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21 answers
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Reference: templates for common comments

The purpose of this post is to aggregate several templates for comments useful for the daily moderating of the CS site, e.g., informing the user (usually, new user) when their question is off-topic / ...
5 votes
3 answers
2k views

Homework policy

The accepted answer on this question is our homework policy, adopted by a community poll. The poll rules and outcome are retained below for historical purposes. Rules Below, you will find three ...
  • 12.7k
56 votes
8 answers
15k views

Reference answers to frequently asked questions

Why am I here? If you were sent here, somebody thought that you posted your question too early, that is you don't know facts and/or techniques one would learn in undergraduate courses. This is not ...
17 votes
3 answers
3k views

What to do when the answer is already part of the question

We have recently had this question and this one. Both questions practically contain an answer within the question and ask "is this correct". Assuming the answer they give is correct (like in the ...
  • 20.5k
18 votes
4 answers
4k views

The return of the homework question

It has become a ritual: three times a semester (around 2nd week, midterms and finals) there is a flow of simple, homework-like questions (mostly in the field of automata theory; US education system is ...
  • 20.5k
12 votes
3 answers
1k views

What about list questions?

I know we have some very useful ones on cstheory.SE and I have seen some amusing ones on Stackoverflow. On other sites such as scifi.SE they seem to be banned. What is our stand?
  • 71.5k
7 votes
1 answer
2k views

Questions about correctness of a solution

This question is motivated by the following two examples: one two. Both questions asked about the correctness of their solution to some problem (in these cases, recurrences). Despite one being ...
17 votes
2 answers
2k views

Short reference for LaTeX/MathJax commands

Some users are not familiar with the LaTeX notations, which is perfectly fine, but it would be better if we could have an FAQ/help page that explains the basic commands, in a similar way to the ...
  • 20.5k
18 votes
5 answers
1k views

How to make our cs community very different from the cstheory?

We are now in the third day of private beta with a couple of questions. That is great. However, most of questions here so far are about CS theory, which already have a full-grown site. The overlap is ...
16 votes
6 answers
3k views

A guide to moderating Computer Science Stack Exchange yourself — editing

Editing posts is a basic feature of Stack Exchange: everybody can edit everything (edits may be audited if you have low reputation). Since our site lives and dies with the amount and ratio of useful, ...
  • 71.5k
12 votes
2 answers
493 views

How to deal with questions about crank-heavy topics?

It was bound to happen and thankfully, it did now rather than later: we received the first question about a claim regarding P?=NP. Some topics, in particular this, attract lots of public attention ...
  • 71.5k
6 votes
3 answers
198 views

Should we have a custom close reason for homework assignment dumps?

Since the beginning of the north hemisphere term, we've seen a sharp increase in questions that consist solely of a dump of a homework assignment, where there is no question, only “solve this”. Our ...
35 votes
5 answers
923 views

Computer Science New Site Design

My name is Paweł, I’m a product designer at Stack Exchange. I’m super happy for you, because the process of graduation is about to be concluded! Congratulations to all of you! New Design The new ...
  • 101
19 votes
4 answers
564 views

Towards a policy for hint-only answers

This question is getting old, but the matter is still unresolved. Please contribute by voting on the answers here, or by voicing your opinion if you have something to add to the existing answers! Our ...
  • 71.5k
18 votes
3 answers
6k views

How do I ask a good homework question?

I'm doing some computer science homework and I need help. How should I ask my question here? The existing discussions about homework tend to center around how to answer them and how to moderate them. ...
11 votes
7 answers
518 views

Homework tag discussion

This discussion started in my other question "Will Homework Questions Be Allowed?". Should we allow the tag? It seems that some of our sister sites (Programmers, stackoverflow) have not allowed the ...
3 votes
3 answers
218 views

Programming questions

What should we do about programming questions like this one? Are they on-topic or should they be closed (or migrated to SO)?
  • 21.8k
29 votes
6 answers
1k views

What is Computer Science?

This meta question is intended to be a place to direct people who ask what is Computer Science and answer misconceptions about it. What is Computer Science?
  • 21.8k
23 votes
6 answers
364 views

What makes an answer good, and what makes an answer get feedback?

I have been wondering: does the quality of an answer and its upvotes always correlate? It should, but it obviously does not. Obviously, because not everybody gets all aspects of every answer. ...
  • 71.5k
20 votes
2 answers
527 views

When will CS.SE graduate?

The site has been up for almost more than 2 years. All statistics seems to be reasonably good. The flow of good questions and answers seems to be steady. The need for the site is also clear. ...
  • 21.8k
10 votes
3 answers
233 views

Percentage of answered questions

For a long time now, the statistics of the number of answered questions has been standing on 88%, slightly below the golden standard of 90%. That might be due to a lot of early questions which have ...
9 votes
4 answers
531 views

7 essential meta questions: FAQ

It's well past the time we had an FAQ! What should our site FAQ contain? Propose ideas and wording here. Note that we can only customize the first section, between the first sentence “Computer ...
  • 21.8k
6 votes
2 answers
661 views

Our first list question

We got our first list question. We need a policy how to deal with this and similar questions. Also, how to tag it? Not everybody likes soft-question.
  • 71.5k
5 votes
2 answers
288 views

What should the homework tag mean?

The outcome of the homework tag discussion is not clear so far: there is a slight majority in favor of having a homework tag, but no agreement as to what the tag means. The meanings I've seen proposed ...
2 votes
2 answers
216 views

What constitues an appropriate check-my-proof question?

I've read this, and also run into the unpleasant situation of having my proof that I wanted to get checked closed as "not constructive." I realize that a lot of people consider P vs. NP a "crank ...
16 votes
15 answers
970 views

Community Promotion Ads - 2016

It's 2016 now, and we've made some changes to the sidebar size. And even though I made a sample ad for you guys with the rest of the sample ads, somehow the thread itself didn't get posted. Weird how ...
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14 votes
2 answers
181 views

Will homework questions be allowed?

Since the current FAQs say this site is for students as well as professionals, what will the policy on homework be? What are the guidelines that a homework question should follow if it is to be asked?...
10 votes
4 answers
297 views

Renaming tag `graphs` to `graph-theory` [duplicate]

I suggest that we rename the tag graphs to graph-theory for the following reasons: The word graphs is ambiguous. graph-theory looks more professional. The tag ...
  • 21.8k
9 votes
2 answers
370 views

A guide to moderating Computer Science Stack Exchange yourself — close voting

We've had complaints in the past that too many questions were closed by moderators. And as the site grows, we have more questions in need of closing. We have a growing number of users who can cast ...
7 votes
3 answers
282 views

Scope limits on proof assistants (e.g. Coq)

To what extent are questions about proof assistants on-topic? I see four main classes of questions: Modeling a problem in a formal setting; going from the object of study to the definitions and ...
5 votes
3 answers
144 views

Are programming questions in scope on CS.SE?

There has been several discussions in several meta-posts on this. I think we should settle the issue once and for all. Do you think programming questions should be on-topic or not? What kind of ...
  • 21.8k
4 votes
1 answer
111 views

Are questions about software to solve computer science problems on-topic?

Are questions about software that is specifically designed to solve computer science problems on-topic? The answer may well be “it depends”, so where do we draw the line? For example, is a question ...
3 votes
4 answers
215 views

Computer Science - Stack Exchange: FAQ

Well, we are almost at the 90 days threshold. Let's have another try to write our FAQ. To avoid the pitfalls of the previous attempt, please post entries for FAQ as answers. We can later select and ...
  • 21.8k
3 votes
3 answers
65 views

Close votes that don't apply to the question

This question has, at the time of writing, three close votes. None of them seems appropriate. Off-topic: does not appear to be about computer science... It's a question about decidability of ...
1 vote
1 answer
98 views

Just-a-hint tag

This relates to the following discussion: Homework tag discussion After talking to Gilles in chat about possible solutions to the homework tag problem. The tag just-a-hint was suggested. The purpose ...
  • 425
17 votes
4 answers
315 views

Advertising Computer Science Stack Exchange on other SE sites

Graduated Stack Exchange sites display ads chosen by the community in the right-side bar. “Graduated” means sites that have been around for long enough to no longer be in beta, other than the original ...
15 votes
1 answer
1k views

Should we do anything about questions that are just a scan of a problem in their textbook?

I have seen an increasing number of questions where the author takes a scan/screenshot of part of their textbook and includes this image in their question. Typically, the image contains some exercise ...
  • 149k
15 votes
6 answers
504 views

Inspirations towards a logo for cs.SE

As you know, we are graduating. The last missing puzzle piece is our own design which will be create by Stack Exchange employees at some uncertain point in the future. They are known for listening to ...
  • 71.5k
11 votes
1 answer
265 views

What is the history of the Computer Science site?

Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it. A paraphrase of a quote by "George Santayana" I am new to the Computer Science site and new to SO and have asked a few questions, ...
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10 votes
20 answers
200 views

2015 Moderator Election Q&A - Question Collection

In connection with the moderator elections, we will be holding a Q&A with the candidates. This will be an opportunity for members of the community to pose questions to the candidates on the topic ...
  • 101
10 votes
1 answer
195 views

Self-deleted questions

Once in a while I discover that a question that I had answered got deleted and is nowhere to be found. Presumably the answer wasn't up-voted, so the user could self-delete the question. So far such ...
9 votes
3 answers
137 views

Let's eliminate [tag:check-my-proof]

The tag check-my-proof has the following description in its tag wiki: Questions which also contain a proof or a solution that needs to be checked for correctness and completeness. There are ...
  • 149k
9 votes
1 answer
142 views

Why are there tags for programming languages?

One of the defining factors about this SE is that it's NOT about programming. I recently edited a question which, I was surprised to see, the user had tagged as "C++", and had asked for an ...
  • 29.4k
7 votes
3 answers
447 views

Towards a homework policy

The purpose of this thread is to determine what our homework policy should be, if any. In previous discussions, we saw: Will homework questions be allowed? → Homework questions are allowed, but we ...
5 votes
3 answers
181 views

Policy on stocking the beta with "easy" questions

This is my first time to be involved in a site beta, and I would like to gauge the community's opinion on this subject. Certainly, there are many kinds of questions which we could expect to (...
  • 12.7k
5 votes
3 answers
119 views

Should "hints" be posted as "answers"? [duplicate]

I'm referring to the answer here: The operator $A(L)={w|ww\in L}$. In my opinion, it is completely not accetable as an answer, simply because answer should give a solution. The rules for me are ...
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4 votes
6 answers
168 views

Proposals for tag synonyms [closed]

I can suggest tag synonyms now (and others are soon to follow). Every suggestion will need to be upvoted by at least five users with answer score at least 5 for this tag. This will (as I understand ...
  • 71.5k
4 votes
3 answers
120 views

Should questions about other sciences for computer scientists be on topic?

Consider the question Introductory books on nature sciences behind bioinformatics. Beside the fact that it is a book question and those are arguably always problematic, it seems to be more about ...
  • 71.5k
1 vote
2 answers
67 views

Using ACM or arXiv based tags

Should we use tags based one of these subject classifications? IF yes, which one? The 1998 ACM Computing Classification System (here) arXiv (here)
  • 21.8k
40 votes
0 answers
558 views

Congratulations! Computer Science is graduating!

It's a big day. You've been cleared for graduation by the Stack Exchange Community Team! Computer Science has already met our threshold for graduation-worthy sites, and today joins in the new design-...
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