I am writing a science fiction novel. It is my first time trying to write sci-fi. My knowledge of science is rather amateur. I have, somewhat seriously, taught myself physics and chemistry. On anything else, the base of my knowledge is simple curiosity. I've already got the basis for the plot and characters, but I still need to do a lot of world-building and add layers to the plot. I want it to be a plausible future, not a sci-fi epic fantasy (such as Star Trek, say). The thing is that I can't assume my predictions of the future are insightful enough. The story would focus more on humanism than science, but I need to put it in a feasible political and technological context.
The idea I had was to ask a series of questions on different SE pages. The thing is that, as they would be all hypothetical, I am afraid they could be deemed as too subjective. Another thing I wonder is if it would be fine to post the same question in nature, with different specifications of course, on different pages.
The nature of many of these questions would be something like: I want to get an idea of the future of Europe in 200 years time. I state some conditions, such as technology developments and geopolitical events I consider appropriate, what do you think would happen if...
That if could be, for instance, what you think will/would/should happen with the development of the data economy within the world. Would be Europe somehow separated from China, the US and Britain as their systems and laws for data protection would be too different? What would be your expectations on the matter? What would be the implications of your guess?
Now, the reason I like the idea of doing this in SE is that I like the straightforwardness, clarity and somehow professionalism of its community. I also prefer to do a survey within a somewhat closed system, rather than asking all around the Internet or keep on by myself, without other people's insight. The thing is that the question I used as an example before, I could post it on many different SE pages and get very different and valuable points of view on the matter (economic view, political view, IT view, etc). Of course, I wouldn't choose to post it in, say, the Islam SE site, although I would love to get their insight too. So, first things first... would be okay to post the very same question in politics, economics, law, worldbuilding and, say, information security SE sites?
Then, it would make some sense to post it in quantum computing, for example. Of course, I would edit the question to fit it more within the nature of that particular site, but it would, in nature, be the same question with some patches. If it's up to me, I would post it nevertheless. I really want their insight; they are different people with different perspective. But I am afraid it wouldn't be okay for many members. Am I wrong? In case it could be okay, any suggestions on how to avoid when posting the question on such relatively unrelated sites?
I can't find any specific rule or previous meta post that tells me what to expect if I do this survey. The only thing related would be this post I assume that having no particular procedure we should all agree with, it should have to do with how the community interprets it.
- So, would you approve?
- Is this totally against the whole ethos of SE?
- If there is a way to do it nevertheless, under which particular conditions?
- And also, is it fine in general to post the same question on different sites (being this survey or just two random questions related to both sites at the same time)?
- Also, from the perspective of each site... would it be considered spam to get a number of similarly designed questions with different topics? At the end, it would always be me and probably the introductory paragraph be the same in all questions.
The time invested in posting these questions would have to be taken away from the time I invest in other types of research, so I need to have reason to believe it would be ultimately worth it. Of course, if it works out as I think it could, it would be an invaluable source of ideas, information and clues on what lines of research I need to give priority to. Sort of a knowledge-based brainstorm. The inspiration I could get from it is too valuable not to try.
In response to "SE sites are not meant to only serve you" I want to add that the idea would also be that this might make for good content in the website. I am sure many of the questions could make an interesting and educational read to future users.
From what I gather from the answers I've got so far, I would be doing something like this:
- Posting a specific hypothetical question on the adequate site.
- Put into context what I need the hypothetical for but not focusing the question on it.
- Follow very explicitly the exceptions on the use of hypotheticals and subjectivity for each site.
- Wait some days to gather all the momentum of activity of that post.
Later on, if useful:
- Posting a tailor-made question on another specific site, following points 2 and 3 of the previous list.
- Even if it has a similar nature to the other question, make it as worth it to that community of experts as possible considering my own knowledge of the subject.
- Add a link to the previous question in the different site, being clear that it would only be complementary to read it and not necessary to answer this particular question.
- Ask for comment in the other post if they come up with something on the nature of the other question through the reading of this one.
This sounds fair enough to me. But I wonder if it would be less problematic to avoid linking posts to each other. I would be creating some sort of layered monster for some of the hypotheticals, and that could prove to be unpopular. The thing is that I find not sharing the links dishonest and it would also lose much of its appeal to me.
On a different note, but with regards to the acceptance of cross-posting in general, I recommend a look at this other post (7 years old):
I find its most upvoted answer quite interesting.
In the end, it is not that different from what happens when a post is migrated. Perhaps even preferable to have different replies in different sites rather than mixing everything up. On migration.