Search found 86 matches

by Number
Sun Nov 23, 2008 11:15 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: On the road to Jurassic Park
Replies: 1
Views: 758

On the road to Jurassic Park

If they're considering cloning mammoths, what's next? What does that mean for recently extinct species or endangered ones or even sorely missed relatives? Who is to draw the line and say "we don't want one of these guys around, thank you very much"? And how feasible is all this, really? NY...
by Number
Tue Sep 02, 2008 1:19 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: I don't get HS math oympiads
Replies: 17
Views: 2807

Re: I don't get HS math oympiads

My HS math contests would usually vary between the types where a decently well-known algorithm would work (say, computing x 3 + 1/x 3 given x + 1/x) and the questions that required some insight beyond algorithms (such as pretty much anything found past question 3 in the AIME). But it often seemed to...
by Number
Mon Jun 16, 2008 6:04 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: Amusing answers to tests
Replies: 393
Views: 61776

Re: Amusing answers to tests

[Trisecting an angle] is also possible by using origami - in which case you don't even need a compass or a straightedge - if the angle provided is on a piece of paper. Interestingly, this was part of the power question from ARML 2006. I think my team got this right... And this is more a stupid ques...
by Number
Mon Jan 14, 2008 4:13 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 0369: "Dangers"
Replies: 283
Views: 77183

Re: "Dangers" discussion

The numbers are rather inflated by now, since a large number of fora and blogs now have "died-in-a-[...]-accident" on them (1,640 for "died in a knitting accident", 17,400 for "died in a blogging accident"). What was that again about experiments that destroy their own r...
by Number
Tue Jan 08, 2008 3:32 am UTC
Forum: Books
Topic: Discworld for English class
Replies: 60
Views: 8413

Re: Discworld for English class

Thanks once again. I'll let everyone know how this worked in the end - the first suggestion is Small Gods.
Jahoclave wrote:an attack on their religious beliefs or a commentary about the post office and capitalism?
And what about the Randians for whom they are one and the same?
by Number
Fri Jan 04, 2008 5:49 pm UTC
Forum: Books
Topic: Discworld for English class
Replies: 60
Views: 8413

Re: Discworld for English class

Thanks for all your input :) Good Omens was awesome and would be fun, but I think its a bit much for this teacher (who, btw, wrote An X-Rated romance and Dating Games for ~12 year olds). I was specifically trying to avoid the witch books, because those would make the teacher most unhappy. Right now,...
by Number
Thu Jan 03, 2008 3:49 am UTC
Forum: Books
Topic: sets, trilogies, series of books that dont get worse
Replies: 100
Views: 11774

Re: sets, trilogies, series of books that dont get worse

Discworld, by Terry Pratchet
ASoIF, George RR Martin (someday he'll publish the second half of book 4...)
Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn, by Tad Williams
The Midnighters, by Scott Westerfeld ("young adult", but brilliant concept)
Idlewild Trilogy, by Nick Sagan
by Number
Thu Jan 03, 2008 3:33 am UTC
Forum: Books
Topic: Book you are proudest to have finished...
Replies: 137
Views: 16154

Re:

For me it was "A Game of Thrones" ... I just could not get into that book for some reason. I have yet to try book 2. I liked that one, and read 2, 3, and the published half of 4. I'm somewhat scared Martin won't finish everything in time. I'm most proud of the 5 books of the Aeneid I fini...
by Number
Thu Jan 03, 2008 3:01 am UTC
Forum: Books
Topic: Discworld for English class
Replies: 60
Views: 8413

Discworld for English class

I somehow convinced my English teacher to include a Terry Pratchett book in our curriculum. This means that I get to choose the book, but I haven't read all of them (getting there). So, I put it to xkcd to help me with this. A few restrictions: The teacher doesn't like fantasy very much, so books li...
by Number
Sun Dec 23, 2007 6:20 pm UTC
Forum: Religious Wars
Topic: Base 12 kicks all your asses
Replies: 88
Views: 24268

Re: Base 12 kicks all your asses

It's a matter of economy, that's all. According to one of last year's ARML power questions, ternary notation is the most efficient (#digits used*#available for each digit), and balanced ternary is a rather elegant notation. 175 10 = 20111 3 = 1n0111 balanced 3 , if n = -1. So base 3 is nice that wa...
by Number
Fri Dec 07, 2007 2:50 am UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Israel
Replies: 1040
Views: 95029

Re: Israel

And thats a good reason for using palestinian land, for housing, water, arable land and security? As far as I have am aware, Israel is naturally a desert. The arable land is rather limited, mostly consisting of the Jordan river valley and the norther parts near the Galilee. The Jews irrigated, crea...
by Number
Wed Dec 05, 2007 4:07 am UTC
Forum: Religious Wars
Topic: Underscores vs CamelCase
Replies: 108
Views: 95326

Re: Underscores vs CamelCase

thingsNamedLikeThis for Java, where theDamnClassNamesGoOnForever.giveMeABreakPlease() happens all the time. While underscores would help readability, the Java brainwashers teachers made us name everything with lowerCamelCase. For a serious C++ project, ClassNames get CamelCase - STL makes this even ...
by Number
Sun Dec 02, 2007 4:22 pm UTC
Forum: Religious Wars
Topic: QM vs GR
Replies: 7
Views: 3206

Re: QM vs GR

God does not play dice with the universe. He uses (random n).

I'm on board for GR. Big beats small any day.
by Number
Sun Dec 02, 2007 1:55 am UTC
Forum: Religious Wars
Topic: Comments
Replies: 48
Views: 11411

Re: Comments

if(0) can be used for things other than commenting, such as char *p; switch (n) { case 1: p = "one"; if (0) case 2: p = "two"; if (0) case 3: p = "three"; printf("%s", p); break; } You might confuse the person/IDE reading your code. Which, according to the art...
by Number
Fri Nov 30, 2007 12:46 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: Random thing that's bugging me: f(n) = 1, 3, 2, 4, 3, 5...
Replies: 24
Views: 3110

Re: Random thing that's bugging me: f(n) = 1, 3, 2, 4, 3, 5...

f(n) = .5(n+1) sin(pi/2 n)2 + .5(n+4) cos(pi/2 n)2 and f(n) = n/2 + 5/4 + 3/4cos(pi n) The graphs are exactly the same. I don't see how the two sides are equal at all A little algebra... f(n) = [(n+1)sin(pi/2 n) 2 /2 + (n+4)cos(pi/2 n) 2 ]/2 = [(n+1)[...
by Number
Sun Nov 18, 2007 4:40 am UTC
Forum: Religious Wars
Topic: Is Java is a bad language for beginners?
Replies: 234
Views: 134402

Re: Is Java is a bad language for beginners?

I have a feeling that the appropriate language depends on the person to some extent. I don't care what you try to teach to around half the students in the cs classes I've taken, it won't work very well. Java's upsides: It is difficult to crash a computer with a java program. Not so with C(++). Downs...
by Number
Sun Nov 18, 2007 3:01 am UTC
Forum: Religious Wars
Topic: The 1 true style
Replies: 198
Views: 167680

Re: The 1 true style

Proper coding conventions follow this guy's suggestions for unmaintainable code.

Seriously though, I'm on board for vertically aligned braces.
by Number
Tue Nov 06, 2007 3:56 am UTC
Forum: Computer Science
Topic: Calculating nCr algorithm
Replies: 28
Views: 9453

Re: Calculating nCr algorithm

Well, the Euclidean algorithm (as posted above) for calculating the gcd should be more efficient. The factorial probably takes plenty of runtime too. And beaten to it while compiling. long gcd(long a, long b) //a and b both > 0 or else { do { long temp = a % b; a = b; b = temp; }while(b > 0); return...
by Number
Mon Nov 05, 2007 2:57 am UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Levels of Communication in the Internet
Replies: 21
Views: 3162

Re: Levels of Communication in the Internet

I prefer a combination of both. Some things should be said in person, not any other way (taped telephone messages for "[person's name] has died" comes to mind). It is also easier to talk face to face than to use <sarcasm> tags and the like, especially when nonverbal communication matters -...
by Number
Sun Oct 28, 2007 12:25 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: math abbreviations
Replies: 50
Views: 8176

Re: math abbreviations

[Ouod erat demonstrandum] would probably be more correct as "(thing) which was being shown" It could also be "that which was needing to be shown." More motivation to complete the proof. Also, if you think the "exists" and "for all" symbols are abbreviations t...
by Number
Sat Oct 27, 2007 11:55 pm UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: exponential help
Replies: 2
Views: 1056

Re: exponential help

In addition to gmedina's point, consider what the computer/calculator is doing when it applies a power regression. If I remember from AP Stat correctly...linear regressions are easy, so it converts your x- and y-lists to a linear form. If you are running a power regression, then it sets z i = ln(x i...
by Number
Fri Oct 26, 2007 10:23 pm UTC
Forum: Computer Science
Topic: Creating and implementing algorithms
Replies: 62
Views: 9018

Re: Creating and implementing algorithms

I found that casework usually works (though not always optimally). Take simple examples and try to extrapolate form there. For an example, say the longest weighted path in a DAG, look at what happens with enough nodes to have a non-trivial setup but few enough to work out by hand. Some people have p...
by Number
Tue Oct 23, 2007 3:30 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: math abbreviations
Replies: 50
Views: 8176

Re: math abbreviations

In the relay portions of certain competitions (ARML and NYSML) you can find TNYWR as The Number You Will Receive. I find the most variation in symbols for a contradiction. My favorite is all the Hungarian professors I have make a lightning arrow. A Bulgarian teacher I had insisted on using this one ...
by Number
Sun Oct 14, 2007 3:01 am UTC
Forum: Coding
Topic: Humor me, I'm bored and trying to make a game.
Replies: 9
Views: 2529

Re: Humor me, I'm bored and trying to make a game.

Good luck with the game :D I found that including a way to save progress helped with both debugging and usability (after handing the beginning of the game 10 times, it tends to get annoying). Plus I could easily change stats for various (not evil!) purposes. Stats were easier to deal with when I con...
by Number
Sat Oct 13, 2007 3:33 am UTC
Forum: Logic Puzzles
Topic: Tip of the hat
Replies: 7
Views: 2470

Tip of the hat

Once again, 20 prisoners, having been held for long enough to have learned their lessons (either to obey the law or to avoid contradicting the dictator in power), are given the chance to earn their freedom. All 20 prisoners will be lined up behind a guard, with each prisoner facing the guard. No pri...
by Number
Mon Oct 01, 2007 2:57 am UTC
Forum: Coding
Topic: Funniest/Most Annoying Code Comments
Replies: 662
Views: 145975

Re: Funniest/Most Annoying Code Comments

From a single recent project: void ClearGrid() //duh //found a sandwich! else { //continue on with your boring lives //Colite mentem omnipotentem ac factum, homines! Each of the above was from a different part of the code, and the last was at the top of the file "AI.cpp." It should roughly...
by Number
Thu Sep 27, 2007 11:51 pm UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: Favorite Mathematical Equation
Replies: 87
Views: 21640

Re: Re:

Yes this one is a classic, although I think e^(i*pi) + 1 = 0 is better. Agreed -- it contains the 4 most important constants in mathematics, as opposed to just 3 of them. :) e^(i*pi) + 1 = 0 * 17. That's the 6 most important. Hah! I happen to like (out of the routinely used) Heron' forumula, K = sq...
by Number
Mon Sep 17, 2007 1:52 am UTC
Forum: Coding
Topic: C# question: Inheritance + static = ??
Replies: 11
Views: 3022

If c# allows static to work the same way as java and c++, then can't every CPiece object access CPiece::m_MovesPermitted? It then follows that if CPiece::m_MovesPermitted becomes protected, then you can just access m_MovesPermitted from any CRook object. Example: CPiece piece; CRook rook; if(pie...
by Number
Mon Sep 17, 2007 1:29 am UTC
Forum: Coding
Topic: Abstract Classes and Interfaces
Replies: 21
Views: 3879

Abstract classes are really just classes that aren't fully implemented yet and therefore can't be instantiated. Interesting statement, this one. Here I bring up the anonymous class in Java. Use this declaration for absClass (please excuse any errors due to java 6 - I learned under java 4): public a...
by Number
Wed Sep 12, 2007 3:34 am UTC
Forum: Forum Games
Topic: The More Complicated "Thread Necromancy" Game
Replies: 117
Views: 15482

73 mins for me, with +10 prime bonus gives me a starting total of 1:23.
by Number
Fri Sep 07, 2007 2:18 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: Simple (for you guys) bonus question
Replies: 16
Views: 2291

I saw a Mandelbrot question like this before. Got that one right, so here's a go at this. 2f(2) - 3f(1/2) = 4 2f(1/2) - 3f(2) = 1/4 Now we have a system of equations, and we can (to make it easier) let x = f(2) and y = f(1/2) 2x - 3y = 4 2y - 3x = 1/4 Double the first, triple the second. 4x - 6y = 8...
by Number
Tue Sep 04, 2007 6:23 pm UTC
Forum: Computer Science
Topic: Efficiency vs. Clarity of code (discussion)
Replies: 60
Views: 12082

This article is a hilarious article on code obfuscation.
So now the question becomes: Efficiency, clarity, or job security? :lol:
by Number
Sun Sep 02, 2007 3:58 am UTC
Forum: Forum Games
Topic: Connect 4
Replies: 112
Views: 16179

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o.turn = yes;
by Number
Sun Sep 02, 2007 3:54 am UTC
Forum: Forum Games
Topic: Non-Sequitur Showdown.
Replies: 4342
Views: 552324

Once a platypus, always a giant squid. Always.
by Number
Fri Aug 31, 2007 6:47 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Weird Science Teachers
Replies: 54
Views: 8247

SoapyHobo has it right. The video was taken using a student's cell phone, so the quality is bad.
by Number
Fri Aug 31, 2007 4:06 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Weird Science Teachers
Replies: 54
Views: 8247

My physics teacher was certainly neat. The demonstration on day 2 was the ethanol cannon, which consisted of a bunch of beakers that had a pair of iron nails stuck in them with a small separation. He complained that he hadn't worked in chem for a while, so they were short on the correct kind of alco...
by Number
Fri Aug 31, 2007 3:44 am UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Selfish Learning
Replies: 8
Views: 2614

He is just wondering does learning about trivia count as a *better* way to spend your time then pure entertainment. If that is the case, then I would like to warn that a little knowledge can be a dangerous thing. Sometimes, when learning trivia, you might read something like "minute black hole...
by Number
Thu Aug 30, 2007 3:26 am UTC
Forum: General
Topic: Cool things that happened on your birthday
Replies: 95
Views: 14999

1618 - Kepler discovered planetary motion law #3 1702 - Anne Stuart becomes queen regnant 1917 - February revolution in Russia. ...unless you are in Russia, in which case the date is Feb. 23, hence the odd mixture of months (yes, I know the month isn't posted, but you can look it up). 1978 - First e...
by Number
Thu Aug 30, 2007 3:09 am UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: No child left ahead?
Replies: 45
Views: 5222

let individuals have more say There is a problem with that. I live in a town with a very good public school system (according to a few newspapers, at least), but it is very expensive to live here. The result? A neighborhood with a rather wealthy, white population. Good schools tend to raise the cos...
by Number
Wed Aug 29, 2007 11:16 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: No child left ahead?
Replies: 45
Views: 5222

Not exactly the direction I had intended for this thread. Public schools are essential IMHO if for no other reason than that something needs to keep the private schools honest. The problem comes when a good public school results in expensive land which can result in discrimination. But it might be h...

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