Currently I'm reading some few papers, sometimes I think something is wrong or I can't understand it, So I'll ask it in CSTheory, but simple comment helps me to find out my problem, after that I'll remove my question (and upvote commenter in another answer).

Currently I think I'm like spam generator, but really I can't ask this question in another sites (like math,stackoverflow,...) because they need good knowledge in field (they are easy to answer with this knowledge but without this knowledge they aren't readable).

I don't know is there any other option (like chat, but all user can see it)? Or I shouldn't do so?

  • $\begingroup$ Depending on area and level, either cstheory.SE or math.SE should be fine. Or, you know, you could support the Computer Science proposal on area51. ;) $\endgroup$ – Raphael Jan 15 '12 at 21:47

I agree with Artem. I don't think it is a good way of using the site. cstheory is a Q&A site with a specific scope. If you have a question which can be answered by (say) a good typical undergraduate student then it is probably out-of-scope here. Think of asking questions on cstheory as asking questions from other grad students/colleagues/your advisor. If you don't feel good about asking a question from them off-line then with good probability it is not a suitable question for cstheory.

If you have trouble in reading/writing English, then you should work on improving them. There are SE sites related to English and you can try getting help there.

On the other hand, if while reading a paper you face a question and after spending a reasonable time still can't understand it then I think that can be turned into a reasonable cstheory question. And so far your questions seem to have been reasonable.

ps: generally, the fact that one doesn't find another place to post/get help about something is not a reason to psot it on cstheory.

  • $\begingroup$ They aren't really simple question, and sure undergraduate student can't answer it, Also too many Profs, they are around specific fields (e.g currently tree decomposition) and need deep knowledge in these fields, They are simple if you have deep knowledge on them, I removed them, but if you want I'll repost them to see it. but thanks for English sites. Also may be sometimes I have problem for understanding something and this needs big picture, But In fact as I wrote currently I'm alone, and work is little harder than normal situation. (this is at most for 2 month) $\endgroup$ – Saeed Jan 10 '12 at 10:19
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    $\begingroup$ @Saeed, I think it is completely fine to post questions if they are about TCS papers and they are of the research-level. It is normal to ask questions which might be easy for experts in that area but are difficult for researchers in other areas. ps: please write in English so other can also understand the discussion. Thanks. $\endgroup$ – Kaveh Jan 11 '12 at 1:27
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    $\begingroup$ I agree. If anything, cstheory.SE should by definition be the place for questions about research papers. You can't very well know how hard the answer is before you got the answer, don't you? $\endgroup$ – Raphael Jan 15 '12 at 21:48

I think making questions and then removing them right away is not standard practice and probably frowned down upon. There is a general chat feature available that everyone can see/use. However, our chat does not have very fast turn-around, since few people check it. Maybe if you start using it, others will follow your lead.

On the larger question at hand. Getting instant help when reading a paper isn't always beneficial. Sometimes spending the 30 minutes to understand it yourself will give you a much deeper understanding than asking right away. By not taking the time to figure out the details yourself, you run the risk of thinking you understood the paper from other's comments without having actually gone through the obvious pitfalls to understand the paper.

  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for recommendation, but about reading paper,e.g I'll read 10 pages without problem, and I'll spend a hour for just a simple problem, this is often because of my bad understanding (in English language) or writers writing (again language), for example if you see my last question it was exactly language problem, when someone edit my question I found my answer (just changed "for" to "since" in last paragraph) In fact I'm not asking every hour one question, each day I'm reading paper may be I have one question. Also because questions are not valuable I remove them,but I think is bad:( $\endgroup$ – Saeed Jan 9 '12 at 21:54
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    $\begingroup$ I like the idea of using chat to ask quick questions. You're right that not many people use it, but this might be a good way to shunt quick questions away from the main forum without dismissing them. $\endgroup$ – Suresh Venkat Jan 9 '12 at 22:02
  • $\begingroup$ @SureshVenkat, yes it's very good to have such a feature, I think I should try it first in next questions, but is not hot here, here everyone is expert in some fields, and we can't expect to have people in our field in chat, If there was some notifications to alarm someones about discussion types in chat it was good. (e.g I know x and y are working in same field, if I can ask them to contribute in chat it will be better, e.g if I ask from 5 people may be I have a chance to talk with at least one of them in chat) $\endgroup$ – Saeed Jan 9 '12 at 22:23
  • $\begingroup$ you can target specific people in chat by using the : operator. $\endgroup$ – Suresh Venkat Jan 9 '12 at 22:35
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    $\begingroup$ I think Artem is right. One think to note however. Scientific work requires teamwork. So, if you decide that the only way to understand something is to write down a question, don't delete it. Many other students will face the same problem and be thankful that they can simply search for the answer. $\endgroup$ – chazisop Jan 10 '12 at 6:34
  • $\begingroup$ @SureshVenkat, thanks for test case, it's nice. $\endgroup$ – Saeed Jan 10 '12 at 10:11
  • $\begingroup$ @chazisop, I agree with you, but I think some months later when I'll read my questions again, I'll laughing to my problems :), As Suresh mentioned I'll try chat, but if I didn't get reasonable response I'll write them in site. $\endgroup$ – Saeed Jan 10 '12 at 17:19
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    $\begingroup$ "I'll read 10 pages without problem, and I'll spend a hour for just a simple problem" — This never goes away, and that's a good thing. The hour stuck on the 'simple' problem is ultimately worth far more than then 10 minutes of easy reading. $\endgroup$ – Jeffε Jan 11 '12 at 10:28
  • $\begingroup$ @JɛffE, thanks for recommendation, after this conversations I try to solve my problems myself. It causes better understanding for me. It makes my reading slower, but I understand something that was obvious before, in fact is not obvious and need more imaginary. $\endgroup$ – Saeed Jan 11 '12 at 20:59

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