I had a recent question closed (link below) and the reason given was that it lacked detail...

Not exactly sure how anyone can read this as lacking detail?

Applications of Vector Spaces that are not defined over $\mathbb{R}$?

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Questions on this site can be closed because they are too broad. This may have been on users minds when they submitted close votes. That said I disagree with the closure, because someone else is bound to have the same question and the answer should be on stack exchange. $\endgroup$
    – user400188
    Sep 24, 2020 at 6:57
  • $\begingroup$ @user400188 - Appreciate the mindset re broad, but how exactly should this question be repositioned to meet the community standards? The question is broad because it is a broad question. Until I made the post I hadn't ever heard of any applications of Vector Spaces that wasn't defined over the Field of Real Numbers. Google wasn't providing anything so I came here... $\endgroup$ Sep 24, 2020 at 7:58
  • $\begingroup$ The question also overlaps with this older one? Don't know if it would be fair to call it a duplicate though. $\endgroup$ Sep 24, 2020 at 19:00

1 Answer 1


Your question was a broad one, and would have had multiple valid answers with no way of determining which one was the best one to accept.

However, other questions have been asked which are just as broad or broader (see Real life applications of general vector spaces). If it was on peoples minds it would have just been a contributing factor rather than the main reason.

The question may have remained open if you had included a level of study and background. The linked question for instance is clearly aimed at undergraduates receiving their first introduction to generalised vector spaces, and its answers reflect this. On the other hand, if the question was aimed at researchers trying to list an application of their work, the accepted answer would read like an elevator pitch.

With the added context, users will know which approach is appropriate for the question.

  • $\begingroup$ Appreciate the detail in your response. Is there any other Maths communities on StackExchange that allow for questions that have multiple correct answers? (This would allow for research based questions). I still find it odd that the community is built so that guesswork must be employed in addressing critique. $\endgroup$ Sep 24, 2020 at 9:31
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    $\begingroup$ @DavidGalea I'm not aware of any on the stack exchange network, sorry. $\endgroup$
    – user400188
    Sep 24, 2020 at 10:08
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    $\begingroup$ @DavidGalea This answer is not saying "ask you question elsewhere", but rather "improve your questions". Tell us why you were wondering this (did you hear of some application in your first year uni lecture (week 1!), or were you reading a yellow Springer Graduate Text at the time, and was there something specific what made you wonder this?), and also tell us what you mean by "practical application" (do you mean "non-maths"?). $\endgroup$
    – user1729
    Sep 24, 2020 at 10:14
  • $\begingroup$ @user1729 - Thanks for the detail in your comment. I will edit accordingly. $\endgroup$ Sep 24, 2020 at 23:43

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