# 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.

924
questions

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### Can external links to MO questions/answers be made more informative?

On several occasions I have sent by email links to MO questions or answers. They appear just like this - say, https://mathoverflow.net/a/287214/41291
Is it difficult to achieve that such links in ...

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**1**answer

241 views

### Change a question after counter example

This following question was motivated by this question, though many of similar nature can be found throughout MO.
The Problem: The question asks whether any bound exist on an expression, and ...

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**1**answer

176 views

### Should we delete or reopen these old posts?

The purpose of this question is to link to various old (say $\succeq 1$ year old) closed posts, mostly by no longer active users, most of which are reasonable candidates for deletion, and a few for ...

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**5**answers

982 views

### close/reopen wars on Mathoverflow

Sometimes one sees a situation like with this question:
Cargo Cult Science in mathematics?
which goes on hold and back again a number of times.
Should there be a limit to the number of such rounds?
...

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**2**answers

416 views

### Why does Mathoverflow not like opinions?

I've learnt that mathematics is largely about people and their experiences. The mathematics and the people are entwined in a way that should be celebrated. So with this in mind, why does Mathoverflow ...

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**1**answer

441 views

### May I know why is my question on hold when it is clearly research-level?

This is my question
https://mathoverflow.net/questions/262039/central-properties-of-the-integers-mathbbz-over-other-structures-with-sum
I think the question is clear enough and it is easy to ...

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votes

**3**answers

251 views

### Is it ok to ask for explanation of content in question?

I can not explain with out taking an example.
See this question Gauge theory on schemes.
I hear "Gauge theory" every now and then and wanted to know what it is about. I did not enjoy reading ...

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**1**answer

365 views

### Legitimate questions put on hold with no comments, no notification, and no chance to improve

My question was put on hold as unclear. I see a number of issues in this:
No intent was made to clarify the question via comments: it was just shut up. I consider it rude and unhelpful.
No reason was ...

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votes

**1**answer

185 views

### How to edit tags correctly?

I attempted to edit the tags for this question. I got the message:
This edit introduces tags that do not help to define the topic of the question. Tags should help to describe what the question is ...

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**1**answer

455 views

### Why this question is off-topic?

Given an even function how to obtain the most close odd function and vise versa?
Why it was closed?

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**1**answer

204 views

### Proposed merger of tags

I would like to get some reactions to the idea of merging several tags under an umbrella "infinitesimal". The motivation is that the individual tags each have few questions, and the existence of ...

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votes

**2**answers

609 views

### Criteria of considering relevance of the question to the domain of research topics

Please look at
https://mathoverflow.net/questions/175757/conjecture-related-to-distinct-unique-permutations-of-digits.
In my view, it is clearly a specific research question - it is not a general ...

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**1**answer

146 views

### Some concession for first couple of questions posted by new user

which is more important between connection and metric?
This question was posted by a new user before 40 minutes.
It was not a spam post.
It is not clearly mentioned what the question is.
...

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votes

**1**answer

145 views

### Restriction on editing closed questions

Guidelines to prove that $2^{\sqrt{2}}$ is a transcendental number? question bumped into https://mathoverflow.net/ after making an edit.
I am not sure if that adds anything to the question.
Should ...

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votes

**1**answer

158 views

### New tags: Functional Data Analysis, Time Series, Functional Time Series

In my opinion there should be at least the following two tags, I couldn't find:
"Time Series",
"Functional Data Analysis".
Since functional data are used more and more and time series as a ...

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votes

**2**answers

858 views

### Politeness on MO/MetaMO

On at least two occasions some advanced MO users included in their comments phrases which were less than polite. I hope that these are isolated instances or else I would quietly and simply leave MO ...

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votes

**1**answer

476 views

### Can we change the reference to “professional mathematicians” on the main page?

I'm personally quite bothered by the statement on the MathOverflow main page (when not logged in) that "MathOverflow is a question and answer site for professional mathematicians." It seems both false ...

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**1**answer

169 views

### Giving “bountied questions” more visibility weight

What community thinks about idea giving "bountied questions" more attention ?
I almost never look on the tab "featured", I guess I am not alone. So I guess such questions deserve little attention.
...

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votes

**1**answer

193 views

### Should there be a separate tag for videos?

Sometimes there are questions about videos, movies, documentaries, etc. (I'll add a small sample below.)
Would it be useful to have a separate tag for this topic? This could possibly help when ...

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votes

**2**answers

511 views

### How do people determine if other people's questions are research level or not?

I post a question here:
https://mathoverflow.net/questions/159016/on-convexity-of-function-in-c10-infty
(now deleted).
Obviously, those who closed it think it is too elementary.
But how do they know ...

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votes

**3**answers

341 views

### How to ask general questions about research directions in given area

Here are examples of two questions which I would like to ask. I am afraid to ask them, because they might be closed. The question about 3-manifolds might survive. The question about sporadic groups ...

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**1**answer

299 views

### Regarding my question: “Can only the constructible sets be proven to exist in $ZF$…”

I am concerned that the 'bad reviews' regarding my most recent question are more harassment than helpful. They seem to come from distinctions between $Def$ (or what I call $\mathscr P_{Def}$), $\...

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**2**answers

345 views

### Area 51 Mathematics Open Community Reviews

Following the discussions in
Area 51 community peer review
and links therein, I have created the following proposal
Mathematics Open Community Reviews
hoping to get things started. The proposal ...

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votes

**1**answer

298 views

### Should my question be closed?

See the question "On the number of $n$-perfect numbers". Some people claimed that it should be closed because I know the answer while I don't simply because they are hard open problems in number ...

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**1**answer

367 views

### Should we create an Erdős tag?

I was thinking about creating tags for some famous or important people, like Erdős (that already exists, as pointed out by Joonas: erdos), that could be used for questions related to their work.
...

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**1**answer

242 views

### Reputation recalculated: only even reputation now?

So +1 get 10 points for answers and questions, and -1 give -2 points. It is easy to see that users only have even reputation numbers now. Or did I miss a reputation-changing mechanism? (If not, why ...

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**1**answer

247 views

### Why is a question asking for powerful arguments for intuitionism not a research level question?

I'd like to read some well-vetted and modern pieces arguing for intuitionism (the "intuitionist stance"?), which I take to be:
As the intuitionist sees it, the rules of logic used by mathematicians ...

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**1**answer

188 views

### Would this question be appropriate for (main) MO?

Note #1: title of this post was modified as per a great suggestion from Todd Trimble
Note #2 ( to site moderators): I truly consider this question to be a legit "meta" question about the MathOverflow ...

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votes

**2**answers

2k views

### Why was this question about axiom of choice and the Wiles's proof of FLT deleted?

Why was this question about axiom of choice and the Wiles's proof of FLT deleted?
Namely the question was as follows:
Does the Wiles's proof of Fermat's last theorem rely on axiom of choice?
[I ...

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**3**answers

608 views

### VIndictive downvoting--what can be done about such childishness, errh, lack of professionalism?

Clearly, from my reputation record, there has been some vindictive downvoting in the last three days or so. MathOverfflow is a community of people, not saints, and things like this are expected to ...

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**2**answers

362 views

### Why a Question gets Down vote and its Answer gets Upvotes?

Please, visit my question.
You will see the post has 9 downvotes and one of the answers got 7 up-votes. Moreover, the answer that got 7 votes is a mere try, not a complete answer. On the other hand ...

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258 views

### The reason for putting on hold a question

Why was this question put on hold? It seems to be fairly specific and it is about mathematics. You could argue that it is slightly meta-mathematical; would it then be appropriate on meta MO?

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**1**answer

585 views

### Restriction on Number of edits

Book about fluid dynamics asked Apr 13 '10 edited 1 hour ago
Are there examples of conjectures supported by heuristic arguments that have been finally disproved? asked 21 hours ago edited 2 hours ...

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**1**answer

240 views

### What to do when it seems that downvotes are not justified (for example, when they are directed “against” the person and not “against” the question)?

This question now has a score of $-2$ and it could be that it will be lowered still.
It is an elementary attempt to resolve an open problem.
I shared it with you because I am an amateur and almost ...

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**2**answers

305 views

### Should metaMO allow actual requests for mathematical consulting services to be remunerated either by honoraria or by “usual and customary” fees?

Should metaMO allow actual requests for mathematical consulting services to be remunerated either by honoraria or by "usual and customary" fees?
If so, should MO receive reasonable "broker" fees for ...

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**1**answer

195 views

### Bumping the question if it receives upvotes but no answer

Suppose a question is posted 3 days ago and it got decent number of up votes, say $5$ but did not receive any answer yet and not even comments which says some thing in direction of an answer..
In ...

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**4**answers

698 views

### Migrating a question which is already posted on the other site [closed]

When a question begins by saying "This question appeared earlier on math.stackexchange.com" and links to that earlier posting, how does it make sense to migrate it to math.stackexchange.com (thereby ...

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votes

**1**answer

486 views

### How to properly ask for the (non)existence of hypothetical mathematical objects on MO?

A question from a rookie on MO.
During my research, I introduced in my physico-mathematical equations some "nasty", "problematic" mathematical objects (namely functional integrals) that are at least ...

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votes

**1**answer

1k views

### Protest for my account suspension [closed]

I posted this question about two month ago. Shortly after this, I got a moderator private message.
It says:
We've noticed that you have a pattern of engaging in lengthy discussions in comments, ...

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**2**answers

371 views

### Is this site not intended to help mathematicians and aspiring mathematicians become more informed about the subject?

My account says "we are no longer accepting questions from this account". Although some of my questions have been negatively received (and taking into account the fastidious nature of MathOverflow), I ...

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**1**answer

326 views

### How the moderators/admin decide the significance/research orientation of any question before closing it? is it intuitive to them?

I am not sure whether there exists some kind of objectivity in taking a decision in closing a question. For example my question https://mathoverflow.net/questions/226226/a-symmetric-function was ...

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**1**answer

364 views

### Are these close-votes cast correctly?

I asked this question on MSE. It received up-votes and one answer that seems imprecise and unsatisfactory to me. Then I posted it here on MathOverflow for answers of higher quality, and it was also ...

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289 views

### Would it be okay/interesting to ask a survey type question?

I would be interested in asking a question which asks mathematicians who visit the site the following question:
1) What research topic are you actively working on right now?
2) Why are you ...

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347 views

### Should we encourage non-professionals to ask hard questions if that is good for the future development of the mathematics? [closed]

There is a story about Gauss being "unimpressed by FLT, pointing out (after finding a proof of the n=3 case) that in number theory it’s very easy to come up with problems that are very hard.".
But, ...

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575 views

### More precisely defining the scope of mathoverflow's subject matter

A few months back someone asked about the difference between questions appropriate for mathoverflow.net and those appropriate for math.stackexchange.com. And someone answered, saying something along ...

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**1**answer

246 views

### Can the Math Overflow look be changed? [closed]

I love the math sites but I rarely visit this MathOverflow site because of its look. The color and appearance is not appealing. I know this will sound weird but the mathematics is cool, maybe they can ...

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votes

**1**answer

343 views

### Is Mathoverflow aware of its role of popularizing mathematics? [closed]

I read book of prof. Michał Heller. He received award of Hugo Steinhaus for popularizing science. In his speech he mentioned Steinhaus in anecdote. In 1952 Secretary of PAN (Polish Academy of Science) ...

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162 views

### adding n cat lab tag

I propose adding n cat lab tag with an intention to discuss mathematics that is written in https://ncatlab.org/nlab/show/HomePage.
As https://ncatlab.org/nlab/show/HomePage has large amount of ...

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436 views

### The question 'Mathematical work of Jonathan Gleason' disappeared

The question
https://mathoverflow.net/questions/291518/mathematical-work-of-jonathan-gleason
was deleted by some unknown person, not long after Jonathan Gleason passed away. I am shocked with the ...

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**1**answer

222 views

### Answering off-topic questions

What is MO's exact policy on answering or not answering off-topic questions? Assuming there is some well-defined policy. My guess is: you are allowed to answer off-topic questions and if somebody ...