Signal Processing community now has really set a good high standard of answer by now. Most important aspect i believe are

  1. We have seen deep understanding of algorithms including all relevant mathematics behind things.

  2. We have seen great insight from people to apply practical approaches

  3. We have seen many people fill in thorough references for further understanding or to back their claims.

However, there is something of a distraction i see in the questions - which is when questions are rather focused on Matlab implementaiton. Many questions of the format -

"My matlab code in doing this is NOT working! Can someone fix it?"

This is a point i think we need to assert a greater discipline.

  1. Matlab might be useful good tool, but not everyone is really into Matlab.

  2. Even though many people pose as a coding issue in Matlab - i have seen quite a few people don't get result simply because their understanding is not consistent. So if you understand algorithms better

  3. Matlab codes (specially copy pasted from other sites etc.) quite often are not clear enough to dig up. We are not here to solve actual matlab issues as opposed to

I think ultimately, this is a community that can help you learn signal processing better - and for that you should stick to signal processing language rather than jumping into matlab code! I think it might help if Matlab code as reference, but that should not be centered around the code musings.

If we don't be strict about this from the Beta itself, the live site will have a great noise.

Should we try to be strict about closing of the MATLAB ONLY Question?

  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for bringing this up Dipan, it would be very easy for the site to become omgMATLABplzhelp.SE if we don't stay on top of it. $\endgroup$
    – datageist Mod
    Apr 16, 2012 at 14:57
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Matlab questions can also be directed to mathworks.com/matlabcentral/answers $\endgroup$
    – nibot
    Apr 17, 2012 at 20:19
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Case 2 questions should be edited to be about the algorithm, not closed. $\endgroup$
    – endolith
    May 12, 2012 at 5:49

2 Answers 2


Oh, yes please!! We've been crying out loud about this for ages, but there seemed to be next to nil community support in the form of close votes/flags/downvotes.

From What should happen to DSP questions that have several answers/an accepted answer on SO already?:

Ideally, algorithms, ideas and approaches should be first and foremost and not code in language X. I mean, the answerer can use whatever language they feel they're comfortable in (e.g., the river detection question had answers in MATLAB, python and Mathematica), but the focus of the question should not be an explicit "give be the codez in X". Questions like show me how in any language and I'll work it out myself are also most welcome here.

Explicit requests for code in language X should be off-topic. The primary reason for not allowing questions that simply want code in X is because then we'll get overrun by which ever language is most commonly used in the particular field, and other folks who are more inclined towards theory and algorithm development part of it might be put off and leave. I can easily see MATLAB/openCV questions just flooding us if we opened the gates (in fact, we get a few such questions which you don't see because they are either promptly migrated or nuked right here).

The only exception to this is when the OP says, "here, this is what I want to achieve and I've done this in MATLAB. How can I achieve my goal" and does not expect a MATLAB fix and is willing to take pseudocode/math/other languages. See also Are "How do I do X in Y (programming language)?" off-topic? which deals with the question more explicitly.

From Are OpenCV questions on topic?

Programming wih OpenCV is off-topic. That's purely SO. Questions about how OpenCV algorithms work are on topic. In general, OpenCV questions will be of type Which OpenCV function can I use to achieve effect X?. That's a StackOverflow question. OpenCV is an API, not a particular computer vision algorithm or idea, so most questions will be programming-based.

So, please do the following on such questions:

  1. Downvote and comment, sending them to StackOverflow
  2. Vote to close as off-topic (needs only 500 rep)
  3. Flag to close if you don't have enough rep. If you have 500+ rep and still choose to flag, please vote before flagging.
  4. If it hasn't been closed in a day (we don't have many active 500 rep users), flag it and we'll slam it shut.

We don't see every question that comes through the site and it doesn't look right if a single moderator goes on a rampage to close these down. We try our best to nuke such questions when we see them, but it would be great to get community support.

So go ahead, have a field day on those MATLAB questions and flag away!

  • $\begingroup$ +1 Bingo! Will do it. $\endgroup$ Apr 16, 2012 at 15:28

We try and filter out MATLAB-only questions. Most of them either get closed (if they're not that great) or migrated to Stack Overflow (if they're good but off topic). If you feel like a question is more about MATLAB than about signal processing, you should flag it and we'll definitely take a look at it.

  • $\begingroup$ Thanks. I will try to help you in best possible ways. $\endgroup$ Apr 16, 2012 at 14:25

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