• Register
PhysicsOverflow is a next-generation academic platform for physicists and astronomers, including a community peer review system and a postgraduate-level discussion forum analogous to MathOverflow.

Welcome to PhysicsOverflow! PhysicsOverflow is an open platform for community peer review and graduate-level Physics discussion.

Please help promote PhysicsOverflow ads elsewhere if you like it.


PO is now at the Physics Department of Bielefeld University!

New printer friendly PO pages!

Migration to Bielefeld University was successful!

Please vote for this year's PhysicsOverflow ads!

Please do help out in categorising submissions. Submit a paper to PhysicsOverflow!

... see more

Tools for paper authors

Submit paper
Claim Paper Authorship

Tools for SE users

Search User
Reclaim SE Account
Request Account Merger
Nativise imported posts
Claim post (deleted users)
Import SE post

Users whose questions have been imported from Physics Stack Exchange, Theoretical Physics Stack Exchange, or any other Stack Exchange site are kindly requested to reclaim their account and not to register as a new user.

Public \(\beta\) tools

Report a bug with a feature
Request a new functionality
404 page design
Send feedback


(propose a free ad)

Site Statistics

205 submissions , 163 unreviewed
5,064 questions , 2,215 unanswered
5,347 answers , 22,734 comments
1,470 users with positive rep
818 active unimported users
More ...

  Rename ''Question'' to "Query"

+ 1 like - 1 dislike

In the context of the two recent discussion items http://www.physicsoverflow.org/17874/how-much-discussion-is-appreciated-on-physicsoverflow and http://www.physicsoverflow.org/17873/is-self-answering-questions-welcome-on-physicsoverflow I propose to rename (on buttons, in the FAQ, etc.) the term ''Question'' to "Query". This would make it clear that the format desired here is not a strict question answer format, and makes it more natural (at least for me) to place material for discussion on PO that is not a question in a strict sense.

asked May 25, 2014 in Feature Request by Arnold Neumaier (15,787 points) [ no revision ]
retagged May 26, 2014 by dimension10

Hi Arnold, even though the change of the name of the button seems to be slightly controversial, the intention behind it is clearly not.

So I think you could savely go forward and post it if you have something related to your research to ask already. Maybe others will then follow, such that a culture of "softening" the Q&A format to better allow for research-level discussions can be established even without formaly changing the name of the button ...

It really doesn't matter what it's called--- any on topic question is welcome, especially research level, even if it is a call for comments.

2 Answers

+ 0 like - 0 dislike

I don't agree with this because it encourages questions which aren't thought of well, especially from laymen acting like they understand anything of Physics, like Just checking; String theory and Loop Quantum gravity are different right? or similar unwanted trash. 

answered May 26, 2014 by dimension10 (1,985 points) [ no revision ]

As said in another thread, renaming the button would be meant to help professional physicists by allowing them to just place for example  some content related to their research into the question, and ask others about their comments and possible contributions or solutions.

@Dilaton I know and am not questioning the intentions behind the change! But it won't work. It does not invite discussion (in which case I would support it), on the other hand, it invites questions which aren't well thought of.

+ 1 like - 1 dislike

If the button is called "query" instead of "question", this would look a bit unuasal to me first. But if it really helps researchers feeling encouraged to discuss about their work on PhysicsOverflow, I would not mind it. In fact, I do not feel strongly about it.

answered May 26, 2014 by Dilaton (6,240 points) [ no revision ]

Your answer

Please use answers only to (at least partly) answer questions. To comment, discuss, or ask for clarification, leave a comment instead.
To mask links under text, please type your text, highlight it, and click the "link" button. You can then enter your link URL.
Please consult the FAQ for as to how to format your post.
This is the answer box; if you want to write a comment instead, please use the 'add comment' button.
Live preview (may slow down editor)   Preview
Your name to display (optional):
Privacy: Your email address will only be used for sending these notifications.
Anti-spam verification:
If you are a human please identify the position of the character covered by the symbol $\varnothing$ in the following word:
Then drag the red bullet below over the corresponding character of our banner. When you drop it there, the bullet changes to green (on slow internet connections after a few seconds).
Please complete the anti-spam verification

user contributions licensed under cc by-sa 3.0 with attribution required

Your rights