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63 votes

Welcoming new user: on a recent question about connections

I just want to comment, I think at this point, fighting and unpleasantness about whether questions are appropriate is a much bigger problem for the site than the presence of less-advanced questions on ...
Ben Webster's user avatar
  • 44.3k
51 votes

How can we attract more grad students?

I'll go against my best judgement and will reply to this with my own perception. First of all, the best thing would be to ask graduate students directly. I don't know if there are any active efforts ...
AT0's user avatar
  • 1,447
39 votes

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

It depends. I think we don't want to be welcoming with a new user posting "plz solve teh linear algebra homework <see photo>". These questions deserve to be closed and downvoted into oblivion; ...
Federico Poloni's user avatar
35 votes

Welcoming new user: on a recent question about connections

I want to distinguish two different things that were said in the first comment: that the question was not research level and that the question should be migrated to math stackexchange. It is not ...
Will Sawin's user avatar
  • 141k
33 votes

Flood of Similar New User(s)

With regard to Gerhard's response -- which I agree with -- I see a number of things problematic in some of the behavior taking place in the present circumstances. I have no doubt that behind these ...
Todd Trimble's user avatar
  • 52.6k
19 votes

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

The vast majority of people who write the most common low-quality questions are not going to read this page at all. I think the people much more likely to read this page are those, especially graduate ...
Will Sawin's user avatar
  • 141k
18 votes

How can we attract more grad students?

I don't believe MO can do anything to make most grad students comfortable posting here. It wouldn't be compatible with the culture of the site or how its users see it (and some of the comments on this ...
jdc's user avatar
  • 2,984
18 votes

Welcoming new user: on a recent question about connections

I note that frequently users complain about unexplained downvotes and anonymous downvotes. Discouraging comments from users who indeed make a comment of this nature ("this is off-topic") ...
YCor's user avatar
  • 62.3k
15 votes

Should we exercise a bit more tolerance towards newcomers?

I think one of the key issues here is in the comments between fedja and Todd Trimble, and I want to elaborate with it. If someone asks you a question, and you know the answer, and can explain it ...
Will Sawin's user avatar
  • 141k
14 votes

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

I think there are contrasting goals within the group of long term members (the established MathOverflow community, say those who have been posting five years or more to pick an arbitrary division) and ...
Gerhard Paseman's user avatar
12 votes

How can we attract more grad students?

I'm writing this answer as a (pseudo)-grad student who is comfortable using the site, having no real publications or positions under my belt. Disclaimer: Generally I try to avoid using the pronoun 'I' ...
Alec Rhea's user avatar
  • 9,077
11 votes

Should there be a banner with some basic info about MO in the right sidebar?

Here is one possible suggestion what the text in the banner could look like - it is based on the first bullet point from the text displayed to the first-time askers. MathOverflow is a site for ...
Martin Sleziak's user avatar
10 votes

Flood of Similar New User(s)

Do(es)n’t said user(s) simply exploit the loophole once detected by @MattF. (newly created accounts can spend the association bonus on bounties), and wouldn’t that part be solved by following his then-...
Francois Ziegler's user avatar
10 votes

Flood of Similar New User(s)

I believe that I can give a partial answer to your question. Looking at some of the profiles that you have listed, they seem to be all unregistered users. I used to do something similar (but with only ...
Alex M.'s user avatar
  • 5,357
10 votes

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

The new Custom Ask Advice that is shown to new users is now live. Here is what it looks like right now on the site:
Yaakov Ellis's user avatar
10 votes
Accepted

How to make welcoming comments on "homework-like" posts that will be closed?

I suggest leaving a comment along these lines (if it seems appropriate): "This site is dedicated to questions of math research. I'm not sure there is a research angle to your question. If there ...
Gerry Myerson's user avatar
9 votes

How can we attract more grad students?

This is a very difficult question. However, I think that we could attract more graduate students (actually, more people in general) following three lines of action. Many of these things have been ...
Francesco Polizzi's user avatar
9 votes

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

Interesting topic. Good thread. I have been here only a month, and so far I find these forums to be a terrific resource. I'm not seeing how a forum such as MO (or to a lesser extent MSE) even could ...
Mike's user avatar
  • 1,042
8 votes

Should we exercise a bit more tolerance towards newcomers?

There are people persons. There are professional mathematicians. Some people are both. I suspect very few attend this forum regularly. (I guess a notable person among this few is Anton Geraschenko.)...
Gerhard Paseman's user avatar
8 votes

How do off-topic question askers find MO?

Though I haven't technically asked a single off-topic question yet, I theoretically could have, because, due to my familiarity with Wikipedia policies forbidding original research (from whose ...
7 votes

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

Vote up / down if you think Martin Sleziak's proposal should / should not be modified to use the phrase "research-level mathematics" rather than "mathematics at graduate level or higher&...
Tim Campion's user avatar
  • 62.6k
7 votes

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

Vote up / down if you would / would not prefer to add to Martin Sleziak's proposal some language about cross-posting. Voting for this change does not preclude voting for any other change as well; we ...
Tim Campion's user avatar
  • 62.6k
7 votes

Flood of Similar New User(s)

I think it is reasonable to be concerned, if only for the fact that we do not know what the ramifications of this behaviour are. However, I think it is better to describe the behaviour and call out ...
Gerhard Paseman's user avatar
7 votes

Customize the modal window for the first-time askers

We used to have a page about how to ask a question on MO back on MO 1.0 that was quite good. The current one is kinda crap. I would suggest bringing back the old text explaining how to ask a ...
Harry Gindi's user avatar
  • 19.5k
7 votes

How do off-topic question askers find MO?

When I type "ask a math question" into Google (incognito mode), MathOverflow is the second link. Of course, Google tailors results to my past search history, but I would wager that this is a ...
Najib Idrissi's user avatar
6 votes

Customize the modal window for the first-time askers

Let me give some initial suggestion. (I hope that somebody proposes a better version - seeing many well-written posts both on main and on meta, clearly many MO users are able to do so.) I have tried ...
Martin Sleziak's user avatar
5 votes

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

Concerning the first proposed edit, its modifications are unlikely to make things more clear for users asking low-quality questions. In particular, such users rarely have any exposure to graduate ...
Dmitri Pavlov's user avatar
5 votes

How can we attract more grad students?

I think the software limitations are a big part of the problem. In particular, how comments are integrated with questions and answers. The comments appear to give an opportunity for people to have a ...
Steven Gubkin's user avatar
5 votes

Are new users with inappropriate questions given help or rudely dismissed?

Thanks for bringing this to our attention. In this particular case, I had deleted the question by mistake. Someone had flagged this question/answer as suspicious, and I came to it right after working ...
S. Carnahan's user avatar
  • 45.3k

Only top scored, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible