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 Forum index » Off-Topic Area » Programming
is maths any use in learning to program?
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sunburnt


Joined: 08 Jun 2005
Posts: 5010
Location: Arizona, U.S.A.

PostPosted: Fri 02 Oct 2009, 17:39    Post subject:  

Simple math is often used, complex math is used when the app`s. of that type (CAD, Statistics, etc.).
The concepts of programming are deceptively simple, only 2 basic methods for nearly all languages.
Branching and looping, and that`s it! The syntax of the particular language determines how easy it is to use.
Most languages are designed to do a certain job, and do it well, but are not so good at other things.
Some languages are very powerful compared to more common ones, sometimes making it hard to use.
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dogle

Joined: 11 Oct 2007
Posts: 328

PostPosted: Fri 02 Oct 2009, 18:24    Post subject:  

yarraman, cheer up, I share your pain (in real life, I've scarcely ever touched upon the maths over which I shed so many buckets of blood toil tears and sweat).

By coincidence yesterday afternoon I was standing before Kelvin's Harmonic Analyser, yep, the real thing, a bit baffled.

I didn't know of his work on computing.

Afterwards, I searched, as one does.

Search ' harmonic kelvin analyser'.
Awesome.
Fascinating.

O how I wish I could remember enough maths to understand that great mathematician's thought processes in 'programming' in ... 1886
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Pizzasgood


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 6270
Location: Knoxville, TN, USA

PostPosted: Fri 02 Oct 2009, 19:16    Post subject:  

Good point. And an important one. A good programmer needs to be able to think in several ways. Human thinking for the organization, and computer thinking to do the grunt-work (individual methods). You also need to be able to think like the client to make the interface intuitive.
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mikeb


Joined: 23 Nov 2006
Posts: 8041

PostPosted: Sat 03 Oct 2009, 12:19    Post subject:  

Hmm programming language
I definately find the learning curve very similar to learning a foreign language with the other similarity that it gets easier with each new language.

As for maths.....an electronics analogy...
Higher maths is only used in such areas as component design......for most areas the ability to use a pocket calculator is enough.


just my 2.342837323 e-45 cents worth

mike
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Bruce B


Joined: 18 May 2005
Posts: 11080
Location: The Peoples Republic of California

PostPosted: Sat 03 Oct 2009, 16:45    Post subject:  

aarf wrote:
Bruce B wrote:
Dad is a computer scientist. He graduated with a masters degree in math. In those days universities didn't have computer classes.

my apologies i had forgotten that there were still dinosaurs roaming the earth or that the ones that do don't need to breathe for the past 30 years.
how does one do advanced maths without using even at minimum a programmable calculator? ok they still had slide-rules ( a form of calculator) around in some numbers even just 35 years ago.


Aarf,

As I understand it, in the 1950s, the government, (military) were the people with the money and interest to develop computers.

With not even programming languages, they didn't recruit programmers, as there was no such thing.

The recruits were people who graduated with high marks in areas of math and other sciences.

The title dad got was 'computer scientist' and the title stayed even as computers evolved.

Over the years, he learned many languages. The last being C and he stayed there. His prestige, ability, reputation, contacts and all helped him to keep employment, even when programmers were looking for work.

============

I'd tease him like this: What's the difference between a computer scientist and a computer programmer?

Answer: About 50 dollars an hour

============

It's good to have a dad, especially when he is a good dad.

Of course he's older than I, but the truth is he's also a lot richer, more organized and productive than myself.

I love the man. I told him I expect to take care of him when he gets old.

He said the doesn't expect to get old.

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aarf

Joined: 30 Aug 2007
Posts: 3620
Location: around the bend

PostPosted: Sat 03 Oct 2009, 16:52    Post subject:  

Quote:
Of course he's older than I
i am pleased we got that sorted out.
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mikeb


Joined: 23 Nov 2006
Posts: 8041

PostPosted: Sat 03 Oct 2009, 17:38    Post subject:  

Smile @ Bruce B
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PaulBx1

Joined: 16 Jun 2006
Posts: 2308
Location: Wyoming, USA

PostPosted: Fri 09 Oct 2009, 14:37    Post subject:  

Quote:
Having said that. Doing math wires your brain in a certain way that helps you understand abstract concepts.


Yeah. Programming is about solving problems. Math is good at teaching you to do that.
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01micko


Joined: 11 Oct 2008
Posts: 7785
Location: qld

PostPosted: Fri 09 Oct 2009, 18:03    Post subject:  

Hi

I'm not all that edumacated, but after using bash I finally found a use for my high school algebra smarts!

Cheers

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mikeb


Joined: 23 Nov 2006
Posts: 8041

PostPosted: Fri 09 Oct 2009, 18:20    Post subject:  

bash makes grown programmers cry.....
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01micko


Joined: 11 Oct 2008
Posts: 7785
Location: qld

PostPosted: Fri 09 Oct 2009, 18:53    Post subject:  

...so it's ok for me then Laughing
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