The tag has 87 questions and 16 followers, but it isn't clear to me what it's supposed to be used for. The tag wiki does not help much:

Stories about science, or questions about the science of a story

Questions about real-world science are off-topic, and I don't know why we would need a tag to designate stories that are about science specifically, or how we would judge that.

That leaves questions about in-universe science, like what exactly happens if you cross the streams in ghostbusters, perhaps.

I propose either changing the tag wiki to say that it's for explanations of in-universe science, or nuking the tag.


Quoting from Gilles's excellent answer to a related question:

The tag is about the physics of a fictional universe, like is about languages in a fictional universe, is about magic in a fictional universe and so on.

I don't see why there shouldn't be a tag. It's not about real-world physics, any more than is about real-world magic.

Science, like , , s, , , etc., is a common enough trope in SF/F literature to be worth its own tag, provided we make clear what types of question would be on-topic in this tag.

However, I definitely agree that the current tag wiki for isn't good enough. I suggest the following tag wiki excerpt (thanks to @Mazura):

For questions about the fictitious in-universe science found in works of speculative fiction. Questions purely concerning real-world science are off-topic.

... and the following tag wiki (based heavily on @Gilles's tag wiki for ):

Use this tag if your question is about the fictional science found in the universe of a work of science fiction or fantasy. Note that this site is about fiction, not about real-world science. Expect answers based on internal consistency or author fiat ('Word of God').

If your question is about:

  • how the in-universe science relates to real-world science, ask here, but do not necessarily expect answers from experts on real-world science.
  • real-world science, your question is off-topic here. You might consider asking on one of the science-based Stack Exchange sites.

Please see this discussion thread for more detail about our policy on science questions.

  • I guess physics and astronomy aren't science!
    – user31178
    Feb 20 '16 at 22:25
  • @CreationEdge They are, and I think those tags are also fine provided they have clear usage guidance (as physics does). I guess there's an argument for getting rid of science and replacing it by more specific tags such as physics, astronomy, chemistry, etc., but then those tags might not have many questions each.
    – Rand al'Thor Mod
    Feb 20 '16 at 22:28
  • I dunno, I remain skeptical. Has anyone proven physics is science?
    – user31178
    Feb 20 '16 at 22:32
  • I had to look up author fiat.
    – Mazura
    Feb 24 '16 at 15:53
  • @Mazura Er ... so did I. Most of that tag wiki came from Gilles. Edited slightly.
    – Rand al'Thor Mod
    Feb 24 '16 at 15:58

It seems in your post the tag, you're implying that the best use of the tag is for explaining the in-universe science is a work of fiction.

However in much the same way that we don't need a tag for because it should be implied for the majority of questions about plot, I feel the same holds over with .

  • Could the person who disagrees, explain?
    – AncientSwordRage Mod
    Feb 20 '16 at 18:57
  • I disagree, sorry. For my explanation, see my answer :-)
    – Rand al'Thor Mod
    Feb 24 '16 at 15:45

New tag description:

For questions about the fictitious in-universe science found in works of fiction. Questions purely concerning real-world science are off-topic.

  • Thanks; added to my answer.
    – Rand al'Thor Mod
    Feb 24 '16 at 15:35

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