Re: OT/misc: maths (software vs traditional...).

In article <hj31vf$2ha$1@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>, cr88192@xxxxxxxxxxx says...

"Dann Corbit" <dcorbit@xxxxxxxxx> wrote in message
In article <hj2u96$snn$1@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>, cr88192@xxxxxxxxxxx says...



You don't always have to understand something to use it (though it
certainly helps).

So you can find a math solution and plug it into a block of code without
being an expert on that sort of math.

yes, often done.
although, usually I would think being able to understand it well enough to
effectively make use of its properties would still count as understanding

It is (of course) possible to get into big trouble doing that as well,
especially if you have a numerically unstable algorithm and you give it
inputs in the unstable range. (IOW there are many algorithms that are
mathematically correct but will give horrible results when a farily
simple alternative would have given the right answer).

granted, this addresses one side of the problem:
using mathy stuff in programming.

but, doesn't really address the other side:
why an otherwise decently skilled programmer would do horridly in math
classes, even after having worked with much of the same math in the sense as
given above...

I guess that it is simply math phobia of some sort, where some kind of
inner reluctance prevents your normal ability from solving things you
are easily capable of.

My youngest son is very intelligent, but he freezes up when he sees a
complicated looking mathematical expression. He has no such difficulty
in other areas. I know many other people like that.