Somewhat related to this meta question, discussing the proper mix of high-level and common-knowledge level content on a technical SE site, I'm wondering about how we might best go about answering questions on different levels of technical sophistication. In particular, is it problematic when a highly detailed answer is provided to a 'lighter' question, potentially confusing an 'early learner' who hasn't yet been introduced to the finer subtleties of a topic?
- A homework question asking about p-orbital magnetic quantum numbers (to be fair, answerer was jabbing at a blatant copy-paste homework question)
- A short question about electron orbitals, electron shells, and probability distributions (I'm the culprit this time)
Essentially, given the slow, progressive manner in which modern chemistry education introduces the subtleties of the topic, should we try to answer questioners as close to their level of chemical understanding as possible, even if a "more correct" answer could be provided? Or, should we strive to answer on both levels, to assist both the questioner and potential future searchers looking for more depth?