ...
  • 41.8k
34 votes
0 answers
609 views

Revamping the closure reasons

Motivation 1 Currently the custom off-topic reasons for MathOverflow read: This question does not appear to be about research level mathematics within the scope defined in the help center. ...
  • 31.9k
16 votes
4 answers
2k views

Tags that encourage off-topic questions

MathOverflow has a few problematic tags which are not inappropriate by themselves but suggest off-topic ideas. A prime example of this is the calculus tag. Sometimes a research-level mathematics ...
5 votes
1 answer
1k views

What are reasons for allowing anonymous voting?

What reasons for anonymity of voting overcome the following objection? A down-vote fails to communicate what is thought to be wrong. Suppose I post a question that says "Doesn't the fact that $2+3=5$...
2 votes
2 answers
560 views

Completely Unexplained Downvotes

I came across this question recently and asked the OP to explain some notation (see my comment below the question). As the OP was addressing my concerns, there was suddenly a down-vote (along with the ...
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1 vote
2 answers
347 views

Is there a way to check all questions/answers posted from a deleted account

Suppose I know an account number, say user313948. Is there any way to check all questions/answers posted by that user?
80 votes
3 answers
3k views

Should we exercise a bit more tolerance towards newcomers?

What bothers me quite a bit is that many people come to MO to get some help with their mathematical problems and are met with nothing but our standard "closed as not research level" verdict and a few ...
  • 53.5k
47 votes
4 answers
2k views

"Stack Overflow Isn’t Very Welcoming." --- are we?

There is a new posting on the Stackoverflow blog, entitled Stack Overflow Isn’t Very Welcoming. It’s Time for That to Change. A quote: Too often, someone comes here to ask a question, only to be ...
15 votes
4 answers
587 views

How to emphasize MathOverflow's best content?

There have been a few efforts to do this, such as the Best of MathOverflow thread. We could do more in this direction and this could have interesting repercussions. Vidit Nanda recently suggested that ...
14 votes
3 answers
4k views

What is our policy on asking about correctness of preprints?

We talked about this a lot on the old meta 1, 2 but I don't see a concise statement of policy that I can link to, so I'm asking a meta question in hope of generating consensus on such a statement.
9 votes
6 answers
422 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 ...
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7 votes
2 answers
505 views

What would be good place to list unresolved bounties?

Probably at least some MathOverflow users have been in a situation like this. I have placed a bounty on some question in hope to get an answer (or a better answer or a specific type of answer, for ...
25 votes
1 answer
1k views

Using Math Overflow to check whether or not a proof is correct

A user named Jürgen Böhm recently posted two questions which boiled down to checking whether or not his proof is correct. I left a comment on the second one saying that I don't think this is ...
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22 votes
13 answers
2k views

2021 Moderator election: suggestions for nominees?

As you may have seen, the nominations for the 2021 moderator election will be open on March 29. Per StackExchange rules, MO users are expected to nominate themselves for the election. For some ...
  • 42.6k
14 votes
2 answers
613 views

Recent suggested tag wiki edits

Today [Apr 21 '16] and yesterday there were a considerable number of suggested edits to previously empty tag wikis and tag wiki excerpts (browse here; viewing the full list requires >=10K points, I ...
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23 votes
4 answers
2k views

Editing titles to include $\mathfrak{LaTeX \; Math}$

Should question titles, which sometimes intentionally avoid LaTeX math for those who choose faster rendering, be edited to insist upon LaTeX math? A recent instance that prompted my question is "two ...
9 votes
1 answer
375 views

Questions answered in a comment

It may happen that a question has zero answers, but is actually already answered satisfactorily in a comment. An example is this question. I think this is somewhat misleading, as the "0 answers" ...
  • 18.3k
6 votes
0 answers
442 views

What is the correct way to handle questions with deprecated tags?

Occasionally some tags on MathOverflow are deprecated - it is decided that they should no longer be used. If a deprecated tag is only used in a few questions, then it can be removed manually - the ...
66 votes
1 answer
10k views

Why is "what is the difference between mathoverflow and math.stackexchange?" not prominently displayed?

It is a truth not-quite-universally acknowledged that a newish Stack Exchange user in possession of the knowledge that there are two sites named "Math Overflow" and "Math.StackExchange" will be in ...
  • 101
20 votes
3 answers
2k views

Formatting a citation to a MathOverflow answer

What's a good way to format a citation to a MathOverflow post in a paper? Here is a first draft (with hyperlink, and assuming it's reference number 16, say), but maybe people can think of ...
31 votes
9 answers
1k views

Privacy of software-generated links to questions and answers

Recently I noticed that the software inserts the id of the currently logged in user in the “share” link of any MathOverflow question or answer. When one is logged out, the “share” link comes out ...

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