• 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
5,054 questions , 2,207 unanswered
5,347 answers , 22,726 comments
1,470 users with positive rep
818 active unimported users
More ...

  A tagging scheme for papers

+ 0 like - 5 dislike

Proposal: If someone wants to post a question while reading / studying a paper, the following tagging-scheme is proposed:

Format for title:

  • Title: [Paper] <Title of paper>

    Naming priority:

    1. inSPIRE-indexed title
    2. general formatting for papers
      e.g. "How far are we from the quantum theory of gravity?"
      not "How Far are We From the Quantum Theory of Gravity?"
  • In-title pseudo-tags

    • [Paper]
      default; must be included to differentiate from general posts
    • [Paper][Review]
      for review papers

    This system can be further expanded and/or modified as the site progresses.

Format for body:

  • Start with an unlinked url :

    1. inSPIRE
      first priority
    2. arXiv
      if applicable, and inSPIRE url is not applicable
    3. user url
      only when applicable

    use only text for urls: http://inspirebeta.net/record/615514

  • Body of the post — where the question is asked

Format for tags:

  • For inSPIRE-indexed papers
    use the most relevant inSPIRE keywords
    examples: , ,

  • For arXiv-archived papers
    limit to primary classification
    examples: , , , , , , ,

  • Both
    Include both tagging groups
    limit to four most relevant inSPIRE keywords + primary arXiv classification

  • Neither
    use appropriate tagging similar to above
    should be approved by moderator(s) first

  • Notes on tags:
    • they have a maximum length of 25 characters
    • they are all lower case
    • they cannot contain spaces
    • words are separated with dashes (hyphens) or periods
    • posts can contain a maximum of five tags

Example template:

Title: [Paper][Review (when applicable)] <Title of paper>

Unlinked url

Body of post


Example posts:

Title: [Paper][Review] How far are we from the quantum theory of gravity?

inSPIRE: http://inspirebeta.net/record/615514

Body of post


Title: [Paper] A model of leptons

inSPIRE: http://inspirebeta.net/record/51188

Body of post


: If a person has a specific question while reading a given paper, she can use the template to ask that question; if she has multiple questions on the same paper, each question will then require a separate post (with identical referencing info).

The scheme should - ideally - integrate with the entire tagging-system. --

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)
asked Sep 15, 2011 in SE.TP.discussion by UGPhysics (155 points) [ no revision ]
retagged Mar 7, 2014 by dimension10

1 Answer

+ 8 like - 0 dislike

I'm not entirely sold on this idea. I think it would be far better if the person reading the paper has a question, asks it in a way that a person who hasn't read it could still answer.

I have this feeling that your proposed scheme will introduce a flood of 1 line questions like: "How does the Author derive Line 16 from Line 15".

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)
answered Sep 15, 2011 by Michael Kissner (230 points) [ no revision ]
Fair point. I could see a couple of cases where your counter example would be valid on this site, but in general, they would not be.

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)
I'm just afraid that people will start linking papers and assume everyone has read it or will read it in order to answer the question

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)
I must admit, the thought occurred to me.

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)
Good point. Hadn't thought of it that way. ... Well, let's see what the rest of the community has to say. ...

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)
But, on the other hand, there will be posts on papers -- and -*should*- be. So, we should have a reasonable and manageable system to handle them.

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)
I think it should be more case by case. Some questions regarding papers can (and probably should) be asked in a way that doesn't require reading the paper. However, some questions are going to need a greater understanding of the paper. I like the idea of having a template for asking questions on papers, but maybe the body of the post should contain enough information if possible to answer the question without consulting the paper.

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)

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