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There are lots of metrics we can use to "measure" a site, and we do, but none of them matter as much as having a healthy and happy site full of interesting questions and expert answers.

So, let's talk about site health. Specifically, your site health.

Below you'll find ten questions randomly selected from SciComp. Review them and take a look around the Internet as if you were trying to find answers to them. Are they interesting questions? Are the answers we have better than what Google has to offer? Are they easily found?

Upvote the corresponding post in this "thread" when our answer is better. Downvote when Google wins. If we're kinda on par with Google, just use common sense and your expertise to guide your vote. :)

Comment to let us know your thoughts... and if you need help, use our handy dandy guide.

Note: This evaluation will close on 11 May 2012!

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for all of your help, everyone! I'll post results and feedback later on. :) $\endgroup$
    – Aarthi
    May 14, 2012 at 19:54

10 Answers 10

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Modern resources for learning FEM

Better than, worse than, or similar to other sites out there?

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  • $\begingroup$ The answers to this post really give a good editorial on the strengths / weaknesses of each book listed, and it is rather hard to find such a cross-comparison among these books on the internet. $\endgroup$
    – Paul Mod
    May 3, 2012 at 16:13
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How is geometric programming different from convex programming?

Better than, worse than, or similar to other sites out there?

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  • $\begingroup$ So...I wrote the accepted answer to this question, and cited the canonical reference on geometric programming, which I found when I Googled "geometric programming". You could find some of the same information on Wikipedia, but none of the links I found (or used) give context beyond citing the paper and maybe saying a couple sentences about convex programming. $\endgroup$ May 4, 2012 at 3:23
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On Vanilla Preconditioners for solving dense $Ax=b$ iteratively

Better than, worse than, or similar to other sites out there?

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3
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Petsc not compiling c++ files

Better than, worse than, or similar to other sites out there?

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2
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Determining the algorithmic complexity

Better than, worse than, or similar to other sites out there?

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  • $\begingroup$ After the boilerplate "Go look at Cormen, Leiserson, Rivest, and Stein" response I think everyone (even Wikipedia) gives, the accepted answer (and other answers) give some practical advice on how to calculate the exact algorithm run time as a function of the input size. $\endgroup$ May 9, 2012 at 16:29
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How can one mathematically describe the "cartoon" type of representation of proteins?

Better than, worse than, or similar to other sites out there?

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  • $\begingroup$ We need more questions about proteins! $\endgroup$
    – tel
    May 4, 2012 at 19:48
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Reducing degeneracy in constrained (convex) optimization problem

Better than, worse than, or similar to other sites out there?

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  • $\begingroup$ You'd be really hard-pressed to find a site out there that would answer this exact question without having some domain-specific knowledge. $\endgroup$ May 9, 2012 at 16:26
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Dictionaries in pseudocode

Better than, worse than, or similar to other sites out there?

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0
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Which iterative linear solvers converge for positive semidefinite matrices?

Better than, worse than, or similar to other sites out there?

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  • $\begingroup$ The answers barely try to address the question as actually asked, but what they guess that the OP should have been asking. That might have been OK if they had asked in the comments why the OP is asking this question. Instead there was a slightly unfriendly "What's the use of solving linear system with such matrix" comment. The most useful answer might have been the reference from the comment by usero one month after the question was asked. $\endgroup$ May 6, 2012 at 20:12
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    $\begingroup$ I think we could have handled this a bit better, but overall I was happy with the response from the community on this question, which was in the gray area of possibly homework since computational scientists rarely use the old iterative solvers like Gauss-Seidel as anything besides preconditioners these days. $\endgroup$ May 8, 2012 at 19:09
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Fast algorithms to find the eigenvalues of some matrix on intervals of interest

Better than, worse than, or similar to other sites out there?

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  • $\begingroup$ The down-vote on this question is due to a bug in the stack-exchange software. My up-vote for this question actually ended at "Modern resources for learning FEM" and my down-vote for "Which iterative linear solvers converge for positive semidefinite matrices?" ended here. $\endgroup$ May 6, 2012 at 20:22

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