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Who here actually understands the calculus ?

Old 02-06-15, 08:41 PM
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3alarmer
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Who here actually understands the calculus ?

.
...not that wussy differential stuff based on the limits and dy/dx, but the real genius level stuff with integrals and ****.

.........................................................................................Also, Newton or Leibniz ?
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Old 02-06-15, 08:45 PM
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Trying to get homework done before hitting the bars?
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Old 02-06-15, 08:51 PM
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I got a B and an A in differential equations in college. The second semester vector differential and integral stuff was pretty hard and the textbook was terrible.
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Old 02-06-15, 08:56 PM
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Been a long time. What I once could do is not necessarily what I can do now. But as for understanding it, yeah I do that. You know what they say, "It's just like riding a bicycle."
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Old 02-06-15, 09:01 PM
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Originally Posted by 3alarmer View Post
.
...not that wussy differential stuff based on the limits and dy/dx, but the real genius level stuff with integrals and ****.

.........................................................................................Also, Newton or Leibniz ?

DiffEq is "wussy"???
Calculus was the pre-req for it when I was in school.
I had 3 semesters of calculus, then 2 semesters of DiffEq.
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Old 02-06-15, 09:14 PM
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it took me a long time and much wasted effort to eventually find a book that explained integral and differential calculus principles so that i could understand them. i had to dig, as i suspected it wasn't as befuddling as i was led to believe.

wiki has a surprisingly simple definition of each that i can understand, but, then again, i now (think) i have a pretty good idea of what's what. but never took the time to do artificial problem solving, like they do in school.

in most books on the subject, there's usually about half a page of theory, and then right into the application. the historical development process, which is fascinating, and real life questions that motivated the innovators like Leibniz and Newton were given short shrift. eventually finding the mathematical precursors of calculus made the step to understanding it much easier. one would think from the classes that i took anyway, that it came, fully formed but immature. from out of the blue, like a chick from an egg.

i always thought it would be of greater benefit to non engineers, which are a significant minority of those that have to endure the classes, to understand the questions it answered rather than answering the questions.

BTW, what in the world are you trying to do, calculate how much it will cost to guild the underside of your bathtub? i do happen to follow gold prices. let me look it up... it's $1234 an oz. down $30 for the day.

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Old 02-06-15, 09:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Shimagnolo View Post
DiffEq is "wussy"???
Calculus was the pre-req for it when I was in school.
I had 3 semesters of calculus, then 2 semesters of DiffEq.
He didn't mean differential equations. He meant differential calculus, the easier of the two main branches.
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Old 02-06-15, 09:20 PM
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Originally Posted by rpenmanparker View Post
He didn't mean differential equations. He meant differential calculus, the easier of the two main branches.
OK, I see what you mean. There was no breaking it out when I took it, they just piled it all on in one class.
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Old 02-06-15, 09:22 PM
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Calculus? She hasn't even met us!
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Old 02-06-15, 09:29 PM
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Originally Posted by hueyhoolihan View Post
it took me a long time and much wasted effort to finally find a book that explained integral and differential calculus principles so that i could understand them, as i suspected it wasn't as befuddling as i was led to believe.

wiki has a surprisingly simple definition of each that i can understand, but, then again, i now (think) i have a pretty good idea of what's what. but never took the time to do artificial problem solving, like they do in school.

in most books on the subject, there's usually about half a page of theory, and then right into the application. the historical development process, which is fascinating, and real life questions that motivated the innovators like Leibniz and Newton were given short shrift. eventually finding the mathematical precursors of calculus made the step to understanding it much simplier. one would think from the classes that i took anyway, that it came from out of the blue.

i always thought it would be of greater benefit to the non engineer, which are the majority of those that have to endure the classes, to understand the questions it answered rather than answering the questions.
Your points are sensible, but it works both ways. My calculus education was what you were wishing for, actually theoretical calculus for 5 credit hours a semester for two semesters. We did a set of differentiation on our own the first senester and a set of integrations the second semester. That was it for applied calculus. It was all proofs every day of the week. I was the one who was disadvantaged in chemistry and physics classes and later on the job not knowing how to solve the problems. Neither approach by itself is suffuicient.
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Old 02-06-15, 09:35 PM
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I think I understand the question. Going forward (differentials) is wussy, but going backward (integrals) is the real next level stuff. Integration by parts is what separates the men from the boys.
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Old 02-06-15, 09:50 PM
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The differential form can be more abstract at times for instance the divergence theorem is usually more difficult for students to grapple with than the integral form, as in say Gauss's Law.


*edit* @Jiggle how about partial fractions. : )
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Old 02-06-15, 09:54 PM
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I am very good at integral and differential calculus,
I know the scientific names of beings animalculus,
In short in matters vegetable, animal, and mineral
I am the very model of a modern major general!

I think many BF readers have had plenty of college math classes. Do you have a question?
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Old 02-06-15, 09:55 PM
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Originally Posted by robabeatle View Post
The differential form can be more abstract at times for instance the divergence theorem is usually more difficult for students to grapple with than the integral form, as in say Gauss's Law.


*edit* @Jiggle how about partial fractions. : )
Partial fractions are what separates the men from the gods.

edit - the prof made us a handy chart with the div, curl, etc... and what they were for, whether they were a vector or scalar, and when to use them. It really helped.

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Old 02-06-15, 09:57 PM
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oh! i get the point. somebody stomped off in a huff on another thread...

i swear to god, on a different thread unrelated to calculus, i held my tongue in an admittedly snarky post i made, because i dearly wanted to add, that the post that i was commenting on reminded me of those posts where one of the adversaries stomps off in a huff, vowing never to return, and then within a page or two comes slinking back (i always imagine them in a set of black horn-rimmed glasses with the fake nose and mustache) as if nothing had happened and we were all supposed to pretend, i guess, that it's somebody else. but i didn't do that in my admittedly snarky post because i'm a nice guy.

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Old 02-06-15, 10:06 PM
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My father always says that calculus and physics prove the existence of God, as the world works in a predictable manner clearly designed around discernible rules.

I always say that calculus and physics prove that man has far too much time on his hands to try to come up with explanations for mostly random ****. Every time they find a rule, they create a new phenomenon to explain why things are slightly wrong.
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Old 02-06-15, 10:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Jiggle View Post
I think I understand the question. Going forward (differentials) is wussy, but going backward (integrals) is the real next level stuff. Integration by parts is what separates the men from the boys.
Ah, yes. You can have a lot of fun with ordinary differential equations, too. Lots of interesting stuff when you get into calculus with complex variables and Maxwell's equations and all that stuff. When I studied EE in graduate school, the professors in the math department loved it when we would come over and take their courses because we could solve problems while the math students could prove anything but never get an answer. That's not literally true, of course, but it is truthy.

Graduated with a BS in 1974 and last took a college class in 86. Been retired for 14 years and didn't use much serious math for about 10 years before that, so all my math understanding and skills, pretty rusty. Still remember how to find the natural log of a negative number, though.
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Old 02-06-15, 11:05 PM
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The problem learning calculus is that you get a lot of the reason why around cal 3 that you have to accept in cal 1. It is really not that bad. I met my wife in Cal 3 so be careful. The professor put us in groups for an asignment and introduced everyone to each other so I credit him for the introduction. She said once she saw my blonde hair and the size of my calculator she knew I was the one.
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Old 02-06-15, 11:19 PM
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Originally Posted by hueyhoolihan View Post
in most books on the subject, there's usually about half a page of theory, and then right into the application. the historical development process, which is fascinating, and real life questions that motivated the innovators like Leibniz and Newton were given short shrift. eventually finding the mathematical precursors of calculus made the step to understanding it much easier. one would think from the classes that i took anyway, that it came, fully formed but immature. from out of the blue, like a chick from an egg.

i always thought it would be of greater benefit to non engineers, which are a significant minority of those that have to endure the classes, to understand the questions it answered rather than answering the questions.
Physics and calculus should be taught as one class. No one does it that way. Calculus came right out of orbital mechanics. I had two years of calculus and a year of algebra-based physics in high school but it never made proper sense until the college physics class using calculus. Same thing with matrices, and statics and dynamics; and thermodynamics and engines.
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Old 02-06-15, 11:19 PM
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Originally Posted by hueyhoolihan View Post

BTW, what in the world are you trying to do, calculate how much it will cost to guild the underside of your bathtub? i do happen to follow gold prices. let me look it up... it's $1234 an oz. down $30 for the day.
Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post

I think many BF readers have had plenty of college math classes. Do you have a question?
...I leave my thread for an hour or two to watch an episode of "Elementary", and I find it moved to Foo ?

Both fair questions, so let me give you some background for this question on my part. I have been sick for a couple of days, coughing up lungers, and in addition was taking an online traffic school course today (for what was obviously a bum rap), so in the resulting boredom, my mind had some tendency to wander.

I was briefly involved in an "intellectual discussion" with regard to wheels (tension spoked ones) in mechanics a week or so ago, and then had the pleasure of witnessing another "intellectual discussion" regarding some other aspect of things bicycle, and engineering CV's, etc., etc, when It came to me that a lot of what we do with regard to things bicycle is ruled by what was called, in the physics for majors classes, "engineering solutions." IOW, mathematics that more or less works, but does not appreciate some of the subtleties of nuanced physics.

So in between chapters and quizzes on defensive driving and road rage, I doodled around on the internet, and quickly realized that I lack both the intelligence and the sophistication to inculcate the basic gravitational equations into what we use now to design and build spoked bicycle wheels.

I guess this was an attempt to find the smartest guy in the room (certainly not me) in an attempt to further push the envelope in Bicycling Science, which is (let's face facts) most often engineering masquerading as science (in the purest sense.) What is at stake is, to my mind, a Grand Unified Wheeled Theory, and it will probably take a dedicated team of younger researchers, in their intellectual prime, to make it happen.



That such a topic should be summarily exiled to Foo is hurtful in the extreme , and I shall be filling out the Butthurt Report Form soon, I can assure you.
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Old 02-07-15, 12:00 AM
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Originally Posted by 3alarmer View Post
I guess this was an attempt to find the smartest guy in the room (certainly not me) in an attempt to further push the envelope in Bicycling Science, which is (let's face facts) most often engineering masquerading as science (in the purest sense.) What is at stake is, to my mind, a Grand Unified Wheeled Theory, and it will probably take a dedicated team of younger researchers, in their intellectual prime, to make it happen.
Didn't see the previous discussion, but you might start with Jobst's book on the bike wheel:
Robot Check
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Old 02-07-15, 12:15 AM
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Sorry, jchen no longer participates in foo.
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Old 02-07-15, 12:41 AM
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Originally Posted by 3alarmer View Post
I was briefly involved in an "intellectual discussion" with regard to wheels (tension spoked ones) in mechanics a week or so ago, and then had the pleasure of witnessing another "intellectual discussion" regarding some other aspect of things bicycle, and engineering CV's, etc., etc, when It came to me that a lot of what we do with regard to things bicycle is ruled by what was called, in the physics for majors classes, "engineering solutions." IOW, mathematics that more or less works, but does not appreciate some of the subtleties of nuanced physics.
Not having built a wheel, I don't want to wade into that just to generalize wildly from my industry's practices. Most systems in this world were not invented as one vision from the ground up by one unified committee but instead evolved over a period of decades or millennia by many committees and lots of compromise for reasons good, stupid, or evil. In such a world there's room for parallel solutions (see photo). Engineers do care about the details but it's a business and the designs are tied down when they are good enough for the customer. I actually was told in my most recent performance evaluation, "You can sometimes polish that cannonball a little too much."


BTW, I did not just find this photo on the internet, I snapped it personally at my local drugstore.I'm unreasonably proud of it.
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Old 02-07-15, 07:02 AM
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Originally Posted by RollCNY View Post
My father always says that calculus and physics prove the existence of God, as the world works in a predictable manner clearly designed around discernible rules.
So, your dad has no problem with the wave function collapse?
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Old 02-07-15, 07:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
parallel solutions (see photo).
Do I have to?? Ewww
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