31

Good question. It's always a good idea to now and then reflect on what our purpose and target audience is, as it often changes over time. Basically, I agree with the OP that biology SE is not really a site for professionals, at least not in the sense that professionals can come here and resolve actual research problems. But I'm not sure that will ever be ...


27

First of all, whohooo! This is great news! Thanks for the design, it does look good and I'm very much looking forward to it. I do, however, agree with @fileunderwater that most of the icons used are more about chemistry than biology. Specifically, of the various icons used, I would only identify the ones shown below as being "biological" as opposed to "...


24

The audience I wanted this site to have when I committed to the A51 proposal was undegraduates, PhD students and PostDocs in biological sciences. I'm obviously biased as I'm part of that group, but even then I think that this group should be our core audience. They have the knowledge we need, and also have still enough questions to ask. I'm generally ...


18

Soon! ...ish. The "soon" part: Biology is a strong site with great participation, great content, and a great community. As such it's been added to the list of sites we want to graduate. The "ish" part: There are ten sites ahead of Biology in the queue, and it moves slowly because we currently wait for a custom design to be built before graduating the site....


17

Please adapt these for the situation at hand, and don't just post them blindly. Please read the comment editing help page for a list of shortcuts you can use in comments (some of which I use below). Things like [help], [tour], [edit], and shortcuts to other SE sites are very useful. This is organized into three sections: Questions, Answers, and Useful Links....


17

If you are unsatisfied with the edit, please feel free to rollback the edit or simply re-edit your question as you please. I agree that the edit is inappropriate and likely would have been rejected if it had entered the review queue (This edit deviates from the original intent of the post. Even edits that must make drastic changes should strive to preserve ...


17

In my opinion, yes, epidemiology can be on-topic because epidemiology has an interdisciplinary relationship with biology. Existing tags as a mark for what is on-topic can sometimes be misleading, but the presence and use of epidemiology suggests that at minimum some epidemiology questions are appropriate. The sentence in the on topic page that applies most ...


16

There is an inherent bias in your query. Of course some new users are going to get down votes. Some get many downvotes (does your query differentiate that?) while others will get only one. You're comparing questions asked by new users, which are sometimes very poor (or even trollish), and as such, they receive multiple down votes (one I down voted last ...


15

Comments to Edit 2: This is a much better design, and a more accurate representation of biology. Good job! However, I still feel that too much emphasis is placed on the destillation setup(?), since it is repeated, and this space could be used more constructively. Personally, I would also like to see multicellular organisms (plant, animal, fungi etc). Good ...


15

Write a general question and post a general answer, then close them as dupes of it. For example: Q: If trait X would be advantageous to an organism, why hasn't it evolved? Then, just write a general answer explaining that evolution is not guided and has no knowledge of the "perfect" state. Nor is there such a thing as a perfect state, etc. Basically, we ...


15

Science is amoral, scientists are not. @Remi.b raised an interesting point in the comments of the Prairie dog question. This is a science website. Ethics should not be of concern here. If one doesn't want to answer by ethics, then (s)he is free not to answer. I completely agree that science is amoral by its nature. But this site is also for scientists,...


15

My suggestion: The Biosphere


15

Species ID question template Problem: Being especially focused on species ID questions here, I notice I spend a lot of my time asking for addition/ clarification of specimen details (e.g., better photo, location, size, etc.). Although the species-identification tag suggests adding some detail Please include as much information as possible on habitat (...


14

Throughout our time, we've striven to make Bio.SE as warm and welcoming a place as any on the StackExchange network, and for the most part I think we're doing a pretty good job. Biology isn't just about cells, medicine, pharmacology, and genetics, it's also about the world around us, how animals, plants, and other organisms interact, and larger ...


14

No. As I have already said here, in my opinion, such questions should be welcome here as long as they are good questions by the standards of SE. In my experience, such questions fall into two broad categories: Questions where the OP is honestly confused, has had the misfortune of being raised in a place where creationism or ID are taught in school and ...


14

If you search through the meta of most graduated Area 51 sites you'll find a thread like this one posted by one of our designers. They'll work up a design concept and submit it to the community for feedback. Frequently, part of the process involves the designer hanging out on meta and reading any suggestions that have been made previously, so you are ...


14

A long comment here really - First off, you're most active at puzzling. As a scientific stack, answers need to be backed up by references. For sites like puzzling, folks can just take a bash - their bash. On a site like Bio, we also take a bash, but have to find, and cite, the proper sources to back our claims up. Answering here takes effort and time and I ...


14

Congratulations to both new moderators, thanks for joining the mods. I would also like to thank WYSIWIG for being a mod since this site graduated and also for his effort to achieve graduation. I hope you will still join us, despite of time restraints.


14

My overall experience has been unfriendly and negative. Lots of negative reinforcement, no positive reinforcement. It looks like you have seven active answers and one question. These all have a net positive score. Your one question has an answer, though there are no votes on this answer (if it is helpful, you could upvote it; if you feel it sufficiently ...


13

I think that "do we need to change" is the wrong question. "How can we change" is more appropriate. For that question, I think there is a good answer, which is for you to publicize the site. Each question has a "share" link. Share those links with your colleagues. We receive a large number of questions about "pop" science topics. This is natural and, I ...


13

In general it is a bad idea to force people to participate. If posting here is simply a checkbox they have to tick off to get their grade, there is no reason to participate in any useful way. We want people to participate because they find the site useful, or because they enjoy answering questions here. We don't have an official policy on this yet, as it ...


13

AliceD Question 1 Several posts in meta have raised the possibility that our closing policy is inconsistent and applied too often. However, no clear consensus seems to exist. Do you think this is an issue on this site and, if so, what role should a moderator have in resolving it, if any? Answer Over the years the closing policy has actually been ...


13

Always flag suspicious sock puppets so that the mod team can look into it. Mods have tools to cross-check users and identify such users. In fact, using multiple sign-ins, although not recommended, is not a problem. Problem arises when users ask the same questions or otherwise perform repeated misbehavior with them.


12

I don't know if this is an issue for the graduation process but, to me, the main issue for BioSE is the problem to attract questions from active researchers, and difficult well-researched questions from professionals. The balance between general curiosity questions and research questions is still very skewed towards the former. This is not to say that more ...


12

Thanks for bringing this interesting discussion up. A gross rule of thumb could be: 'give what you get', or 'share what you receive'. Without saying that I am on the right track, nor saying that others are, or are not, I do wish to share that in my case this actually works out pretty well: I voted 1300 times, including some ~1200 upvotes. Approx 50% ...


12

Jordi made some good points, I'd like to add a few. While preparing for our exams we dont have so much time to write each and every detail....why cant the community just provide the answer without counter agitation! [...] People preparing for their exams should be given their answers. I'd like to point you to an excellent meta post on Programmers.SE. ...


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