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2:59 AM
@orthocresol ...indeed. I agree with almost all that you've said.
I also agree that Canonicals won't bring the advanced org-chem users to the site because they are about only elementary chemistry
the only problem here - it seems - is that our site doesn't have many sufficiently advanced organic chemistry people posting advanced organic chemistry content. The same, I believe, can also be said about several other branches of chemistry, and not just org-chem. The only way this field can be promoted is by asking and answering more such questions.
Obviously, this feels more like a chicken-and-egg-problem: expert users are less interested into the site because expert content is rare, but only expert users can post such expert content.
 
3:41 AM
@hBy2Py in such cases, I'll rather post the question in here and get it mod-deleted, rather than involve five CVers in close voting it. even after close voting it's going to stick around on our site, and the OP is probably never going to come back to add clarification, so... Thoughts?
 
 
9 hours later…
12:58 PM
You can go hide there :P
 
1:35 PM
@GaurangTandon Another difficulty is that the window of expertise is fairly narrow, for someone to know little enough about an expert question to need/want to ask it here, instead of already knowing the answer or knowing what conventional reference sources to look at to find the answer.
 
2:07 PM
@hBy2Py that's true, and that is another reason why beginner+medium level questions will always be heavily dominant on an SE site about entire Chemistry.
 
Can we allow all conceptual questions
Introduce a lack of research policy to stop questions like boiling point of water
And use the homework policy to only shut down questions like 1-2= ? Haalllpppppp
Conceptual questions not answered elsewhere on the internet are certainly worth answering here
For the lack of research bit we could have the first closevoter submit a link in the comments and other closevoters can use that to closevote
This way good questions can definitely be sifted from the heap of homework questions
 
@AvnishKabaj the dividing line between conceptual and non-conceptual is blurry, just as it is with low-effort and more-effort :(
 
@GaurangTandon I don't think so
Can you give an example
 
@AvnishKabaj that is a separate issue, I covered it here
 
2:22 PM
@GaurangTandon it doesn't have an example
Just make one up
Oh wait it does
 
@AvnishKabaj you're the one proposing a closure mechanism that requires CVers to be able to objectively distinguish conceptual questions from non-conceptual ones. The word conceptual means "relating to or based on mental concepts." which is a rather subjective category. So, I think you're the one who needs to state some example questions and describe how to objectively determine if they are conceptual or not.
 
The way I see it
Effort and a question being conceptual are not related at all
 
...so?
 
So you're saying that they are
 
no, I'm asking you to help me understand how to objectively distinguish conceptual questions from non-conceptual ones.
 
2:33 PM
Why do epoxides folo snone in H+ condishon and twp in oh- thanku for help
That's low quality conceptual question
I may be wrong by saying that those two are miles apart
All I need is one negative
Gaurang
That's why I asked for an example
 
@AvnishKabaj that I agree with, but it's just one example. my point was that something may be conceptual for you but may not be for me. hence, the closure will always be inconsistent. In fact, atm, all this policy seems to do is close down on "repetitive, short-sighted" questions ("calculate pH 2M HCl in buffer...", "balance yet another redox reaction") which we can easily and more accurately close via canonical dupe closures
 
The point is to have good questions, no?
Doing this will remove sure shot bad questions.
 
Have an example: Balancing a redox reaction is conceptual. But, if you get slightly changed redox reactions seven times a week, how would that have any long term value? there's infinite reactions in the chemi-verse, and balancing each one of them invokes our fundamental concepts of oxidation number/etc., does that mean that our site should entertain all of them?
?
 
2:54 PM
@GaurangTandon the concept behind balancing any redox reaction is the same after that it's just applying it to a lot of questions
Like you reach someone to 1+3
Add
That's the concept
After that it's application
1+2
578659+8866677888
 
@AvnishKabaj ...and that's where the canonical posts come in. I get it that you and I are trying to head in the same direction. But a closure based on whether a question is conceptual or not is subjectively decided, whereas canonical posts dupe closure is objective. Thus a better alternative exists to achieve what you're trying to do :)
(and if you've an even better idea than canonicals, feel free to explain)
 
Well as I see it is that we are trying to different things
But both of them are good
:P
 
@AvnishKabaj if I close "1+2" and "578659+8866677888" as a dupe of a canonical post about "a+b", how does that not achieve what you want to?
 
@GaurangTandon I'm changing the closevote mechanics
What you're trying to do is already having that question at the site
Your thing imho is not sustainable in the long run
Nobody stays that motivated always
 
3:12 PM
@GaurangTandon "What is the pH of a acetic acid solution with a concentration of 0.5 mol/L?" versus "How do I calculate the pH of a weak acid or base?" Even though there is some bias to determine whether a question is conceptual or not, the overall determination is pretty straight forward, and should only be little influenced by opinion.
@GaurangTandon Balancing a specific reaction equation is not a conceptual question; balancing reaction equations, on the other hand, is a conceptual question. If you disallow the prior, but allow the latter, a question about balancing reaction equations will fit in one of three categories: (1) it is not conceptual, (2) it is conceptual, but it falls within range of another question with the same concept, i.e. duplicate (3) it is conceptual, but it goes further than a previous question, let open
@GaurangTandon I disagree. A conceptual question is by merit of it self a question about a concept, therefore applies to all questions regarding the same concept. A canonical question must be a conceptual question. The division into conceptual and non-conceptual questions is not nearly as subjective as you make it out to be.
I also disagree that canonical posts are the best way to do things. I believe they require too much maintenance to be working effectively, while a well-asked conceptual question with its answers is always helpful. I also do not think that duplicate closure is the best way to deal with basic chemistry (and homework) questions
@AvnishKabaj I absolutely agree with this statement.
 
3:35 PM
hmm...okay, that's quite a lot of thought...okay, let me understand: if I rewrite the word "conceptual" as "repetitive, short-sighted" (repetitive => multiple similar variations, "short-sighted" => little long term value), would it accurately describe those questions you're calling "conceptual"? @Martin-マーチン @AvnishKabaj
 
@GaurangTandon No. A conceptual question can neither be repetitive, nor short sighted
 
@Martin-マーチン sorry, a typo! i was actually trying to say "non-conceptual" as "repetitive, short-sighted"
 
well, not every non-conceptual question is always repetitive or short sighted. It does, however, always focus on a very specific problem. (Which might still be an okay fit for our site.)
 
@Martin-マーチン ...can you give an example so I understand you better?
 
Pick any question about a reaction mechanism. While you could certainly link some question to a similar mechanism, but some substrates may have some specific things that need to be addressed separately
Ideally such questions would be linked sooner or later and build up a network of questions belonging to a common topic...
 
3:46 PM
@Martin-マーチン I get it that publishing a canonical post takes a lot of effort (it took me two days to finalize the newest one :O), but I don't completely agree with the "too much maintenance" part. The elementary concepts in Chemistry aren't going to change in the future, so what is once stated is going to remain correct forever. There may be slight small additions, but definitely not "too much maintenance". And canonicals are by definition well-asked questions, with properly scoped answers.
I don't see, for example, why I am going to need to make more than even three revisions in an year on an average to the newest canonical. The same can be said about any elementary canonical post.
@Martin-マーチン hmm sounds reasonable...
 
@Martin-マーチン Is the revised hw policy + lack of research feasible?
 
@GaurangTandon I'm not disagreeing with you. Once you have the main part set up, then that won't change much. But that is true for most conceptual question, albeit with a more narrow scope. I'm certainly not in the way of that project; I just think that it is not as urgently necessary to reform our closing policy. It would be a more helpful way out, but terrible duplicate questions would still need to be weeded out. That's what I meant with maintenance.
(But that would essentially apply to closures to other conceptual questions, too.)
 
@Martin-マーチン hmm, alright, sounds good.
 
@AvnishKabaj I don't know if lack of research is actually a better identifier than effort. In any case, if we wanted to move away from the effort argument, we would need to scrub the hw policy in it's current form. And since one of the essential problems associated with it is its name, we can just build something new from scratch and get rid of the old one.
 
@Martin-マーチン "The division into conceptual and non-conceptual questions is not nearly as subjective as you make it out to be." Okay, fine, I get it that the distinction between may not be as blurry as I think it is. Then how about we run a month (fortnight?) long experiment: 1. replace the current hw policy with a one based on requiring conceptual queries (only for undergraduate level topics), 2. make a short list of undergraduate level topics, ....
3. setup a separate chat room to discuss specific questions, and 4. at the month end see some stats
How about that?
that experiment will help us concretely gauge if the community is accurately able to identify conceptual questions from non-conceptual ones; if the amount of quarrels due to disagreement over conceptual closures is almost negligible as compared to the total number of the questions, we can consider the case to be won
 
4:12 PM
?
 
That experiment would only work, if you have a real policy already written up. In theory, every question should be conceptual by nature of the site, it should be applicable to as many people as possible. And if we were to run that experiment, we would need the community to agree on that first. I am certainly not going to impose something like that. If I were dictating those terms, the hw policy would have been long gone.
@Martin-マーチン also that policy should have been agreed upon by the community
The worst part of the the current policy is, that the original reason why to close those questions is still in there, but most close-voters entirely focus on whether the OP was lazy or not, and don't focus by any notable degree on whether it would be (conceived as) helpful in the long run.
anyhow... g2g... see y'all laters
 
@Martin-マーチン whoa. what do we infer from that? That we've had a number of very specific conceptual queries over the years, but we've been closing them all. I have changed my mind over the past month - when my eyes opened as I read our tour page - our aim should be to be a detailed library of every question about Chemistry, and that each question should have some long-term value. So i'm all in for such a transition from the current policy to a conceptual one, at least even as a part of an experiment
so, from what I can conceive, we're okay with low-effort queries, as long as they are conceptual and can be valuable in the long run. (low effort does not imply 90deg rotated picture of a question and "SOLVE IT FOR ME PLZZ", low-effort implies something like this question by Marko) agreed?
 
 
6 hours later…
10:27 PM
@GaurangTandon Well, both are objectively low-effort. If you want to distinguish between the two, you need a criterion that is not called "effort".
Propose deletion:
 

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