I was recently alerted to the existence of a "History of science and mathematics" SE (currently in beta). I think I'm missing something about SE creation - why has this entered beta? It seems to fail all four of the test questions in "Should my idea be part of an existing site, or its own site?" on the Area 51 FAQ:
Should my idea be part of an existing site, or its own site?
In general, if a site makes sense as part of a bigger site, it's better to have one big site than a bunch of little niche sites. Site X should be subsumed by site Y if:
- Almost all X questions are on-topic for site Y
- If Y already exists, it already has a tag for X, and nobody is complaining
- You're not creating such a big group that you don't have enough experts to answer all possible questions
- There's a high probability that users of site Y would enjoy seeing the occasional question about X
In this specific question, I would say points (1) and (2) are met because of the existence of the history tag, which shows that questions about the history of biology are on-topic here. Regarding point (3), the stated reason for keeping HSM.SE and History.SE separate here is that they want to solicit answers from scientists, suggesting that the target community will be better reached via Biology.SE than via HSM.SE (I have been on here for ages and only just discovered the existence of HSM.SE). I don't know what other users think about it but I certainly don't mind seeing the occasional history-of-biology question on history on Biology.SE (I was actually about to ask another one about an odd piece of equipment I saw during a recent tour of Louis Pasteur's lab in Paris).
Whatever the criteria are, they seem to be being enforced unevenly. I inadvertently helped to get a proposal for an ecological statistics SE closed some time ago by asking for clarification on whether it should be simply a new tag on Biology.SE, even though in my opinion that had a better defined and larger potential audience than HSM. I note there is also a bioinformatics proposal on Area 51 at the moment, which I suspect would be very similar to the (closed) ecological statistics one, but it hasn't been closed. I don't understand why HSM is okay, why Bioinformatics is (possibly) okay (despite the existence of a bioinformatics tag which has so far been used for 746 questions), but ecological statistics was not (even though we don't even have an ecological statistics tag!).
Personally, I'd be inclined towards lumping rather than splitting on this, given how the SE format works.
(Full disclosure: I found out about this because one of my questions was closed as 'more suitable for the HSM site', but I'm not particularly bothered where that question ends up.)