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Why are classical mechanics questions moved to the physics exchange?

There is a tag here.

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migrated from math.stackexchange.com Feb 18 '15 at 22:40

This question came from our site for people studying math at any level and professionals in related fields.

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    $\begingroup$ My guess is because they are physics questions. $\endgroup$ – Matt Samuel Feb 18 '15 at 22:42
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    $\begingroup$ I would say that the expectation is that if a physics question is asked on math.SE, the crux of the problem is mathematical as opposed to physical. If that doesn't seem to be the case, it should be migrated. As to why even have the classical mechanics tag on math.SE, it's to let potential readers know that some knowledge of classical mechanics is probably necessary to solve the problem. $\endgroup$ – user137731 Feb 18 '15 at 22:50
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    $\begingroup$ Could you give some examples? $\endgroup$ – quid Feb 18 '15 at 22:56
  • $\begingroup$ @quid: Try asking a classical mechanics question on mathematics stack exchange and see what happens. $\endgroup$ – user217495 Feb 18 '15 at 22:59
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    $\begingroup$ I take this as a "no."// Looking a bit through the relevant tag it appears the majority of questions is in fact not migrated. The most recent one that was migrated really did not look like a math question. $\endgroup$ – quid Feb 18 '15 at 23:02
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    $\begingroup$ @quid did you downvote my question? $\endgroup$ – user217495 Feb 18 '15 at 23:08
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    $\begingroup$ Yes, as you are unable or unwilling to substantiate your claims. The question appears to be based on a false premise, and seems in any case more like a complaint about one recent migration. $\endgroup$ – quid Feb 18 '15 at 23:10
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    $\begingroup$ What's the problem with migration? I feel like its motivation is "We moved your question because we think it'll get a better answer there," which seems like a good motivation so long as its true (even if the question might get answered here) - and every case I've seen of this falls into that category. $\endgroup$ – Milo Brandt Feb 19 '15 at 4:20
  • $\begingroup$ I searched and found two recent mechanics questions which got migrated to Phys.SE, 1 and 2. Note that problem solving questions aren't allowed on Phys.SE, only conceptual questions are. So homwork questions migrated from MSE can be closed there. $\endgroup$ – user103816 Feb 19 '15 at 6:21
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    $\begingroup$ @user103816 These two aren't math questions at all... By the way, 10k users can check the list of recently migrated questions here. I count six questions migrated to Phys.SE in February. Only one of them had some amount of mathematical content, and in that case the OP requested themselves for the question to be migrated. $\endgroup$ – Najib Idrissi Feb 19 '15 at 8:35
  • $\begingroup$ @NajibIdrissi Both of them are classical mechanics questions. Classical Mechanics is a well known field of Mathematics. $\endgroup$ – user103816 Feb 19 '15 at 11:46
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    $\begingroup$ Classical Mechanics is not a field of Mathematics. $\endgroup$ – quid Feb 19 '15 at 13:39
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    $\begingroup$ "Classical Mechanics is a well known field of Mathematics." Do you even listen to yourself...? $\endgroup$ – Najib Idrissi Feb 19 '15 at 16:10
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    $\begingroup$ I, personally, find this question quite silly (although I want to use stronger terms there). One might as well ask "Why are we migrating programming questions to StackOverflow, or EE questions to Electronics.SE, or cooking questions to Cooking.SE?" It's simply a matter of the question being off-topic here and on-topic there. $\endgroup$ – apnorton Feb 19 '15 at 17:04
  • $\begingroup$ @quid: All you did was to dispute the "well-known" part, as noticed by Najib. It might be a part of mathematics which is not at all known to people. $\endgroup$ – Asaf Karagila Feb 19 '15 at 17:14
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I don't know much about mechanics, but we can generalize what Bye_World says in a comment above to all applied math questions: deciding where to ask is a matter of weight/balance of math vs. application context.

There are fairly simple mechanics problems (the forced pendulum comes to my mind; see [1] [2]), where the mathematical difficulty/issues far outweigh the fairly simple mechanics one needs to understand to state problem. Not surprisingly, most in-depth work on such problems was published by mathematicians. (To give you an example of [fairly hard] physics-related question that I think was correctly asked here see How to solve 29 coupled quadratic equations?)

On the other hand, if someone is asking a question where they are mostly confused about physical laws and how to apply them, migration is the best choice. There were actually some questions like that that I commented on here, but they appear to have been deleted, so (not having anywhere near enough rep) I can't find & link to them anymore. One [perhaps slighly below] borderline question is Applying linear algebra to solve a problem in mechanical equilibrium. Had it been asked on the physics site it might have received an answer by now.

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