Questions tagged [on-topic]

For discussions and questions on the appropriateness (for the main site) of a question or a certain type of question.

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12 votes
2 answers
490 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 ...
22 votes
5 answers
2k views

How should we react to the existence of Math Educators SE?

As was previously announced at meta, there is now an SE site for mathematics education (MESE). My broad questions is this: Should we react to this somehow? (More specific questions are below.) Does ...
10 votes
1 answer
480 views

Could we add another reason for closing that's more appropriate for "check this (dis)proof of RH"-type questions?

I wanted to vote to close this question which claims to disprove the Riemann Hypothesis, but I realized that, even though we get questions of this kind occasionally, none of the reasons to close is ...
3 votes
0 answers
144 views

Would this question be appropriate on the main site?

I would like to ask a "big list" style question on the main site. The question would be "How do we pronounce the names of famous mathematicians?". Each answer would be an audio ...
4 votes
0 answers
436 views

Is this soft question acceptable?

Edited version: What are great examples of comprehensively archived mathematical correspondence (including both handwritten and electronic items)? Previous version : How should mathematicians archive ...
-3 votes
1 answer
99 views

How to formulate a question for a Mathoverflow forum?

Can the following question be posted? “Where could an error be in the proposed proof of Fermat Last Theorem? Info about the author, proof and preliminary validation is at (link)”. How should the ...
10 votes
1 answer
927 views

About if questions in Research papers can be asked on MathOverflow

I am new to MathOverflow. I am a master of mathematics student. I wanted to ask if questions in research papers ( regarding what I am not able to understand in the paper ) can be asked on ...
2 votes
1 answer
292 views

What if I'm not sure about what area of math a problem lies?

One student asked me how to solve a problem and the only way of solving it that came to me seems hopeless to find an answers. It occurred to me that I may using a wrong approach to it. How could I ask ...
0 votes
0 answers
122 views

Is this partial differential equation on topic for Mathoverflow?

I came across this differential equation. I'm not sure if it's research level, but I think it might be: $$u\frac{\partial}{\partial u}\left(u\frac{\partial f}{\partial u}\right) + v\frac{\partial}{\...
14 votes
0 answers
587 views

To which extent can one modify another's question?

One highly off-topic question of real analysis was asked in the main site by a new user. One user sent, 1 hour later, a long answer going far beyond the the question, and then, 12 hours later, edited ...
2 votes
0 answers
173 views

Asking whether this question will be suitable and hence answered by people on MO ? ( I will use career and advice tag)

I am thinking of asking this question on the MO website which is due to the fact that how should I write/ explain the gap in my CV while applying for PHD programs in 2022. Very brief of the situations ...
1 vote
0 answers
153 views

Self advertising and posting a candidate constructive proof

I would like to learn about appropriateness of posting a candidate constructive proof that decides a conjecture or open question and asking for counter examples that render the proof incorrect. The ...
21 votes
2 answers
760 views

How do off-topic question askers find MO?

Apologies if this has been addressed on Meta before (it's a little hard to know the right keywords to search for Meta questions with). Question: Has there been any systematic attempt to try to figure ...
12 votes
1 answer
529 views

Can I ask a question on MathOverflow and also on another site?

Sometimes one might ask a question on a website such as Mathematics Stack Exchange which is comparable but not identical to MathOverflow, and then decide to post the same question on MathOverflow. ...
11 votes
2 answers
340 views

(When) are "career advice" questions on-topic here? If and when such a question is on-topic, what to keep in mind in answering such a question?

We have a tag career and a tag advice. We don't have a flood of questions under these tags, but for several reasons I think it would also be appropriate for us to have a bit more guidance on meta ...
1 vote
1 answer
146 views

Is this the right community for "under-the-hood" math questions?

I've posted a few questions in the Mathematics Stack Exchange community asking about theoretical concerns, such as "Why is $\frac{\frac{1}{x}}{\frac{1}{x^2}+1}=\frac{x}{x^2+1}$ true for all $x$?&...
12 votes
1 answer
1k views

Is this an appropriate MathOverflow question: can I ask for some intuition and "excitement" behind the Dynamical Mordell-Lang conjecture?

I am a math undergraduate at my local university, and I have decided to make it a habit to attend the weekly seminars that are given by the faculty. Today, the talk was on the Dynamic Mordell-Lang ...
0 votes
2 answers
960 views

Is it appropriate to ask why a textbook on nonlinear algebra not well known?

I am wondering if it would be worthwhile to ask why a certain textbook and/or its authors (Dolotin and Morozov) are not well known. From the description of the book: This unique text presents the ...
1 vote
0 answers
84 views

Appropriateness and cross-posting

I am interested in this question on math.stackexchange. To me it is interesting because while it looks "obvious" that there isn't a solution with 6 turns (I have some very partial results ...
11 votes
0 answers
386 views

Utility of Mathematics: Is this question appropriate here, and if not/if so, how can I phrase it better?

I would like to know if this question is appropriate for Math Overflow, and if so, how I can phrase it better to get the best results. Question: I recently spoke with a very nice mathematician who ...
4 votes
0 answers
344 views

Question on topic for Mathoverflow?

My question, asked months ago, was well received. Now... I'm wondering if this question is on-topic for MathOverflow: Consider a semi-Riemannian manifold $\zeta^{2,2}$ with metric, $g=\frac{dxdy}{xy}+...
2 votes
1 answer
237 views

Questions seemingly/apparently/ostensibly too elementary for overlfow

Well I don't really get notifications of flag responses sooo... Nov 6 at 14:01 helpful - I suggest you take this up in meta; there is not enough space to answer here. But there are a number of ...
23 votes
4 answers
2k views

Are professional Physicists, Computer Scientists, Engineers, Economists... not allowed to ask questions at MO?

"MathOverflow is a question and answer site for professional mathematicians." May other professional researchers ask questions at MO? Should they check their credentials at the door? If not, and ...
2 votes
0 answers
257 views

Is asking about name of a curve a research level question?

In my opinion this post is not a research level topic but surprisingly it has been received 22 votes. Is the linked post a research level question and appropriate for MO? I think it is more ...
10 votes
5 answers
2k views

Questions, answers, comments or discussions on aspects of politics relevant to mathematicians on MathOverflow (main or meta)

Given the recent question here on meta about the deletion of a comment stating a political opinion on an answer which also stated a political opinion which sparked a lively debate, let me bring up the ...
0 votes
0 answers
210 views

Would asking this question be permissible on the main site?

I have been working on a problem for days, that I previously mentioned on ComScience StackExchange. The answers were helpful. But, I need more information to develop a polynomial space algorithm. I ...
11 votes
0 answers
317 views

Role of the tag "gm.general-mathematics"

This question is about the tag gm.general-mathematics. A meta question about it already occurred here, but was less specific (and didn't generate much discussion). See also the discussion in the ...
19 votes
3 answers
844 views

Is there a consensus on whether history of mathematics questions are acceptable on MO?

I recently stumbled across an old meta discussion in which some people suggested that history of mathematics questions were off-topic for MO. This took me by surprise and I would like to ask for ...
10 votes
1 answer
529 views

High accuracy computation question on MO

Can I ask question which require very high accuracy calculation with very delicate nature on MO : Ex: calculate: $$S(q)=\int_{x=2}^q\sin^2\left(\frac{π\Gamma(x)}{2x}\right)dx$$ for $q=10^3$ or $10^...
11 votes
1 answer
479 views

Writing a proper MathOverflow question

I am in uni and I'm struggling to write a proper question for this site. I always end up writing too little and people say they need more detail. Sometimes I get a bad rep and criticised for being ...
1 vote
0 answers
123 views

Would this question be suitable for MO?

I have asked What are some efficient ways to keep a note of results of a paper? in Academia SE. Would this question be suitable for MO? Is this better suited in MO than academia?
11 votes
1 answer
680 views

Advice with arXiv: MO Meta or academia SE?

I would like to write a question $Q$ asking for advice about what to do with a note which I wrote (itself based on a self-answer on MathOverflow) which was rejected from the arXiv (something I didn't ...
2 votes
1 answer
333 views

MO is not the place for Mochizuki news

This question Everybody wants to know what's going on with this but we should leave it to Twitter, Reddit, blogs, etc. There is very little actual Mathematics in the discussion I linked to. (I am ...
14 votes
1 answer
564 views

Are questions appropriate if they require answers to be edited in perpetuity?

A recent popular question asks about the status of a certain list of open problems. The OP answered his own question within 13 hours of asking it, and has now edited his answer 26 times, so that it is ...
2 votes
1 answer
254 views

Would this question be appropriate for MathOverflow?

I asked this question in Math Stack Exchange several days ago, but I have received no interaction so far, apart from 4 upvotes. I was considering adding a bounty, but since (to my humble understanding)...
19 votes
1 answer
917 views

Is my question suitable for MO?

Around a month ago I asked a question on ME here. It was well received (got seven up votes). Sadly nobody was able to help much. To get more attention I also placed a bounty on it. Still no luck. The ...
1 vote
0 answers
155 views

Should this be moved to math.stackexchange?

I posted Lower bound on Carmichael Function and just assumed it belonged here, but after thinking about it for some time I'm not so sure. The Carmichael function itself might be encountered by other ...
12 votes
1 answer
503 views

Can I ask about entry-level questions (understanding and definitions) of research-level topics?

I am currently doing a reading on Teichmuller space and I am having trouble understanding some basic definitions. So I asked these two questions on MSE first: Understanding Teichmuller equivalence of ...
0 votes
0 answers
133 views

Would this soft question be appropriate?

A few weeks back on the Math Stack Exchange, I asked this question about "interesting" PDEs. It got (no answers and) some deserved criticism, so I opened a discussion on the Meta there and made some ...
11 votes
0 answers
540 views

Appropriateness of proposed question on applications of number theory in dynamical systems?

Update: the question has now been asked on the main site - Applications of number theory in dynamical systems I am considering asking a reference-request type question on MO about significant and/or ...
21 votes
4 answers
2k views

Publicizing conjectures on MO

This question Positive integers written as $\binom{w}2+\binom{x}4+\binom{y}6+\binom{z}8$ with $w,x,y,z\in\{2,3,\ldots\}$ is basically just a statement of a few conjectures by the asker. The "...
82 votes
4 answers
25k views

Is there a way to discuss the correctness of the proof of the RH by Atiyah in MO?

I just made a question in MO to discuss the correctness of the proof provided by Prof. Atiyah for the Riemann hypothesis (link here: Is there an error in the pre print published by Atiyah with his ...
1 vote
1 answer
700 views

A remark on the abc conjecture

It went/goes something like this: "It [the abc conjecture] resembles a false proposition in that A GREAT DEAL of results would follow from its veracity". I may have read it in the comments of a ...
2 votes
3 answers
241 views

Are help requests to entitle specific papers appropriate for MathOverflow?

The title of a paper has crucial importance, since when it is well thought, other researchers will have more possibilities of finding it when in need, and of wondering its content when encountered. I ...
0 votes
0 answers
71 views

Would this question be on topic?

I'm independently working on some research, and would like to see if there are any other papers on this topic. Can I ask a question on the main site, with a brief description of my work, to see what ...
0 votes
0 answers
117 views

Is this post incompatible with its tags?

Is the following question incompatible with its tags? I really do not understand the reason that some participants voted to closing this question as off topic question: PhD dissertations that ...
22 votes
3 answers
887 views

Pronunciation questions

Every so often, I have a question about the correct pronunciation of a math term/name that I’ve only read, and the answer isn’t on Wikipedia. Some examples from my past: “Hartshorne” (I ended up ...
-11 votes
1 answer
484 views

Should MO perhaps give numerological abductive questions a little more benefit of the doubt

Background: This question is a much more specific version of a metaMO question which was deleted for some odd reason after one poster said in a comment that he agreed with everything said in the post....
2 votes
0 answers
194 views

Why was my question closed while it looks like similar questions are still open?

Recently, my question regarding a good introductory book on mathematical risk theory was closed because it was deemed off-topic and not research-level mathematics. However, I think that multiple ...
2 votes
2 answers
331 views

Is there a clear rule against "check this proof" type questions?

I discovered that the meta question "Questions" of the type "I have written something, please give me feedback" from more than three years ago still does not have any answer, while ...