151 votes

Why do *you* answer questions on math.stackexchange?

I am needy and insecure and derive validation from the gratitude of strangers.
user avatar
  • 13.6k
94 votes

Why do *you* answer questions on math.stackexchange?

Because solving mathematical problems is interesting, fun and it helps to keep mental acumen. I also find my teaching abilities, and perhaps writing abilities, to improve much faster because of this ...
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  • 370k
52 votes

Why do *you* answer questions on math.stackexchange?

I read a story about some guy who was deathly sick and to pass the time before he expired he began to read Euclid's Elements. Needless to say he made a miraculous recovery. I was also close to buying ...
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  • 2,486
37 votes

Why do *you* answer questions on math.stackexchange?

"Karma." Whenever I use a new program, get an error message or install a new hardware, I use google to find my problem on some forum where usually someone already answered it free of charge. This ...
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  • 20.4k
35 votes

Why do *you* answer questions on math.stackexchange?

There's something entertaining about answering questions that are hard enough to hold my interest but not so hard as to be a grueling experience. Also it's good to be helping students with math. I ...
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  • 42.4k
32 votes

Is CRUDE healthy?

CRUDE, as described in its description, is an incredibly helpful tool. There is nothing unhealthy about "feedback/discussion/requests of Close/Reopen/Undelete/Delete/Edit for questions and answers on ...
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  • 32.1k
27 votes

Does the reputation system encourage easy answers and low quality questions?

Mathematics, unlike most other branches of human knowledge and experience, is relatively universal in the sense that everyone has to take some mathematics classes in their academic career. This means ...
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26 votes

Why do *you* answer questions on math.stackexchange?

My answers on MathStackexchange are usually not too high level questions, simply because I'm not an expert in any math field. Now I notice that when I write an answer it is mostly when I see the ...
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  • 11.5k
25 votes

Why do *you* answer questions on math.stackexchange?

Here is my totally honest, non-high-flown answer: I'm just trying to become better at math. Learning from a book and by homework exercises is not that interesting to me, but I really do enjoy ...
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  • 17k
24 votes

Why do *you* answer questions on math.stackexchange?

In 2010 a psychology graduate student did one or two surveys on motivation for people using, and especially answering, on MO; see here. Tausczik eventually published her results in psychology journals....
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  • 130k
19 votes

Is CRUDE healthy?

Updated: put this suggestion at the top, since I felt it became important. Original answer follows below that. My challenge to anyone who "doesn't like CURED": Join the room and take actions at ...
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  • 141k
16 votes

Do we want community polls?

To me this is a rather light-hearted idea that might be useful in some ways and might be a distraction in other ways. I think we should just give this a try and see how it works out. If it becomes too ...
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  • 40.8k
16 votes

Does the reputation system encourage easy answers and low quality questions?

I'm going to invert this a bit. First, I'll answer your title question: Yes. ...but you probably don't have much of a reason to care, at least for the concerns you seem to be bringing up in the body ...
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15 votes

Why do *you* answer questions on math.stackexchange?

Well I hope this doesn't sound naive, but I just love teaching. At work I get paid for it, which of course is brilliant, getting paid for doing something you enjoy. But I'm still happy to do more, ...
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  • 77k
14 votes

Why do *you* answer questions on math.stackexchange?

My education does not feel for naught when I can answer a rare, specific question. This increases my satisfaction in learning. Every question is a challenge. Can I come up with the answer? If ...
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  • 14.2k
12 votes

Is CRUDE healthy?

Is CRUDE healthy? You mean right now!? I dunno. Heck, I don't even know when right now is! Perhaps the more important question is Can CRUDE be healthy? Certainly. Though it would probably be more ...
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11 votes

Why do *you* answer questions on math.stackexchange?

The best way to learn is to teach, and answering questions helps me learn. Sometimes I recover lost knowledge, sometimes in attempting to answer a question in a different way I learn something new. I ...
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  • 34.3k
11 votes

Why do *you* answer questions on math.stackexchange?

I think for three reasons. I am not now a mathematician or in a mathematical job, but I have enjoyed maths all my life (done pretty well too), and I want to keep myself sharp and learn what's going ...
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  • 96.4k
11 votes

Why do *you* answer questions on math.stackexchange?

I've been in love with Stack Exchange long before I finally decided to participate. My three main reasons for answering questions here are There is a constant stream of questions to keep me occupied ...
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11 votes

Is CRUDE healthy?

I was going to write just a comment, but there are several points to be made here so I decided to promote my 2 cents to an answer. My observations regarding CRUDE, the state of MSE, and this topic: ...
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  • 17.2k
10 votes

Why do *you* answer questions on math.stackexchange?

Self-esteem. Sometimes, when I read or hear things like Youtube comments, poorly spelled Facebook posts, oversimplified political rants on blogs, TV, bars, et cetera, I start feeling incredibly smart. ...
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  • 7,387
9 votes

Why do *you* answer questions on math.stackexchange?

This will probably be different than many people's answers, but aside from the basic "it feels good to help people", my primary motivators are probably: Figuring out what sort of explanations people ...
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  • 21.4k
9 votes

Why do *you* answer questions on math.stackexchange?

I have not been posting answers to SE for a very long time, I have been asking questions for a while though, and generally using the site(s) to find answers that elude me. The reasons I have for ...
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  • 1,715
9 votes

Is CRUDE healthy?

No, it's not. Cranks, nuts, newbies, PSQ-askers, PSQ-answerers, rep-farmers, donut-eaters, people making wrong assertions. How can we make them stop doing those things, or get them to leave? A self-...
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  • 17.2k
9 votes
Accepted

Who Created the Community User. There is a Saying on Their Account that “They are not Really a Person”, But Who Made Their About Page?

The Community user is mostly a token in a data base. The edits done by the community user are for the most part suggested edits that were proposed and approved by users. In rare cases SE starts some ...
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  • 40.8k
8 votes

Do we want community polls?

Personally, I'm not at all interested in having a Community Polls thread on our meta. I feel that any "results" taken from them are not really going to be representative of the site. I note that meta ...
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  • 49.9k

Only top scored, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible