I learn Mathematica on my own, and use it on my scientific studies. Sometimes there are some well known commands, trivial features, or keywords that I don't know. I ask my questions to SE community and occasionally my questions are lousy due to my lack of mainstream knowledge. (Like that one.)

Should I erase those types of questions? or leave it on the site? What is the usual procedure for those (I thought it may broke the integrity or encourage another person to ask another lousy question).

  • 5
    I would suggest deleting the question, if it has not received credible answers. Otherwise, do not delete it, since doing so would be unfair to whomever posted those answers. In any case, truly poor questions will be closed by others in due course.
    – bbgodfrey
    Jan 2, 2021 at 4:55
  • 3
    Well, you got three upvotes which means it's a pretty good question, even if it got a downvote. "A well-received question is one that's open, not deleted, and has a score > 0." Your question meets two of the three criteria, so not bad. It could be improved: An example (even stolen from the docs for NDSolve) would help. I doubt the answer is the best possible solution, although it's correct in theory. There might be a different solution for FEM than for the method of lines, for instance. It's potentially more interesting than it currently appears.
    – Michael E2
    Jan 2, 2021 at 18:01
  • 1
    And welcome to Meta! :)
    – Michael E2
    Jan 2, 2021 at 18:07
  • @MichaelE2 I will definitely check other methods. And you are right, examples makes questions easy to understand. Thanks!
    – confused
    Jan 3, 2021 at 6:41

1 Answer 1


In general, leave it on the site and let the community decide what to do with it. Closed questions can still be useful to people searching for answers. The system will automatically delete really bad questions after a while (see here).

Actually for the example you linked, I wouldn't consider it a lousy question at all. It was written clearly, properly formatted and had a meaningful title. Personally I wouldn't have closed it, but obviously there's a level of subjective judgement in deciding what is "easily found in the documentation".

  • 4
    I think we play the "easily found in the documentation" card too often.
    – m_goldberg
    Jan 6, 2021 at 15:00

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