# Trouble conveying question

In one of my recent questions, Embedding manifolds in a $3$-torus. Fact or fiction?, a commenter said that what I wrote "makes little sense."

I am having trouble putting myself in the commenter's shoes because I don't see what's wrong with the question. I spent hours trying to make it as clear and simple as possible but it still comes off as unclear to outsiders and very clear to me. I took multiple breaks between revisions as well. I've tried the constructive feedback chat but it's very inactive and only a few users visit it. I've read the page on how to ask a good question and I try to model my questions after it.

What am I doing wrong? How can I convey this question better?

• Is it worth linking to the constructive feedback chat you mention? You might attract some more users there if they only have to click. – postmortes Dec 2 '19 at 15:53
• I note that OP has deleted the question. – Gerry Myerson Dec 2 '19 at 21:19

Disclaimer: my grasp of differential/Riemannian geometry is not quite strong enough to answer your underlying question, but I think I understand all the various pieces enough to answer this question on meta.

First off: What is "Fact or Fiction?" doing in the question title? It comes across as click-baity and adds nothing to the actual question, which appears to be "Can this geodesic-closure construction be embedded in the three-torus?" I am awaiting the day when someone posts "Ten integrals maths teachers don't want you to be able to solve! (You won't believe the $$\tan^{-1}$$ in number $$3$$)." but so far it hasn't happened.

Next: this question is probably too short. While keeping things concise is a good idea in general, an old writing rule that applies in maths too is "Say everything you need to say in only the words needed to say it." I think your question would benefit from describing the geodesic closure construction that you're talking about, and exactly (mathematically) how you're putting these things into the cube (is that in $${\mathbb R}^3$$ by the way?) since any answer will need to consider exactly that. When I read your question I had to go the linked paper to check the geodesic closure (section 2.3) and I still wasn't very sure how you're putting them in the cube or connecting the points at infinity to the corners of the cube.

Rather than remove what you already have though, I'd keep it as an executive summary of the question, so that potential answerers can assess how difficult your question is.

Next: you may be asking on the wrong site. This might just be better asked on mathoverflow.com.

Finally: you're lacking context and motivation. Even if this is just because it's of intrinsic interest to you, it would be better to state that, but asking if it can be embedded in the three-torus suggests that you have a specific application in mind: so tell us :)

And so that you're not the only one I'm criticising here, the commentor, who appears to be a high-rep-worth individual with plenty of answers in the relevant tag, could certainly have taken one more sentence to explain why they think what you've written isn't good. If they understand the area well enough to know what the problems are, then they understand it well enough to point them out. Maybe they were busy and will provide an update later, but as it stands their comment is unhelpful, and might be taken by some to be rude.

• Please don't encourage this user to ask on MathOverflow. Their questions are not too specialized or advanced; the issue is just that they don't actually understand anything about the topics they're asking about and so their questions are nonsensical. – Eric Wofsey Dec 3 '19 at 3:16