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I recall that there were some questions of this type asked on the main. Some of them were closed, some not.

I think it would be good to know what the MSE community thinks about this problem and, if there is a general agreement about this, it is better if it is stated somewhere explicitly.

If such questions are likely to be closed here and you are aware of other place where something like this would be on-topic, such information would be worth mentioning here, too.


I was prompted to ask this by this question, which is now deleted; hence it is visible only for some users. (But perhaps it is better to discuss this problem in general, rather than in a question mentioning specific book.)

There is an older questions, which is somewhat similar (but I would not say that it is a duplicate of my question): soft-question about textbooks, exercises, and solutions?

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    $\begingroup$ What if the answer to the question is "Yes, there is a solution manual. There is a single copy. It is in a dungeon guarded by a tiger." Usually, people are not just interested in the existence of a solution manual, they want to get their hands on it. And in many cases, these manuals are only intended for instructors. $\endgroup$ – Michael Greinecker Oct 17 '13 at 7:54
  • $\begingroup$ Well the first step to obtain a solution manual is to know whether the solution manual (or something akin to it) exists. But I agree that I could have formulate my question more clearly, mentioning both things (whether it exists and how to get it) would probably have been better. As the two questions are very close to each other, I take it that most user will understand my post in the way that I am asking about both questions. $\endgroup$ – Martin Sleziak Oct 17 '13 at 8:09
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I would prefer not to have such questions —this is a personal opinion, mostly, though.

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  • $\begingroup$ I don’t really care one way or the other, but (mirabile dictu! :-)) I have no objection to seeing them closed if that’s what most folks would prefer. $\endgroup$ – Brian M. Scott Oct 23 '13 at 0:59
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There are great resources available to help answer these questions, namely the publishers of the texts in question, and in some cases probably also online bookstores. In the case of old texts, inter-library loan catalogs would likely be the best resource. If someone is looking for unofficial solution guides, then DuckDuckGo, Google, etc. will likely give good answers quickly. Thus there should be no need to ask such questions here.

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    $\begingroup$ Well, for some books there might be no official solution manual (from the publisher), but there might be some solution sets made by people reading the book available online. (I have written down my solutions of some exercises from several books I was reading and I keep them online. I have seen than many other people do such things, too.) $\endgroup$ – Martin Sleziak Oct 17 '13 at 6:57
  • $\begingroup$ @MartinSleziak, are you suggesting that I add Google to my list of resources, and local librarians? $\endgroup$ – dfeuer Oct 17 '13 at 6:59
  • $\begingroup$ I am just pointing out that publisher and catalogs do not cover all possibilities. Of course, I have to admit, that Google search will very probably locate such source. $\endgroup$ – Martin Sleziak Oct 17 '13 at 7:00
  • $\begingroup$ @MartinSleziak - That's a good point. I have found a very nice unofficial solution Manuel to "A first course in probability" by Sheldon Ross $\endgroup$ – Belgi Oct 18 '13 at 6:58

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