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One question that has paticuarly caught my eye is Using multiple laptop battery packs to power everything. It seems more like about batteries than Arduino. The OP doesn't even mention if he's using an Arduino, just that he's building a robot and his question was rejected on EE.

Although the OP never mentioned it is using Arduino, he probably is to post it here. Still, why would it be acceptable to make it on topic by saying it's for an Arduino project? On SO you can't ask about an Excel spreadsheet if you say "it's my budget for buying hardware so I can code."

This is not to decide the future of that post, it is to make a clear policy of when an electronics question should be closed. This is an essential part of our scope and I feel like we need to get this clarified before moving on to more important issues. What should we do?

  • 1
    It can be a tough call - in the course of writing an answer for arduino.stackexchange.com/questions/1490/… I was very tempted to flag it as unrelated to arduino. But ultimately, I realized that the ATmega A/D would be a serious limitation - so in a way it does. – Chris Stratton May 10 '14 at 21:06
  • For that specific question, the OP mentioned he asked on EE first but it was deemed off-topic there 5I really wonder why by the way). You're wrong when you say the OP does not mention Arduino, he did it in his very first sentence where he mentioned he's building a robot with multiple Arduinos. – jfpoilpret May 11 '14 at 21:33
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Some people treat Arduino as the hobby/amateur electronics SE so anything that wouldn't belong in EE but mentions Arduino goes here.

We need to make a decision:

Accept the fact that not every question is appropriate in one SE or another. There will be questions that do not belong anywhere. Questions like this would be closed as off-topic because they have almost nothing to do with Arduino.

OR

Let this community be amateur electronics where we help with all aspects of projects that involve Arduino.

I'm in favor of the first option. I think we, as mods, need to draft a "What topics can I ask about?" post and let the community make suggestions on changing it.

  • For the post, it's in the help center, but ideally we should have one large thread where people can suggest scope changes as an answer. Also, for option number one, where would the voltage regulator question stand? Off topic? I kinda like this rule of thumb: "If you don't need to know anything about Arduino, then it's off topic." However, that might be a little too tight of a scope... – Anonymous Penguin May 10 '14 at 20:23
  • Yeah, we have to limit the scope while ensuring we aren't restricting it too much. – sachleen May 10 '14 at 21:17
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There is a place for embedded electronics questions, Embedded.SE or EP&D for short. Perhaps you can add us to your migration path. Questions about embedded hardware and software are on topic. Questions about user space software (for ex., Android and iPhone 'apps') are largely off topic.

That being said, the specific question the OP referenced would be on topic at EP&D, even though the (as of now unedited) questions does in fact state that he is using 'multiple' Arduinos to control the robot. It has been a debate on whether or not certain questions are on topic at EE.SE, but the fact is the community there only wants certain types of questions on their site, hence the need for EP&D.

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