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    • CommentRowNumber1.
    • CommentAuthorPeter Heinig
    • CommentTimeJul 31st 2017
    • (edited Jul 31st 2017)

    [new thread since “irreflexive relation” was not found among the LatestChanges threads]

    A few day ago I added a standout box to irreflexive relation suggesting clarifying a notation.

    I did this since there seems to be something to be clarified, but there is, as far as I can tell, nothing more to do than replace xxx\nsim x with ¬(xx)\neg\, (x\sim x), and

    • I thought the standout-box-route to be the most efficient and silentest.

    Since this appears not to have worked out, this message.

    Again, it seems that \nsim is nothing else than an abbreviation, definitionally-equal to ¬(xx)\neg\, (x\sim x). It seems to be that this should be spelled out, the \nsim not being defined anywhere (definitely not on the page itself, and I looked around a bit), and it is at this point most probably not meant to denote an apartness-relation, distinct from the relation \sim, i.e., \nsim is not a relation symbol, in other words, not part of the syntax, rather part of a meta-syntax.

    • CommentRowNumber2.
    • CommentAuthorMike Shulman
    • CommentTimeJul 31st 2017

    It’s pretty standard that slashing through a relation means negating it, but there’s certainly no harm in stating that briefly. I’ve done it. (Regarding standout and query boxes, see here.

    • CommentRowNumber3.
    • CommentAuthorPeter Heinig
    • CommentTimeJul 31st 2017
    • (edited Jul 31st 2017)

    Re 2: Thanks. That questions in query boxes (the green ones!) are deprecated nowadays was not known to me. The reason I used it was (0) the HowTo gives instructions how to do them, (1) I have seen other such questions in boxes in articles.

    Suggestion of an improvement: to add, in

    this HowTo section

    a sentence like “Do not use this for questions about articles, at most, sparingly, for emphasis in articles.”

    and perhaps a link from the above-cited HowTo section to the section you linked to.

    • CommentRowNumber4.
    • CommentAuthorMike Shulman
    • CommentTimeJul 31st 2017

    There’s a difference between “standout” boxes and “query” boxes, although on reflection I can see that this is not made clear. Standout boxes are not deprecated, although we don’t use them very much; they’re not used for asking questions or suggesting improvements; they’re just used to emphasize something or set it apart from the text (kind of like “fixme” marginal notes). Query boxes are a different color, were used for asking questions and having discussions, and are now deprecated. I’ll try to clarify this on the instruction pages.

    • CommentRowNumber5.
    • CommentAuthorMike Shulman
    • CommentTimeJul 31st 2017

    Hmm, actually I see that this is explained at HowTo: the section How to leave comments and questions says

    First of all, you should probably put comments and questions on the n-Forum… if you just put up a query block and don’t post anything to the Forum, you’re not very likely to get a quick answer. Query blocks are really only useful when Forum discussion has been unsatisfactory and some kind of reminder needs to remain on the page.

    And the following section How to make a standout box says

    If you want to make some text stand out (an important theorem, or slogan), you can do it using a standout box. [emphasis added]

    I’m not sure how to make this more clear. It might help if you can explain what confused you about it.

    • CommentRowNumber6.
    • CommentAuthorPeter Heinig
    • CommentTimeJul 31st 2017
    • (edited Jul 31st 2017)

    Mike, thanks for the answers.

    First of all, there was a slight terminological confusion introduced by me: it was to correct that I described the box I created as a “standout box” (the red ones), yet as you correctly point out, it was incorrect to amplify your answer into “standout boxes are deprecated” (these are the green ones). Thanks, I edited the amplification in the description of the like .

    I’m not sure how to make this more clear. It might help if you can explain what confused you about it.

    It was simply this: why the box was made at all: since at the time I thought this even the right way to proceed for this issued which to me almost-certainly seemed purely notational.

    Why I was lead to amplify your response to “deprecated”: I read the HowTo, if at all, selectively, either searching it, or, in this case, clicking on what you linked to. Well, and this, in short, clearly seemed like a “Don’t!” to me: the first thing I saw after clicking on the link is “Anything I shouldn’t do?”, then I read the following (skippable, is just the three first paragraphs in the current version of Anything I shouldn’t do

    Specifically, there are some features enabled by the software, but which are somewhat deprecated or downplayed at this point in time in nLab culture. One such feature is the “query box”. This was once used so that someone reading an nLab article could insert a question or even have a running sequence of comments embedded right there within the article. But we found this didn’t really work well, one reason being there it didn’t notify author(s) that a question was being asked, so that you’d see the query only if you chanced to go back to the article. Some queries might sit for years before being noticed! And we’re still trying to clean up query boxes. So please don’t use this the query box feature – we ask that you ask your question or post your comment directly at the nForum. If you see an ancient query box, you or someone else should shunt it over to the nForum which serves an an archive as well.

    To me, this still reads like a rather clear “Do not use query boxes.”. To me, the terminological confusion aside (we are only speaking about query boxes, the green ones), it still seems to be the case that

    • HowTo discourages the query boxes in a qualitatively different way than writing in the nLab; the former reads like “query boxes won’t get you an answer anytime soon, but that’s all”, the latter reads like “query boxes bad, don’t”, and my suggestion was and still is

      • to make the relevant HowTo section more like the “bad, don’t” kind of discouragement of query boxes.
    • CommentRowNumber7.
    • CommentAuthorMike Shulman
    • CommentTimeJul 31st 2017

    Well, maybe I’ll try to emphasize it more, but to me “you should probably put comments and questions on the n-Forum” and “Query blocks are really only useful when Forum discussion has been unsatisfactory and some kind of reminder needs to remain on the page” seem pretty explicit. In this case, there was no Forum discussion to have been unsatisfactory.

    • CommentRowNumber8.
    • CommentAuthorMike Shulman
    • CommentTimeAug 1st 2017

    Okay, I tried to clarify/emphasize these two HowTo entries.

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