Recently, I asked a question here about optimal stopping in a Markovian setting. To state my question properly and make it self-contained, I must of course add the background (related definitions and theorems,...).

Sometimes the background information is unfortunately long, making it less interesting to the readers.

Is there any efficient way to summarize technical details in our questions? Can my particular question be shortened?

  • 4
    $\begingroup$ I'd write the question normally and add all the details in the end, perhaps separated by a ---. This way, whoever needs to read it reads it and whoever already knows the subject skips it. $\endgroup$
    – Ivo Terek
    Apr 20, 2020 at 2:15
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Your Question is more about explication of a Remark in something you are reading, rather than about (say) finding expected (or "optimal") stopping times in a Markov process. When making use of an extensive quotation (image or textual) of a work, it is important to identify it as to author, title, etc. This will expedite Readers being able to help with picking out the background information that is really critical. I'd try to phrase the request for explanation in your own words, using the quoted material as context rather than as the "problem statement", thus framing what is not understood. $\endgroup$
    – hardmath
    Apr 20, 2020 at 5:20
  • $\begingroup$ I think the question is fine. It was easy to find your question, and easy to skip the parts I didn't want to read. You're sincerely struggling to understand a passage from a math book and you asked a question about it; that seems fine. I do agree that providing the title and author of the textbook would be helpful. $\endgroup$
    – littleO
    Apr 20, 2020 at 8:15
  • $\begingroup$ @littleO My lecture note is Optimal stopping and American options by Damien Lamberton. I find it hard to encompase my question as well as the author and the name of lecture note because of limitation 260 characters. Could you please an example of how you set the question title in this case? $\endgroup$
    – Akira
    Apr 20, 2020 at 8:25
  • $\begingroup$ Hi @hardmath, I don't get what you meant by "it is important to identify it as to author, title, etc". Could you please elaborate on this point? $\endgroup$
    – Akira
    Apr 20, 2020 at 8:26
  • $\begingroup$ I will add the name of lecture note as well as the author from now on. $\endgroup$
    – Akira
    Apr 20, 2020 at 8:27
  • $\begingroup$ I have made edits in your suggestions. Please have a check if it's fine now! $\endgroup$
    – Akira
    Apr 20, 2020 at 9:04
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Thanks, that is a nice improvement. The body of the Question allows you to give the context your request deserves, including the citation details. $\endgroup$
    – hardmath
    Apr 20, 2020 at 19:48


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