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Specifically, mine. As you would know, I am not a professional nor expert in astronomy (am an applied atmospheric physicist and a teacher and as I often say in chat, I am as dumb as a box of rocks), but I have written almost 60 questions and answers (my questions alone are over 10% of the site total).

One of my questions was listed as an example of a question of concern in an earlier meta post ad several of my questions are unanswered.

I am now concerned that my non-expert contributions have diluted the professional goal for the site. I have slowed down significantly, but are still worried.

Is there anything more I can do to help build the professional stature of the site?

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Astrophysics is a very broad topic, and this is still an extremely new Stack. Few people who can ask technical questions will have visited here yet, and there's not always someone here who really knows how to answer something.

Once we build up a more significant population of regulars, I would hope to see a greater variety in the questions, and more folks with the expertise to answer them.

No, I don't think non-technical contributions dilute the site. As long as it's relevant and interesting, it's good astronomy. Perhaps a split in the far future into separate astronomy (non-technical) and astrophysics (technical) forums would be appropriate, but right now I doubt that we have the numbers.

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    $\begingroup$ There is a difference between non-technical and non-expert - I am referring to the latter. $\endgroup$
    – user8
    Oct 24 '13 at 19:28
  • $\begingroup$ @UV-D Touché, I missed the precision of that distinction. That being said, if questions and answers are of high quality then it doesn't matter who wrote them. If you're not an expert on the topic, writing an answer will take a little research, and that's not a bad thing. Both people learn something new. Your unanswered questions are good questions, but sometimes there's something only an expert can answer well. $\endgroup$
    – Moriarty
    Oct 24 '13 at 21:22
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If you really want to help build the professional stature of the site you may be interested in reading this short answer by Robert.

We currently have a high number of theoretical questions, this isn't a bad thing, those questions are on topic, and we will continue to welcome them with open arms

But we could benefit hugely by getting more practical questions too! These types of questions arise when you grab your telescope, venture out to a hill and actually experience some issues or actually stumble across a problem you need solving. How do you maintain your telescope? How can you keep it flat on a rough surface? How can you account for problem X Y Z....

There are literally thousands of these types of questions out there and we are ready and eager to tap into them!

If you really want to help and are bothered by your own volume of theoretical questions, then please realise you are more than welcome to start throwing practical questions in the mix too! After all, that is one of our main target audiences!

So in conclusion, no, I wouldn't worry about your previous questions, you haven't single-handedly ruined the site, quite the opposite, you have provided a large amount of on-topic initial questions to get us started, I can tell you are ready and eager to help the site succeed and the best way we can achieve that is to lead by example! The best way we can do that is to have a higher percentage of practical questions and answers.

Hope this helps!

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  • $\begingroup$ Okay, the only practical side of things I have is about amateur radio astronomy... I will see what I can do. However, theoretical (planetary) astronomy is where my passion is and planetary atmospheres is about as cloe as expert as I go. $\endgroup$
    – user8
    Oct 25 '13 at 19:49
  • $\begingroup$ I will make a compromise, Will only ask about radio astronomy, but will answer anything I can. $\endgroup$
    – user8
    Oct 25 '13 at 19:56

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