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Science forum ratio?

  1. Apr 8, 2006 #1
    Ok, I'm on the Board view. I scroll down. There is 5-6 physics forums, 5-6 mathematics forums but below only one for biology and chemistry.

    I assume that PF (as the name) was originally though for physics and math?

    Are there any plans to expand biology, chemistry etc. to own categories or is that only if and when they are more active? Might it be becuase that would kind of make PF deviate from its "Theme" (physics, mathematics)?
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 8, 2006 #2


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    Look at total threads for each forum. What you're seeing is an empirical breakdown to manageable size for each category of questions. Are there some that could be merged? Sure, and they get merged once traffic levels over time stay low enough that it's not necessary to handle them separately. Are some at high enough traffic levels that they could be split further? Certainly. Do additional categories and more detailed posting guidelines help posters place questions appropriately? No. Do the thread counts include deleted spam, posts that were misplaced and moved? Dunno. The mods oughta be able to tell you.

    Expand Chem & Bio? Why? Half the threads in each could be deleted and never missed --- FAQ material and "nut" topics. "Mind & Brain" was spun off from Bio (personal opinion: waste of time and effort, plus turned into a "strange attractor" for, shall we say, unconventional speculations).

    PF isn't chiseled in stone as far as format, but don't bug the mods over "the need" for more Chem, or Bio, or Met., or Econ, or other personal pets --- they try things when they get around to 'em --- some things work --- some things don't --- and some things just take time.
  4. Apr 8, 2006 #3

    Tom Mattson

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    You are looking at the expansion. We used to just have a single forum called "Other Sciences".
  5. Apr 8, 2006 #4


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    I really don't think it's half the threads. We don't have a huge number of biologists here relative to the number of physicists (no surprise considering the forum is named Physics Forums), but we have a decent representation. The challenge is that very few of us work in the same field of biology, so it's harder to get into deep discussions on any given topic, so most of the threads are helping people with more basic concepts. But, I agree there's no reason to expand the forums further when we don't have enough people here to contribute to them.

    Actually, it wasn't just spun off bio. It was created because there were quite a few threads on the mind and brain in biology, social sciences, and philosophy that really bridged all three topics. There is also a core group of people here with an interest in neuroscience sufficient to warrant a new forum. ALL of our forums are a "strange attractor" for unconventional speculations. The physics mentors just have faster reflexes than those of us in M&B when it comes to hitting the delete post button.

    We don't mind being asked from time to time, as long as people accept that we may not indulge them in their requests. Sometimes these requests do end up with enough support of the membership and there are enough existing posts on a topic to warrant the change that the timing is right to bring it to our attention, and sometimes, as in this case, there just aren't enough posts on specific areas within a subject to warrant splitting them into a new forum.
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