# Formatting Sandbox III: please test stuff here

Spoiler warning: Be aware that this page contains a lot of MathJax, so it will probably need quite a while to load completely.

Sandbox II has become as clogged as Sandbox I was (and is), especially for users with 10,000 reputation or above. So, here is a new new post...

Before you delete a post here, please reduce it to one line without MathJax.

Old formatting sandboxes:

• Excellent! Many thanks for this new Sandbox! – Ed V Jun 2 '20 at 15:39
• Why do we have to reduce it to one line without MathJax? – Micelle Jun 19 '20 at 14:53
• @Micelle deleted posts are viewable by users with >10,000 reputation, so it's just a courtesy thing. Long mathjax posts make the page load slowly. – orthocresol Jun 19 '20 at 14:55
• I totally forgot to thank you for making a new one. :D – Martin - マーチン Jul 9 '20 at 16:21

### Common misspellings

This table is indexed alphabetically in the first column. Please feel free to add to it.

Wrong Correct Remarks
Breddts Bredt's [rule] Julius Bredt.
carbonation carbocation Carbonation is what you do to make fizzy drinks.
Clemenson Clemmensen [reduction] Erik Christian Clemmensen.
die dye “Die” is only for “die Farbstoffe”.
Diel's Adler Diels–Alder [reaction] Otto Paul Hermann Diels; Kurt Alder.
flourine fluorine
Friedel–Craft's Friedel–Crafts The guy's name was James Crafts, not James Craft.
Gibb's Gibbs [energy] Josiah Willard Gibbs.
Henderson–Hasselbach Henderson–Hasselbalch [equation] Lawrence Joseph Henderson; Karl Albert Hasselbalch.
iconic ionic [bond]
Nerst Nernst [equation] Walther Hermann Nernst.
phosphorus acid phosphorous acid This refers to the acid $$\ce{H3PO3}$$. See also previous entry.
pie pi/π [bond] Pie bonding is for SeasonedAdvice.SE.
stigma sigma/σ [bond] Stigma bonding is for Christianity.SE or MedicalSciences.SE.
Vander-Wal's van der Waals [force] Johannes Diderik van der Waals.
Vant-hoff van 't Hoff [equation] Jacobus Henricus van 't Hoff.

This is a simple test of electrolysis of a baking soda solution.

• Unfortunately, the formula doesn't account for bounty system. However, the general trend "less Q&As — more rep" is indeed a sign of high-quality posts. – andselisk Dec 15 '20 at 10:16
• @andselisk Yeah, it is very crude and broad brush. Just a late night thought before I called it a day. – Ed V Dec 15 '20 at 13:35
• You might be interested in: data.stackexchange.com/chemistry/revision/1349860/1660907/… This simply takes the average score of all posts of a user. If the results don't show up hit "Run Query" near the bottom. A lot of the users there are no longer active... I find that upvotes were more generously given out in the early days of the site. (Your score is 4.12.) [PS I don't know anything about databases, I just copied this query off somebody else!] – orthocresol Dec 19 '20 at 16:38
• @orthocresol Wow, many thanks for the link! Very cool and helpful: I definitely see I have lots of room for improvement! And it helps to know that upvotes were more generously given in the early days, but that is very likely as it should be. So I will delete my crude late night idea. – Ed V Dec 19 '20 at 17:00
• No problem! I personally wouldn't consider it room for improvement, actually: I'm sure you noticed it already, but upvotes are pretty random and often the Q's/A's that get lots of upvotes are ones that are more accessible to the lay person (partly due to the Hot Network Question feature of SE, where you can "jump" to popular questions on other sites and vote). I've previously dumped some of my thoughts on the matter here. – orthocresol Dec 19 '20 at 17:08

### Somebody complained that the reaction I asked about doesn't exist. Why is this a problem?

Chemistry is an experimental science first and foremost, and this is especially true of synthetic chemistry, whether organic or inorganic.

What this means is that: we don't come up with theories from first principles, then use them to predict reactions. [We're getting better at doing this using quantum mechanics, but it's still very early days.] Instead, we find out that a reaction happens, and then we work backwards to come up with a model that explains it.

The ultimate source of "truth" in chemistry is not defined by our theories, but rather by our experimental observations. The theories only exist because they can explain experimental evidence.

[Incidentally, that's why there are so many exceptions to the theories. Many of them have a limited range of validity, in that they can only explain a certain subset of the experimental observations we have. A simple example is the octet rule. It works for quite a lot of organic molecules, but can completely fall apart in other contexts.]

So, asking "why does this reaction occur?" is only sensible if that reaction has actually occurred!

If nobody has done it before in real life, then we have no way of knowing whether it would actually occur. And secondly, if it doesn't actually occur and we come up with a theory to explain it, then there is no guarantee that that theory would be correct.

$$h=\frac{I_{\text{const}}\cdot R_{\text{ref}}(1+\alpha\Delta T)}{A_{\text{filament}}(T-T_{\text{flow}})}$$

$\require{begingroup}\begingroup$ $\def\pi{\neq 3.14}$

$$\require{begingroup}\begingroup$$ $$\def\pi{\neq 3.14}$$

The ratio of a circle's circumference to its diameter is $\pi$.

The ratio of a circle's circumference to its diameter is $$\pi$$.

$\endgroup$

$$\endgroup$$

• $\pi here doesn't leak through:$\pi\$ – orthocresol Jan 30 at 15:15