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From my observations on math.SE over a couple of years and after seeing that this Q&A and this beautiful answer by Willie Wong, and this discussion and wrap up by me, is not getting any attention from audience in here (math.SE) makes me raise a question : (Only my perception, may not be of the majority)

Is the % of population interested towards theoretical aspects of mathematics, diminishing in this community? Majority are interested only in problem solving and fun stuff, and this trend is going to continue in future?

Wonder what can be done in this regard to boost up popular iterest in theoretical aspects of mathematics in general? Are there any good books and literature on this?

Can we create any special tags, badges and sections in this regard, to icrease interest towards theory?

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    $\begingroup$ What exactly are theoretical aspects of mathematics? Are there any others? $\endgroup$ – Michael Greinecker Oct 13 '13 at 9:08
  • $\begingroup$ @MichaelGreinecker : Something like this is just not theory but popular : math.stackexchange.com/q/523824/2987 $\endgroup$ – Rajesh Dachiraju Oct 13 '13 at 9:12
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    $\begingroup$ I have no idea how you got from the Qs and As you link to to that question. I don't know exactly what theoretical math is to you, but I see absolutey no trend indicating that the «majority [is] interested only in problem solving and fun stuff», neither here on MSE nor in real life. $\endgroup$ – Mariano Suárez-Álvarez Oct 13 '13 at 9:18
  • $\begingroup$ @MarianoSuárez-Alvarez : Not just from that example, but my general observation over few years, seeing the voting patterns and quickness in response and comments and number of answers. I had to run pillar to post to get attention to that particular Q&A. $\endgroup$ – Rajesh Dachiraju Oct 13 '13 at 9:21
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    $\begingroup$ @MarianoSuárez-Alvarez I didn't check, but I'm sure the highest voted questions which aren't advice related are all useless games and pretty pictures. There's also a large (?) quantity of questions about seemingly random integrals, (tough integrals which surely aren't part of regular calculus courses). $\endgroup$ – Git Gud Oct 13 '13 at 9:59
  • $\begingroup$ I am pretty sure you did check... $\endgroup$ – Mariano Suárez-Álvarez Oct 13 '13 at 10:00
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    $\begingroup$ @MarianoSuárez-Alvarez I don't know if you're being sarcastic or not. I'll be assuming you aren't: I didn't check. I said what I said from what I remember seeing. $\endgroup$ – Git Gud Oct 13 '13 at 10:02
  • $\begingroup$ Well, it is trivial to check. data.stackexchange.com/mathematics/query/139389/top-answers $\endgroup$ – Mariano Suárez-Álvarez Oct 13 '13 at 10:02
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    $\begingroup$ In any case, drawing any conclusions about «interest in theoretical aspects of mathematics» rom MSE voting patterns is a hopeless task. The highest voted answer got its votes from being publicized in a very high profile site, and pretty close to 99% of the people that voted on it are irrelevant as far as «where interest in math is going». That case is particularly notorious, but the same applies to most other high voted answers. $\endgroup$ – Mariano Suárez-Álvarez Oct 13 '13 at 10:06
  • $\begingroup$ @MarianoSuárez-Alvarez : Its not about those highest voted extremes, but also from the moderate ones, the 8-20 ones. Ofcourse you are right in saying what you are saying. $\endgroup$ – Rajesh Dachiraju Oct 13 '13 at 10:10
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    $\begingroup$ I think what's happening is that the number of people with the time to read every question on m.se is going down, and as a result many questions and answers are just not seen by people who would likely vote them up if they saw them. $\endgroup$ – Gerry Myerson Oct 13 '13 at 12:27
  • $\begingroup$ The example you mentioned answering a query by @MichaelGreinecker is actually interesting: although the answers do not dwell on this (but the first comment refers to a WP page where this is mentioned), the question is very much concerned with (and in fact, originated a part of) differential Galois theory, a subject you would probably classify as theory. $\endgroup$ – Did Oct 13 '13 at 13:16
  • $\begingroup$ @Did : According to you, I think the users should use their intuition while they decide to upvote, which is a very good point. $\endgroup$ – Rajesh Dachiraju Oct 13 '13 at 13:55
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    $\begingroup$ I have no idea how your comment is related to mine--but this is no big deal at all. $\endgroup$ – Did Oct 13 '13 at 14:00
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    $\begingroup$ Towards the closers: this is meta. Opinion-based discussion is perfectly OK here. $\endgroup$ – Carl Mummert Oct 15 '13 at 11:26
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Is the % of population interested towards theoretical aspects of mathematics, diminishing in this community?

My guess is that by "theoretical aspects of mathematics" you meant more advanced levels of mathematics (relative to some baseline). In that case I agree: the number of lower level Q&A grows faster than the number of higher level Q&A. It could hardly be otherwise: the people studying any particular subject form a pyramid, with the majority working near the base and very few near the top. As the user base of Math.SE expands, the "advanced"/"basic" ratio approaches that in the "general population". (For some values of "advanced", "basic", and "general population".)

Can we create any special tags, badges and sections in this regard, to icrease interest towards theory?

Tagging by level has been proposed multiple times and usually rejected. There are some exceptions: vs and vs . It's possible that as the site grows, more such partitions will occur. For instance, from one could conceivably extract , dealing with existence/uniqueness/regularity/stability issues as opposed to solving some concrete boundary value problem by separating variables. (I am not actually proposing this to be done.)

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