This user has been asking a spate of questions on various sites with the same text except substitution of X for the name of the site.

Examples of evolving networks in X

I'm a master student working on networks analysis in general. A network is something that has nodes and there are links between the nodes. Nodes and links could have attributes. An evolving network is one that changes overtime (new nodes and links are added..etc). An example of that is Facebook. Nodes are users and links represent the friendship relationship. Users have attributes (gender, age ..etc). A Facebook network as you know is an example of a social network.
The issue is that so many people studied traditional evolving networks like social networks, the web, or transportation networks. Currently I'm looking for novel examples of evolving networks to study them. So I thought there might be some examples or applications in X that could represent some kind of an evolving network.

So my question: Can you give me examples in X for evolving networks?

I don't feel that this type of behavior represents genuine effort on part of the OP. This is not exactly cross-posting, hence my question is not a dupe of this or this.

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    That's pure and simple site bombing. And asking for external resources is off-topic on just about all of Stack Exchange sites. – Martijn Pieters May 27 '14 at 21:55
  • But.. isn't that doing research? By asking the question, this person is looking for answers. It doesn't seem to be malicious at all; maybe this person has learned that Stack Exchange is a really good place to learn new information. More fitting would be if they could ask this question to a network or complex systems type of forum, and I know that a couple have been proposed in Area 51, namely Network Science and Complex Systems. – Stu May 28 '14 at 3:23
  • Lastly, people on the different sites may want to take a stab at answering the question in different ways. It would be great to read through all the different answers, and how people approach the problem from different backgrounds. – Stu May 28 '14 at 3:25
  • This also brings up an interesting question: if you have a specific question the requires knowledge from two different Stack Exchange professions, which one do you ask? Is there a limit to how many you can ask? – Stu May 28 '14 at 3:29
  • @Stu - worth an answer. – Deer Hunter May 28 '14 at 3:33
  • This is so meta. Asking questions about asking questions. – Stu May 28 '14 at 3:35
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    @Stu I don't think shotgunning the same question, with minor tweaks, is in any form acceptable. If your question is so generic that all you need to do is replace the base subject, then chances are extremely good it's not a good question to begin with. By dumping this across so many sites, it doesn't sound like the user has really thought his question through very well, and should be sent back to think about it some more. The manner in which this is done makes me think SE is being substituted for proper research. – fbueckert May 28 '14 at 3:46
  • I disagree that it's not a good question, but I get the feeling I will be in the minority here. Coming to Stack Exchange for answers is doing research. It's not information you can directly cite, but it helps guide you in the right direction. It's learning, and this person's question is going to help start their research. I see nothing wrong with that, and if Stack Exchange doesn't allow for similar questions to be asked on different forums, it won't allow for any cross-boundary development among the StackExchanges. That's obviously not a huge concern, but it could help the websites develop. – Stu May 28 '14 at 4:16
  • Here is an example. I have actually wanted to ask this question for a while. Which SE would you say it belongs in? Space Exploration - Physics – Stu May 28 '14 at 4:48
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    @Stu - nah, your example is a simple cross-post. – Deer Hunter May 28 '14 at 5:06
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    @Stu You're under the assumption that the SE network is for learning. It's not; it's to create a repository of high quality information. Learning is a helpful side benefit, sometimes, but that is not the primary focus. – fbueckert May 28 '14 at 13:12
  • @Stu I wrote up a good explanation about cross posting on Arqade. The gist is that, just like duplicates, you are fragmenting the effort involved. You're also not putting enough thought into the question to focus the question enough to properly appeal to the experts on the site you're asking about. – fbueckert May 29 '14 at 16:01
  • @fbueckert Thanks for the link. Very appropriate explanation. I am on board with this, although surprised that you say learning is a side benefit and not a primary focus. Building a repository of high quality information is useless if no one is learning from it. Learning is what gives the repository value. Anyway, I agree with you about the cross-posting now, so thanks for the link. – Stu May 29 '14 at 16:07
  • @Stu By building a repository of high quality information, though, you enable learning just by it existing. It's the best kind of learning, where you can find the information you need, and don't need to ask your specific question for it to happen. The misunderstanding comes from users believing learning is the primary goal, therefore their questions are the whole point of the site, when they're not. – fbueckert May 29 '14 at 16:10
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    @Stu And with those well formed questions, we create a repository that can help users for a very long time. Ask one, answer once, read many. – fbueckert May 29 '14 at 16:14

I've always seen the SE network more as a refinement tool, rather than a blunt instrument to hack away with.

What I see here is a grad student trying to figure out what to do their thesis on. They have a rough idea of what they want, and they're looking for somewhere to narrow it down to. That's still part of the hacking part, as there's no real problem to be solved. It's, "Can you give me ideas?" and, "Point me in the right direction". SE is about the fine tweaks to get over a speed bump, not crashing headlong into a brick wall. Okay, I'm done with my analogies.

I can't speak for other sites, but at Arqade, such general questions don't really work very well at all. We're more about focused, specific questions, that have a problem.

This question bears all the hallmarks of cross-posting, changes notwithstanding. If a question is so general that you can change the base subject, and otherwise be functionally exact, chances are extremely good the question itself is pretty vague. I'd recommend closing it on every site, and give the asker a chance to think it through some more. Being someone's research assistant isn't a part of any site in the SE network (I think; correct me if I'm wrong, please).

These might be really good questions, after some editing. But I'd say it needs more thought behind them to hit that point. This is currently the functional equivalent of a shotgun, in an attempt to bypass the gross research someone needs to do to refine a thought.

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