Date: Nov 3, 2012 1:32 PM
Author: kirby urner
Subject: Re: Of Sequence and Success
The "arithmetic" of this culture is all based in string operations,
meaning character strings (not string theory strings).
"aaa" ++ "bbb" -> "aaabbb"
Then they start writing functions like:
reverse  = 
reverse (x:xs) = reverse xs ++ [x]
And that's algebra. (x:xs) cuts any string but an empty string 
into first character
and the rest.
reverse returns an empty string given an empty string, but otherwise (line 2)
concatenates the first character to the end of a reversed string.
Yes, a recursive definition.
Some kids get really good at concatenating (++) i.e. their arithmetic
is really fine.
But they're not good at writing functions.
The concatenate-only crowd are quite employable and are said to have
The function writers are said to "know algebra" and will be given
further training in mathematics.
Note: [ ] is an empty list and an empty string because a string is
just a list of characters. (Yes, this is Haskell again, another math
notation, runs on machines).
On Sat, Nov 3, 2012 at 12:25 AM, Jonathan Crabtree
> The Greeks were ok at geometry yet bad at arithmetic. I made my own times table the way Euclid, Pythagorus Nicomachus learned their's and it's very hard to learn.
> My guess is more people say the Indians via the Arabs gave us the foundation of modern math.