There has been some discussion about the possibility of renaming the site.

Please give a suggestion as an answer to this message and people upvote/downvote what they see as the best options.

Note: I am not advocating either changing or not changing the name

  • $\begingroup$ With the deletion of that last option, you leave not much to vote on here Omen. :) It appears to be the choice between great and great. $\endgroup$ Oct 31, 2014 at 3:11
  • $\begingroup$ The deleted message was at -2 (don't want to be post banned ;)). Feel free to suggest a possibility if you wish :) $\endgroup$
    – user22
    Oct 31, 2014 at 3:13
  • $\begingroup$ Ah I understand. :) I would prefer it not be changed, unless someone wants to spell out mathematics in full and leave all else as is, and so I have not other suggestions for anyone except "stop trying to change the name of my beloved hsm.stackexchange.com!" :) $\endgroup$ Oct 31, 2014 at 3:16
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    $\begingroup$ @Omen A single meta answer at -2 (or likely even -10) will not put you at any risk of an answer ban. You'd need a significant number of almost exclusively negatively voted answers and very few positively voted ones, and even then the system will warn you before you hit a ban. In addition, deleting posts actually increases their weight in the ban algorithm, though like I said you're not at any risk either way. $\endgroup$
    – Logan M
    Oct 31, 2014 at 4:18
  • $\begingroup$ @LoganMaingi I see, it's all good though, it was proving to be unpopular - but anyone is welcome to repost the suggestion. $\endgroup$
    – user22
    Oct 31, 2014 at 5:01
  • $\begingroup$ I thought of adding a possibility using STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics), but all my attempts seemed too cryptic or too long. $\endgroup$ Nov 12, 2014 at 15:30
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    $\begingroup$ At the risk of disturbing the elephant so soundly sleeping in the middle of the room, I can't be the only one slightly jarred by seeing the name of this site abbreviated to "History of S&M", can I? Just putting this out there... $\endgroup$ Nov 16, 2014 at 16:56
  • $\begingroup$ @IlmariKaronen LOL! That's kinda unfortunate, but not really an issue in my opinion. $\endgroup$
    – Danu Mod
    Dec 11, 2014 at 18:56

5 Answers 5


History of Science and Mathematics

I dislike abbreviating "Mathematics" to "Math", in part because the abbreviation is dialect-specific (British English speakers use "Maths" rather than "Math") and in part because it seems a bit too casual. "Math History" sounds okayish to me, but "History of Math" has an odd contrast. In modern day English, prepositions (especially those which can be avoided by transposing word order) seem to increasingly indicate somewhat formal writing, in which I would not expect to see the abbreviation Mathematics -> Math(s). I guess it was intended to smooth this out somewhat by first combining Science and Mathematics to "Science and Math" (which still sounds problematic due to the mismatch of levels of formality, but significantly less so because we've swapped the preposition for a conjunction and because there's no equivalent abbreviation of the term "Science") and then prefixing "History of" to the name, but in my mind this naturally gets distributed out to "History of Science and History of Math", retaining the confounding subphrase.

Assuming it is necessary to explicitly include Mathematics in the title (and enough comments on Area 51 seem to indicate that it is for some users here), I think it should be written out completely.

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    $\begingroup$ It's worth noting that even with the 7 extra characters needed to fully spell out "Mathematics", our name would still be shorter than the full name of sqa.stackexchange.com, and could (if necessary) be shortened by 2 more characters by replacing "and" with "&", so this should not pose any technical/design issues. $\endgroup$
    – Logan M
    Oct 31, 2014 at 3:02
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    $\begingroup$ While grateful for the current title, I have to agree, Mathematics spelled out in full is much better on any level I can think of. $\endgroup$ Nov 2, 2014 at 6:04
  • $\begingroup$ Note: I posted a comment here saying that the name might be changed to History of Science and Mathematics, and it has 22 upvotes. $\endgroup$
    – HDE 226868 Mod
    Nov 17, 2014 at 15:59
  • $\begingroup$ . . . and now 32 upvotes. $\endgroup$
    – HDE 226868 Mod
    Nov 25, 2014 at 2:44

No change

Leave the site name as it is.

  • $\begingroup$ short and simple $\endgroup$
    – Jasser
    Oct 31, 2014 at 17:28

I also do not like the abbreviation "Math". Why not "History of science and mathematics"? Personally I think that mathematics is included in sciences, but this opinion in not shared by a majority. Another option is History of exact sciences. But this may sound too restrictive, unless we really want to exclude medicine:-)


History of Science

Mathematics is a science. It isn't an empirical science. Why single it out?

Wikipedia is often a good indicator when it comes to terminology. Its main article on the topic is titled history of science, covering all kinds of sciences (natural, social, mathematics, medecine, …).

Longer names are unwieldy and should only be used when a shorter name wouldn't do. There's nothing wrong with the shorter name here.

If anything, it's medecine that could feel left out, more than mathematics.


History of Science and Medicine

Two reasons:

  1. When I see the abbreviation HSM, I think "history of science and medicine" before I think "history of science and mathematics." In addition, most of the academic departments I'm familiaar with include medicine (some of them in the name of the department).

  2. There was some discussion back at Area 51 about including the word "mathematics" in the name. One worry was that, if it isn't included, people would think math is off topic here. The opposite concern was "Why single math out?" Given the current number of math questions, I don't see any reason to worry that people will think math is off topic.

On balance, I'm more worried about prospective members thinking medicine is off topic than I am about them thinking math is off topic.

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    $\begingroup$ Perhaps they ask math questions only because they know from the name that math questions are on-topic. $\endgroup$
    – HDE 226868 Mod
    Nov 2, 2014 at 19:45
  • $\begingroup$ Perhaps a shorter version of History of Sciences may be considered, then medicine and math would be included I guess. $\endgroup$ Nov 2, 2014 at 21:51
  • $\begingroup$ @HDE226868: that could be. I certainly don't want anyone to view math as off-topic, and I don't intend to re-start the discussion from Area 51. I don't feel particularly strongly about the name. I was more tossing out this idea to see if anyone else likes it. Apparently not. $\endgroup$ Nov 4, 2014 at 0:43
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    $\begingroup$ Can anyone explain why this answer was downvoted?? $\endgroup$ Nov 8, 2014 at 20:02
  • $\begingroup$ @AlexandreEremenko, I also would appreciate knowing what people don't like about it. Is it the addition of medicine, or the removal of mathematics? Or something else? $\endgroup$ Nov 8, 2014 at 20:39
  • $\begingroup$ @Colin McFaul: I would like Mathematics to remain in the title. If this word is too long, I can live with "Math". About medicine, I am indifferent. Personally I am not interested in medicine, but there were some questions about it, and it's OK with me. $\endgroup$ Nov 9, 2014 at 1:38

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