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Mathematics: A natural science (I'm bumped) T_T...
Link | by kuhraziemike on 2011-03-19 09:25:46
Well, title says it all. Anyways, the reason why I even posted this particular thread is because I wanted to obtain extremely valuable information regarding math.

I'm not so good in math. (Actually, I am good; the problem is actually a lack of thorough explanation by teachers, lack of simplified math material, lack of training, a different mindset -I.E a mind geared for social science-, external social pressure and various other reasons.)

Therefore, I am going to use this thread as a personal thread -there will be other personal threads related to math- as a 'medium' of relating my grievances and ask a myriad of questions. (Wikipedia and others are helpful but not so comprehensive. Wikipedia is comprehensive but is EXTREMELY UNINTELLIGIBLE to my eyes and mind. Other websites spew info here and there; useful but just not comprehensive enough. On the other hand, videos and the like focus more on solutions rather than the whole strike package: theory, explanation of terminology used, the topic's relation to other topics and the solutions.)


Anyway, let's move on to the first question.

Personally, I have a hard time with algebra and people keep making me feel as if though math is a 'glorified' 'EXAMINATION SUBJECT' that you're pathetic or a dumbass if you can't score an A.

I have had enough with this attitude and it makes me sick.

The first thing that I seriously need help in is on the topic of 'QUADRATIC FUNCTIONS'.

I believe that ever since I entered 10th grade, people have been pushing 'ROTE MEMORIZATION' 'NOTE DRUGS'. Well, enough of talking about my grievances. I am not intending to be rude, but I don't think anyone would wanna stick around to read anyway.

So, benevolent/ambivalent humans endowed with knowledge, please shed light unto to this topic so that people can benefit and that I can benefit too.

(I hope that I and others make more of these threads focusing on other natural sciences because almost every single thread here concerns physics and MATH is the 'language' of the universe. Get the point?)

Re: Mathematics: A natural science (I'm bumped) T_T...
Link | by Tenpajyousai on 2011-04-04 10:16:52
In my opinion Math IS the language of the universe. In Physics, everything is has their own law that they have to obey (ie speed of light and so on). Human's body USUALLY obeys it's own law of proportionality. Everything can be calculated as long as you know the formula and how to use it.

Algebraic equation is not your ordinary math because your are not just finding SUMS, or TOTAL but you are finding unknowns too.

In your case I think you only lack training in algebraic equation. Do lots of practice to get a grip on how algebra works. And alas, once you master algebra, all that is left is to memorize some formula and you're ready to go into the examination hall.

I talk from experience. I was like you too, I got a D for my Additional Mathematics (it is mathematic subject purely algebra in my country). After a few practices I managed to get A for my next exam =D . In conclusion, go grab a pencil, an eraser and some papers and go through some questions.

Re: Mathematics: A natural science (I'm bumped) T_T...
Link | by gendou on 2011-04-04 17:10:10 (edited 2011-04-04 17:22:26)
Mathematics is a very broad subject.
There are many frontiers of active research, but I'm not very knowledgeable of them.
Computational mathematics is an important field in the 21st century.
I can recommend some good math books to you:
Sync by Steven Strogatz
Godel's Proof by Ernest Nagel
Fermat's Enigma by Simon Singh

If you're sick of rote memorization, check out some of the writings about Richard Feynman.
It sounds like you'll enjoy his take on the nature of mathematics.

Math is the language of the universe
I see what you mean, but I tend to disagree.
Nature (or "the universe") doesn't have a language, it's just there.
We can observe patterns in nature, and describe them using a human language called math.
I do agree that any correct mathematical formalism can be translated into our human mathematical formalism.
Importantly, I wouldn't agree that what we know of as "math" is unique.
Our mathematical operators, numerical symbols, and abstracted functions are all arbitrary.
This is Nishizawa Mihashi's problem.
How his he supposed to know, say, which is the X and which is the Y axis in a graph?
He has to read about it somewhere, or infer it from context.
Having the Y axis drawn parallel to the normal force of gravity when working on a chalk board isn't math, it's convention!
But when people talk about "learning math", much of what they learn is convention.

Everything can be calculated as long as you know the formula and how to use it
Not even close!!!
For example, we have the Schrodinger equation (the formula) and we know how to solve it (use it).
Still, it is computationally intangible to model more than a few atoms.
Even back in the days of Newton, having the formula for the gravity, and knowing how to use it, a person had no way of predicting in which direction a pencil would fall when let go from standing on it's point!

Re: Mathematics: A natural science (I'm bumped) T_T...
Link | by kuhraziemike on 2011-04-05 00:55:03
Tuh think that I would have to wait so long for replies.....

Oh well, in any case....

In regards to 'hanzoaiyume3', well, actually I live in the some country as him, but I tend to use different terms for many things.... Well, I have an affinity for American English you see....

In response to Mr. Gendou, well, I can understand Mr. Gendou's point in things being 'translated' to our (human) language or understanding..... In any case, hmm, I think that it just takes some memorization and application. I've been thinking and I have come up with several possible ideas. Oh well.......

Anyways, thanks for the replies. I believe that the books would help me.

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