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Re: Why trig?
Posted:
Apr 1, 1997 9:39 AM


From Jack Roach: > So far, every example given either has nothing to do with an application > of trigonometry to a "reallife" probem or else it's of the form, "Trust > me, kids. It's used to build atomic bombs." Out here in the "real world" > folks do not spend a lot of time calculating the heights of various flag > poles. This may not be clear to Mr. Price but it is to students. > > Jack > > I thought the example of getting a computer to draw a circle is pretty practical. There has been mention of solving problems about triangles of one sort of another also. Is this not real world? I thought it was still an open question whether teaching is more effective using real world problems or just plain interesting problems. (Don't ask me "what is interesting?") It is quite a daring thing to throw out as obsolete a subject so thoroughly embedded in mathematics as trigonometry. Indeed, to have to argue that trig is useful in practical problems is similar to having to argue that a hammer is a useful tool for a carpenter. Don  Don Coleman  (606) 2777678 (Home) Mathematics Dept  2574802 (Office) University of Kentucky  2574078 (Fax) Lexington, KY 405060027  email: mtbb0@ms.uky.edu



