A few days ago a new tag called was created. The same user also created the tag-excerpt: "For translating between natural language expressions and logic expressions."

Then the tag started growing very fast (18 questions 2 days later, 58 questions 3 days later, it is now at 89 questions less than a week after it was created).

Probably it would be wise to discuss whether the tag is useful before continuing with large retagging effort. In fact, many users here are of the opinion that new tags should be discussed on meta before creation.1

The main objection I have to this tag is that it seems to be a bit too specific. After all we already have the tags, (and ), , - some of those will be probably a good fit for most question tagged . With only 5 spots for tags available, we might quite easily run out of space.

On the other hand, I understand that the tag encompasses a class of problems which often appears as exercise in various introductory mathematical courses - and thus it might help with searching for examples of such problems.

I would certainly be glad to hear the opinion from other users on this new tag - especially from those who are active in question related to logic, since they are probably in the best position to judge whether this tag might be useful or not.

1See also the older discussion: Should every new tag be discussed on meta before creation? Or a recent comment by Jyrki Lahtonen: "IMHO ideally all new tags at Math.SE should be cleared in meta."

  • $\begingroup$ I have also pinged the tag creator to let them know about this post on meta. $\endgroup$ Commented Apr 3, 2018 at 6:57
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I know what you meant, but "great speed" make this all sound like a good thing... $\endgroup$
    – Asaf Karagila Mod
    Commented Apr 3, 2018 at 8:01

2 Answers 2


I was the tag-creator and so let me first apologize for the problems I apparently caused!

Sorry, I really didn't know the protocol here. I did do some searching for creating tags, but I never saw anything about having to propose the tag on Meta. Going by the comments, I clearly did not search deeply enough though, so I am sorry for that!

I did read that creating new tags should be done very in a very conservative way, but I felt that logic translations forms a pretty well-defined and self-contained class of problems, instances of which are posted fairly frequently. Here, for example, were three posts in rapid succession yesterday that would fall in this category:

Translate the following sentence into a predicate formule

Symbolize the following sentences with the given symbolization key

Use predicate logic to express the statement "No one has more than three cousins"

And yes, I thought that with a tag the searching for these kinds of problems would be greatly helped, and so I enthusiastically started tagging lots of posts, hoping that this would create a useful 'library' for users, not realizing that this would create a lot of work and frustration. Again, please accept my apologies for my ignorance!

As far as going forward: not knowing the ins and outs of all the consequences of tagging efforts, and also not having the experience as to what would make a tag useful or worth it, I'll accept any decision that those more in the know will make about this.

But may I suggest to have a little more about Tags in the Help Center? I went here, and didn't see anything about all the problems tagging might cause :(

  • $\begingroup$ Hi Bram28, sorry for the delayed response. I would suggest to wait at least a few days to see whether somebody else objects to the new tag, but so far the voting seems to be in favor of the tag you created. (Your post is currently at +3.) Or, if you do not want to wait too long, I would at least suggest during the next week only retag new posts and after that, if there are still no objections, continue with retagging old questions. $\endgroup$ Commented Apr 7, 2018 at 11:31
  • $\begingroup$ You have also mentioned in your post that there should be a bit more in the help center/FAQ. I have posted a separate question where this could be discussed: FAQ for tag creation? (After all, this is related to tag creation in general, not only to this specific case.) $\endgroup$ Commented Apr 7, 2018 at 11:33
  • $\begingroup$ @MartinSleziak Thank you for your feedback and for posting that separate Meta question. I think I'll indeed start tagging the new questions that come in and if in a week or so the feedback is still positive, go back to older questions. I did read somewhere that I should not do too many at once though ... is it because they end up in some kind of queue that other people need to work through? $\endgroup$
    – Bram28
    Commented Apr 7, 2018 at 16:13
  • $\begingroup$ In general, there is a reason not to do many edits in short time. Edited questions are bumped and people who view the questions sorted by activity see them on the frontpage. Additional reason for new tags is that if there is a consensus that a new tag should be removed, then also those questions have to be edited again. (The other possibility is that the tag is burninated, which means removal of all occurrences - but this need to be done by SE staff, local mods cannot do this.) $\endgroup$ Commented Apr 7, 2018 at 16:27
  • $\begingroup$ @MartinSleziak Ah, ok, thanks for explaining this, I appreciate it! $\endgroup$
    – Bram28
    Commented Apr 7, 2018 at 16:52
  • $\begingroup$ @Bram28: Please see my suggested broader tag, which should include all the stuff you are interested in catching. =) $\endgroup$
    – user21820
    Commented Apr 14, 2018 at 2:57

I am not in favour of the new tag because it is (as Martin said) too specific. It should be renamed to something like (see here), and include (in its description) not only logic-translation (whether to express English or mathematical statements) but also other basic stuff like proofs over propositional logic. Basically, all elementary questions that do not involve meta-logical reasoning can be included under this tag. I think this may be conservative enough and yet serve the purpose that Bram28 meant for the logic-translation tag to serve.

This would mirror how the is meant to catch all the elementary set theory questions that should not be tagged .

  • $\begingroup$ Introducing (elementary-logic) tag (or any other similar elementary tag) is quite a big change - something like this is not going to be easy to maintain. (Not to mention retagging the existing questions.) I left a few comments on elementary-* tag in Tagging chat room. In any case, let's see how the users vote on this proposal and if there is some support for it, we can discuss further what would be the best way to go further. $\endgroup$ Commented Apr 14, 2018 at 5:00
  • $\begingroup$ @MartinSleziak: The retagging issue is the same with any new tag with a large number of matching posts; "logic-translation" too is a significant fraction of elementary-logic. I think it can help new users who bother to read the tag description, if elementary-logic has specific mention of "logic-translation" (maybe copying what Bram28 already wrote for description). Thanks for mentioning this thread in the Tagging room! $\endgroup$
    – user21820
    Commented Apr 14, 2018 at 5:04
  • $\begingroup$ @user21820 Interesting proposal! Yes, I like how it mirrors elementary-set-theory. But such a tag would also cover quite a lot more than just translations: there are also truth-tables (just the truth-table for the conditional alone probably generates a few dozen questions a year :) , boolean algebra manipulations, and formal proofs. The last two have their own tags. My very rough guess is that there are about 1000-1500 questions specifically on logic translations on the site. But again, I don't know the ins and outs, and the costs and benefits of tagging efforts. $\endgroup$
    – Bram28
    Commented Apr 14, 2018 at 12:28
  • $\begingroup$ @Bram28: Yep I'd consider elementary-logic to include truth-tables and basic boolean algebra and basic proofs say in Fitch-style or Hilbert-style. Since tags are not meant to be mutually exclusive, it is perfectly fine for it to overlap with the existing boolean-algebra and formal-proofs tags. Note that some advanced questions may use either or both of these two topic tags, and not the elementary-logic tag, which is more like a level tag. $\endgroup$
    – user21820
    Commented Apr 14, 2018 at 12:33
  • $\begingroup$ @user21820 OK, well, I'm all for an elementary-logic tag ... from my (admittedly very naive!) point of view, the more tags the better .. well, within reason of course. And if we do have boolean-algebra, and we do have formal-proofs, then why not logic-translation? We do seem to be getting a fair amount of questions in that area. If I just search for 'logic translation' I get 960 results; that's a significant number I think. For comparison: 'boolean algebra' gets 1966 results, 'formal logic' 2209; natural deduction' 1125; ... and 'sudoku' 268, and 'gauge integral' 83 $\endgroup$
    – Bram28
    Commented Apr 14, 2018 at 13:18
  • $\begingroup$ @Bram28: After thinking a bit more, perhaps having logic-translation as a tag may not be a problem after all. The problem Martin raised was that a post can have only at most 5 tags, so if we have too many overlapping tags we may end up with a post that fits more than 5 tags. But as far as I can tell, every 'logic-translation' question primarily fits (propositional-logic or predicate-logic or first-order-logic or second-order-logic) and perhaps also quantifiers. If we add your proposed tag, it still leaves 2 more tags for topics the post may be related to. $\endgroup$
    – user21820
    Commented Apr 14, 2018 at 13:47
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    $\begingroup$ @Bram28: But there is still a difference between your proposed tag and the other existing tags. Yours is a kind-of-question tag, while the existing ones are nearly all topic tags. So I don't really know whether people want such kind of tags; it might lead to an endless proliferation of tags. $\endgroup$
    – user21820
    Commented Apr 14, 2018 at 14:11
  • $\begingroup$ @user21820 I think that introducing (elementary-logic) tag is probably sufficiently big change to be discussed in a separate thread. (Moreover, if you post a separate question about this, it is more likely to get noticed than if mentioned only in an answer to a discussion about another tag. (Moreover, since this question is now quite old, it is less likely that it gets too much additional feedback.) $\endgroup$ Commented Apr 29, 2018 at 7:18
  • $\begingroup$ @MartinSleziak: Sorry too busy recently to do much on SE. Thanks for your comment though! $\endgroup$
    – user21820
    Commented Apr 29, 2018 at 14:32
  • $\begingroup$ A recent question which is (to some extent) related: Which tag should be used for (elementary-logic)? $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 20, 2018 at 5:17

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