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I do not understand why this question were reopened? Could anyone explain me it please. I voted to close it and it seems to me that it is "off-topic". If this is not so, then I don't see any point in asking people to add their work.

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    $\begingroup$ Post revision history. $\endgroup$ – user147263 Aug 18 '14 at 16:47
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    $\begingroup$ Obviously because not everyone agrees about what is "off-topic", e.g. generally I always vote to reopen valid mathematical questions whose answers may contribute helpful content to the site. $\endgroup$ – Bill Dubuque Aug 18 '14 at 17:12
  • $\begingroup$ possible duplicate of Why has this excellent question been put on hold? $\endgroup$ – Bill Dubuque Aug 18 '14 at 17:27
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    $\begingroup$ The main reason to ask people to show their work is stopping students from throwing their homework to us. This question is clear enough, doesn't look like a homework and most importantly, the question is interesting. $\endgroup$ – achille hui Aug 18 '14 at 17:28
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    $\begingroup$ So, "good" questions are not homework? I don't see any objective criterion in your argument. You just like the question and forget the FAQ. $\endgroup$ – Tomás Aug 18 '14 at 17:30
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    $\begingroup$ I voted to close but have no problem with others voting to reopen. If five 3K users find a question interesting enough, so be it. The time spent arguing over it is better spent closing and deleting other stuff, where less resistance is found. Choose your battles wisely... $\endgroup$ – user147263 Aug 18 '14 at 17:55
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    $\begingroup$ I voted to reopen because the question is obviously about mathematics; people voting to close as “off-topic” are abusing the “off-topic” designation to mean something else. $\endgroup$ – MJD Aug 18 '14 at 20:00
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    $\begingroup$ Who said that the question is not about mathematics @MJD? It is obviously about mathmatics and it is a good question (mathematically speaking). But that's not the problem here. Have your ever read this: (continue) $\endgroup$ – Tomás Aug 18 '14 at 20:06
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    $\begingroup$ "This question is missing context or other details: Please improve the question by providing additional context, which ideally includes your thoughts on the problem and any attempts you have made to solve it. This information helps others identify where you have difficulties and helps them write answers appropriate to your experience level." This is what appear when you close a question as off-topic. It is evidently that the question does not match these requirements. $\endgroup$ – Tomás Aug 18 '14 at 20:07
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    $\begingroup$ @Tomás Not everyone agrees that those are valid "requirements", e.g. see thread I linked above. $\endgroup$ – Bill Dubuque Aug 18 '14 at 20:08
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    $\begingroup$ @Tomás The title of this post is “Off-topic question that was reopened with no improvement”. $\endgroup$ – MJD Aug 18 '14 at 20:09
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    $\begingroup$ @MJD, if we are talking about different things, why do you come here to comment? Your comment just proves that we are talking about the same definition of "off topic" in this site, which I cited above. So, by considering this definition your vote to reopen is totally nonsense. $\endgroup$ – Tomás Aug 18 '14 at 20:20
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    $\begingroup$ Sorry, I thought you were asking for information; if I had realized you were looking for an argument I would not have participated. Please carry on without me. $\endgroup$ – MJD Aug 18 '14 at 20:25
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    $\begingroup$ @MJD "Not about mathematics" is one, but not the only one, reason listed in the off-topic group. Many questions about mathematics are closed via this group, as are many programming questions on Stack Overflow, and questions about English on English site, and questions about WordPress on Wordpress site, etc. $\endgroup$ – user147263 Aug 18 '14 at 20:25
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    $\begingroup$ @achille: Maybe not homework specifically, but it definitely looks like the poster is crowdsourcing his math work rather than, for example, seeking to understand mathematical concepts. $\endgroup$ – user14972 Aug 19 '14 at 4:47
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Would it kill the OP of that interesting question to even give the SLIGHTEST evidence of an attempt to solve the question? It's a pretty low bar to set. If they won't do that, then I see zero reason to keep the question open.

In contrast, I see plenty of reasons to keep the question closed, despite it being interesting from a purely mathematical perspective: closing the question sends a message that users should put in at least a minimal amount of effort when asking questions, so as to prevent this site from becoming a homework answering service. It also says that we don't discriminate: just because you personally find it interesting doesn't mean someone else does. If you encountered a question that was posed in such a manner that merely asked "prove the Pythagorean theorem," would you not close it for its lack of original effort? Triviality or non-triviality is subjective and as such should not be used as a basis for selecting one question to keep open and another to keep closed. However, asking the submitter to just show something that they tried honestly is NOT such an awful burden. Some of you are acting like we're asking them to solve the question themselves and publish it in a peer-reviewed journal before posting it to math.SE.

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    $\begingroup$ Note that the OP of the question, did not even bothered to answer @Stefan4024 comment. $\endgroup$ – Tomás Aug 19 '14 at 18:27
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    $\begingroup$ @Tomás Have you never been completely stuck on a problem, without any idea how to proceed? Surely everyone has been at that point, many times. $\endgroup$ – Bill Dubuque Aug 19 '14 at 19:15
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    $\begingroup$ @BillDubuque, even in this situation, I would reply Stefan4024 comment to say that I am completely stuck, however, that's not the case there, so the question is why? He just posted the question, without any further comment, nothing. He could just say what is his background, what he is studying now, etc... This is not the first time this happen. I saw plenty of guys, which just come here and ask something. If you ask some work to be show, they just do not answer, some of them just delete the account and come with another one to make the same question. $\endgroup$ – Tomás Aug 19 '14 at 19:48
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    $\begingroup$ @BillDubuque, I just think that some reciprocity is needed in this situation. If he don't know even where to start, what is the problem in writing this? Instead, he just posted the question, as if this site is like a machine: you enter with the question and as a return you gain an answer. $\endgroup$ – Tomás Aug 19 '14 at 19:53
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    $\begingroup$ @Tomás Considering that you have posted many questions of the same sort, I find your question and comments here to be highly hypocritical. For example your two most recent questions, question1, and question2 are both pure problem statements (PSQs), showing absolutely no work, no context, no knowledge-level, etc. Even more surprising, is that Mr. 900 situps (aka "much healthier") answered the first one, instead of rapidly closing and deleting it [...] $\endgroup$ – Bill Dubuque Aug 19 '14 at 21:17
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    $\begingroup$ @Tomás [...] How can either of you expect anyone to take what you write seriously when you do not apply the same "standards" to your own questions and answers? $\endgroup$ – Bill Dubuque Aug 19 '14 at 21:17
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    $\begingroup$ @BillDubuque, if my questions are worth to be closed, I have no problem with it, in fact, it must be closed, so at least I will learn how to do better questions in the future (if I am really interested in learn). If someone want me to improve it, I will be glad to try and do so, "however", as you can see, there is no comment ask such a thing, differently from the discussed question here. If the OP is advised to improve the question and he does not even attempt to do it, I don't see any reason to mantain it opened. $\endgroup$ – Tomás Aug 19 '14 at 21:47
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    $\begingroup$ @Tomás There are now requests to improve your questions - to meet the same standards that you impose on others. $\endgroup$ – Bill Dubuque Aug 19 '14 at 21:51
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    $\begingroup$ @BillDubuque As I already said, I do not expect anyone to be an impartial judge of the appropriateness of the content they are associated with. And I have no problem with the fact that those interested in the question under discussion voted to reopen it. You are free to VTC any question that you find lacking. $\endgroup$ – user147263 Aug 19 '14 at 21:54
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    $\begingroup$ @900 Still, I find it extremely puzzling how you can go to such great lengths as you did to massively close and delete PSQs, then answer them yourself when they occur in your own field. Nor did you post your usual comment about asking better questions. Why are questions in your field apparently exceptions to your general quality rules? $\endgroup$ – Bill Dubuque Aug 19 '14 at 22:06
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    $\begingroup$ Update: Tomás has now edited the first question to show some work. While this is very easy to do once one has seen a full answer (as there), it can be tremendously difficult if one has no idea at all how to start. Please try to keep that in mind when evaluating such questions. To properly estimate the difficulty of getting started may require specific knowledge of the subject (and also experience teaching it). $\endgroup$ – Bill Dubuque Aug 19 '14 at 22:44
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    $\begingroup$ @BillDubuque I'm afraid I'm going to leave you in this state of extreme puzzlement. Thanks for plugging the blog, though. $\endgroup$ – user147263 Aug 19 '14 at 22:53
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    $\begingroup$ I don't think you are right @BillDubuque. I have edited the question according with my experience when I have posted it. Only the remark can be thought as a "after answer". As you can see there, I was "stuck" when I posted the question and I can't see any problem in writing it, after your kindly comment. Could you explain what is so hard in doing this? $\endgroup$ – Tomás Aug 19 '14 at 22:53
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    $\begingroup$ @BillDubuque, here is an example of what I am talking about. I asked him what he have tried, and he just answered me, so it is safe to say that he is really interested in learn something, different from the OP of the question in discussion. $\endgroup$ – Tomás Aug 19 '14 at 23:09
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Bit long for a comment. A large segment of similar posts are contest questions rather than homework, maybe recent, maybe older. Sometimes these catch my eye owing to subject matter, but mostly not. More to the point, the same OP has often gone and posted three more while others look at the first. We have one guy with 434 (mostly) contest questions, another with 598 (but about 200 answers). I've just stopped opening these. I don't want to answer someone who is simply not paying attention, or maybe does not care about the material, just wants to post something. Meanwhile, as far as my asking about the work put in by the OP and the background/ motivation of the question (my usual concerns), there is not going to be anything satisfactory; the student has generally not been taking a class that discusses precisely related material.

It occurs to me that if I am not opening a question, I am also not voting to close it. Well, easier on my nerves this way.

Edit, Tuesday, August 19: it is a red flag with me if someone just dumps a question and does not respond to comments. I indicated this once on MO, one of the moderators suggested I was too quick to take offense, 24 hours seemed a more reasonable time window for responses by the OP. Well, 24 hours have passed for the question on Main under discussion.

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    $\begingroup$ It occurs to me that you voted 65 times in total, and never down. Never came across a post you didn't like? $\endgroup$ – user147263 Aug 18 '14 at 21:18
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    $\begingroup$ @900sit-upsaday, I did downvote about 3 times in the early days of MO, the first time made me feel ill. I prefer closing and deleting. I dislike the great majority of questions on MSE, less stressful to just pass them by. If I do open something and conclude that it's crap, I mostly vote to close then. $\endgroup$ – Will Jagy Aug 18 '14 at 22:48
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    $\begingroup$ Well, MO is another thing altogether. I think a part of MSE's problems stem from high-rep users carrying some habits from their gated community (MO) over to a rough neighborhood (MSE). Same approach just doesn't work. Adding a downvote to closevote would help the crap to get deleted sooner. Especially when applied to both Q and A parts. $\endgroup$ – user147263 Aug 18 '14 at 23:06
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    $\begingroup$ @900sit-upsaday I hope you realize how condescending it is for you, a relative newcomer, to come to this site with your own controversial agenda and then proceed to lecture established long term high-rep users about how their opinions are just "bad habits". $\endgroup$ – Nick Alger Aug 19 '14 at 6:18
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    $\begingroup$ @NickAlger Considering his/her posting history I'd bet a considerable amount of money that 900 sit-ups a day has more experience from math.SE and the other Stack Exchange sites than his current account's registration date suggests. $\endgroup$ – Daniel R Aug 19 '14 at 7:07
  • $\begingroup$ I dunno, everything about 900 is consistent with someone from a wikipedia editing background who came here recently and doesn't respect the difference in culture between the sites. $\endgroup$ – Nick Alger Aug 19 '14 at 7:28
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    $\begingroup$ @NickAlger 900 situps is one of the older users of the site. He was very sorely missed by many when he left his old account ~2.5 years ago. $\endgroup$ – Display Name Aug 19 '14 at 10:17
  • $\begingroup$ I would even call him Pavel, but I am not sure. It is just a conjecture. $\endgroup$ – Tomás Aug 19 '14 at 11:55
  • $\begingroup$ @900sit-upsaday This commment is addressed to you. $\endgroup$ – Bill Dubuque Aug 19 '14 at 21:19
  • $\begingroup$ @Tomás 900 sit-ups recently linked to his website calculus7.org in his MSE profile. It is easy to find there his full name Leonid... This is well-known to anyone following these events (and his many prior accounts). $\endgroup$ – Bill Dubuque Aug 19 '14 at 21:44

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