Most of the questions I ask on Mathematics Stack Exchange are to help me understand the concept of how a mathematical function operates. Unfortunately I have received a lot of negativity on these questions, or else they almost immediately get put On Hold.

One example is my most recent post here where I am trying to identify what equation is behind the Cosine function, if any. I'm no mathematician and so some of (if not all) my questions may seem ignorant, which is true. That's why I'm here.

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    $\begingroup$ I sympathize because I think that question you linked is a natural one, but the best answer is "no", and it's not clear what kind of explanation beyond that would be helpful to you. The question is not well-researched either. Both of these factors probably contributed to the question being closed and your future questions would benefit from you thinking about these issues when you're formulating them. $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 10, 2017 at 13:14
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    $\begingroup$ The wording of the question you linked is unclear IMO. $\endgroup$
    – Qudit
    Commented Mar 10, 2017 at 19:14
  • $\begingroup$ Try a chat room. If you don't know which, you can try my chat room. These are better places for ill-formed questions. $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 16, 2017 at 20:00

1 Answer 1


I looked at the math.se questions you've asked. All but the one you link to above are reasonable and were answered. And you followed up by accepting an answer, which is the polite thing to do.

So just keep asking, and try not to be discouraged by some pushback on questions that some folks find unclear. Of course, try to be as clear as you can. Don't be too apologetic in advance, but hint that you know the question might be vague and that you welcome clarification. Sometimes I can guess what a "no mathematician" is trying to say.


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