# Should we merge check-my-proof and check-my-algorithm?

Should we merge and into a new tag ?

• I forget, but did we already decide against doing away with these tags? Frankly, they seem like really lousy tags. Feb 23 '13 at 7:45
• @Patrick87 if so, then both should be removed. Anyways having the two of them now is not good, Feb 23 '13 at 8:42
• I don't think there is a problem with having both. Checking proofs is not the same as checking algorithms IMHO. @Patrick87, I don't remember deciding that we should remove these. They are useful and describe the contents of questions. Feb 24 '13 at 5:01
• @Kaveh If you say so. They're meta-tags, and in general, I think meta-tags are worse than useless. I don't remember banning them, either, which is why I asked. Feb 24 '13 at 5:08
• @Kaveh but for questions about CFG (for instance), the solution is neither an algorithm nor a proof, just a CFG. That's why check-my-answer or check-my-solution fit best. Feb 24 '13 at 5:13
• @Patrick87, I don't think of them as meta-tags, they describe the content of the questions. Feb 24 '13 at 5:19
• @RanG., I think it is not an algorithm in the usual sense so check-my-proof however merging them into check-my-answer can be also fine. Feb 24 '13 at 5:20
• ps: in general I think these type of questions are not good, the better way to ask them is to post the question separately and then the user can post his answer and other can post other answers. "Is the follow proof correct?" questions seem to localized to me as they are not of much use for others, so I would favor to ban them in that format and have a guideline that asks their OPs to reformat them in a jeopardy format. If we do that then we can also get rid of these tags. Feb 24 '13 at 5:20

## 4 Answers

Posting my old comment as an answer:

Generally I think these types of questions are not good, particularly if the OP's answer is correct: not much learned from saying "yes, it is correct". These question are also usually "too-localized" and not of much use to anyone else.

I would favor a ban on these kind of question in that format and have a guideline that asks OPs to reformat their question in a jeopardy format (we can give examples and guidelines about how they can restate it in a better way).

I think a better way to ask these questions can be to post the question separately and then the user can post his answer and other can post other answers. There are mainly two kinds:

1. the OP just wants to get a approval of his answer (e.g. it is homework and wants to make sure his answer is correct), in which case it is a "not-a-real-question", or

2. the OP has doubts about some part of his solution, i.e. has an idea of what can be wrong in his answer and wants a clarification to understand the material better. In this case the OP should restate the question asking more generally for explanation/clarification/understanding of the part they are not sure about in their solution, this way the question is also useful for others.

If we do these then we can also get rid of these tags as we would no longer need these tags.

We have since come to agreement to disallow such questions. I created the synonym in order to group "offenders" more clearly.

(I don't have enough reputation to add this as a comment yet....)

I don't think you should ban them. Merge, maybe, but I think that one of the nice things about CS.SE is that it is a little more friendly to non-experts. As the CStheory.SE people say of their site, "experts attract non-experts, but not the reverse."

So the elites have a site...why can't amateurs have a site where some of the "lamer" or "too localized" questions are tolerated? Of course I see the other side--it's perceived as annoying to have questions that aren't relevant to everyone. But I think it would be nice to have a site where users can operate a little more freely...not everyone on this site has been to grad school, and I think having the ability to get a proof or algorithm checked is useful. There is not much that is lost by having a couple of "localized" questions.

I would prefer to have made this into a comment, but I can't yet.

• It likely needs experts to check proofs as you have them in mind, so there is really no point in posting them in an "amateur" venue. The route is to become accepted as competent by the experts, and then propose the results to them in improved form.
– Raphael Mod
May 15 '13 at 19:43

I believe Haskell B. Curry and William A. Howard would be interested by your discussion and conclusions.

This is intended as an answer.