Puppy Linux Discussion Forum Forum Index Puppy Linux Discussion Forum
Puppy HOME page : puppylinux.com
"THE" alternative forum : puppylinux.info
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

The time now is Sat 20 Sep 2014, 06:07
All times are UTC - 4
 Forum index » Off-Topic Area » Programming
is maths any use in learning to program?
Post new topic   Reply to topic View previous topic :: View next topic
Page 1 of 2 [26 Posts]   Goto page: 1, 2 Next
Author Message
yarraman

Joined: 28 Sep 2009
Posts: 36
Location: Melbourne, Australia

PostPosted: Thu 01 Oct 2009, 04:48    Post subject:  is maths any use in learning to program?
Subject description: is it???
 

I have a degree in maths. I have done calculus. I have done optimisation, Flux, Curl, Fourier series and so much matrix algebra that my eyes might be square arrays.

I still have all my maths textbooks. It's been years since I did it but I could probably rehash it.

Is mathematical knowledge ANY use in learning either [1] how to program and/or [2] understanding how computers work under the hood?

If I had to describe my current career path it is a computational graphic designer Smile The only times when I am reminded of maths is when I read something about computers that uses a term like "bounded" and my third year uni course on number theory comes back to me.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message 
muggins

Joined: 20 Jan 2006
Posts: 6687
Location: lisbon

PostPosted: Thu 01 Oct 2009, 07:03    Post subject:  

Discrete maths is surely relevant...otherwise both computing & maths need logical thinking.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message 
disciple

Joined: 20 May 2006
Posts: 6435
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

PostPosted: Thu 01 Oct 2009, 07:07    Post subject:  

Of course it is of use... but obviously if you wanted to learn to program you would study it, not go back and revise your maths Smile
_________________
DEATH TO SPREADSHEETS
- - -
Classic Puppy quotes
- - -
Beware the demented serfers!
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message 
yarraman

Joined: 28 Sep 2009
Posts: 36
Location: Melbourne, Australia

PostPosted: Thu 01 Oct 2009, 07:08    Post subject: ok
Subject description: ok
 

Ok. I'm interested. I did discrete maths!

Matrices?
Linear algebra?
Vectors?
Sets?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message 
rarsa


Joined: 29 May 2005
Posts: 3053
Location: Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Thu 01 Oct 2009, 14:32    Post subject:  

Here is my take.

You need good math to do some kinds of programming but it is not necessary at all for some other kinds.

e.g.
A business application requires just the most basic math skils
Creating a game rendering engine, requires advanced math
Creating the front end for a simulation requires moderate knowledge
Creating the back end may require substantial knowledge.

What's more, the math may be done by some people and the programming by a different set of people.

Having said that. Doing math wires your brain in a certain way that helps you understand abstract concepts. The same as doing music helps you understand math, even though they are not the same.

As a general observation: In my own experience math and physics grads are usually very good programmers.

If you know math you may have an easier time learning to program.

_________________
http://rarsa.blogspot.com Covering my eclectic thoughts
http://www.kwlug.org/blog/48 Covering my Linux How-to
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website 
amigo

Joined: 02 Apr 2007
Posts: 2247

PostPosted: Thu 01 Oct 2009, 16:01    Post subject:  

Generally, good programming is more about logical processes -like the ability to tranlsate a problem posed as prose into an equation which provides the answer. Unless the program is really about doing math, the conversion of the logic is more important than the actual equation.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message 
aarf

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

PostPosted: Fri 02 Oct 2009, 02:50    Post subject:  

in which prehistoric era did you get this degree? 1500? 1200? 300BC yes that was it.
didnt know they had cornflakes packets back then.

_________________

ASUS EeePC Flare series 1025C 4x Intel Atom N2800 @ 1.86GHz RAM 2063MB 800x600p ATA 320G
_-¤-_

<º))))><.¸¸.•´¯`•.#.•´¯`•.¸¸. ><((((º>
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website 
Bruce B


Joined: 18 May 2005
Posts: 11108
Location: The Peoples Republic of California

PostPosted: Fri 02 Oct 2009, 03:08    Post subject:  

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

Recruits were from math departments.

In the early days of programming we didn't always even have languages. Moreover, the price of a single kilobyte of memory may be so cost prohibitive, no way the person writing the code could get the company to provide a desperately needed kilobyte.

The programmer had to write efficient and tight code.

On many projects, dad's skill in math was really necessary.

I wanted to be a programmer, but my lack of confidence in math was the major reason I didn't pursue it.

Right or wrong, in my mind having a high level of math training or at least excellent understanding is important to being a highly competent programmer.

_________________
New! Puppy Linux Links Page
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message 
Lobster
Official Crustacean


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 15117
Location: Paradox Realm

PostPosted: Fri 02 Oct 2009, 04:52    Post subject:  

Quote:
Right or wrong, in my mind having a high level of math training or at least excellent understanding is important to being a highly competent programmer.


I think you are right
and I think it is wrong.

What about us incompetents? Embarassed
We need ASQ (not yet available in this dimension)
http://peace.wikia.com/wiki/ASQ

People who think abstractly are usually good at maths
and programming. Cool

_________________
Puppy WIKI
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website 
aarf

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

PostPosted: Fri 02 Oct 2009, 04:56    Post subject:  

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.

_________________

ASUS EeePC Flare series 1025C 4x Intel Atom N2800 @ 1.86GHz RAM 2063MB 800x600p ATA 320G
_-¤-_

<º))))><.¸¸.•´¯`•.#.•´¯`•.¸¸. ><((((º>
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website 
rarsa


Joined: 29 May 2005
Posts: 3053
Location: Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Fri 02 Oct 2009, 09:37    Post subject:  

Re: aarf

Troll alert. Let's hope no-one bites. (no-one has up to now)

_________________
http://rarsa.blogspot.com Covering my eclectic thoughts
http://www.kwlug.org/blog/48 Covering my Linux How-to
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website 
Flash
Official Dog Handler


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 11068
Location: Arizona USA

PostPosted: Fri 02 Oct 2009, 10:32    Post subject:  

Rarsa, which one's the troll? Laughing
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message 
rarsa


Joined: 29 May 2005
Posts: 3053
Location: Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Fri 02 Oct 2009, 10:42    Post subject:  

Flash wrote:
Rarsa, which one's the troll? Laughing
Hi Flash,

aarf certainly sounds like a troll looking for an of-topic argument. Calling names and making ridiculous statements. This is an interesting thread and I wouldn't like to get off topic following that bait.

I know he's a regular and maybe I'm not privy of an inside joke, but the comments sounded trollish to me. (Specially after repeating them in two consecutive posts.

_________________
http://rarsa.blogspot.com Covering my eclectic thoughts
http://www.kwlug.org/blog/48 Covering my Linux How-to
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website 
Pizzasgood


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

PostPosted: Fri 02 Oct 2009, 17:05    Post subject:  

Mathematical algorithms are often used as examples when learning to program. For example, factorials are often used when explaining recursive functions.

There are a lot of similarities between math and programming. In both you deal with a lot of abstraction.

I generally think about math in terms of programming. For one amazing moment back in highschool, I was even able to see the English language in terms of programming and the thing actually made sense. It was just another programming language. But, I prefer C and thus have forgotten most of the arcane English junk they forced into my head.

Programming is really a method of thinking more than anything else. To write a program: think like a computer and then solve the problem the program should solve, and you have just written your program. Programs are just algorithms.

_________________
Between depriving a man of one hour from his life and depriving him of his life there exists only a difference of degree. --Muad'Dib

Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website 
rarsa


Joined: 29 May 2005
Posts: 3053
Location: Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Fri 02 Oct 2009, 17:29    Post subject:  

Pizzasgood wrote:
To write a program: think like a computer and then solve the problem the program should solve.
We have different approaches. I actually do the opposite.

I think of the computer as if it was a "task force".

When I'm programming I think in terms of who should do what/who should know what

Of course I've had an OO mind since the early 90's but I think that even before when using structured development.

That helped me increase cohesion and reduce coupling while keeping a level of abstraction that other people could relate to.

Computers think "linearly" so from my perspective thinking like a computer leads to spaghetti code.

So I would think in terms of little green people running around doing stuff:

"Hey window, you should display this data"
and then thinking : should the window ask for the data (delegation) or should the data be provided to the window (Parameters) or should the windows contain the data (properties)

_________________
http://rarsa.blogspot.com Covering my eclectic thoughts
http://www.kwlug.org/blog/48 Covering my Linux How-to
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website 
Display posts from previous:   Sort by:   
Page 1 of 2 [26 Posts]   Goto page: 1, 2 Next
Post new topic   Reply to topic View previous topic :: View next topic
 Forum index » Off-Topic Area » Programming
Jump to:  

You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum
You cannot attach files in this forum
You can download files in this forum


Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group
[ Time: 0.0825s ][ Queries: 11 (0.0041s) ][ GZIP on ]