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Nightmares Do Come True

The other night I woke up in complete, blinding terror. For no reason that I can explain, I was terrified about my ability to preform basic math. So terrified that I woke up at 1 am out of a dead sleep, concerned about my ability to add 2 + 2, and other basic math skills. I'm inclined to blame the generic OTC cold medicine that must have still been processing out of my system, but I can't be sure. What I can be sure of is that it was completely terrifying and that it took me a long time to fall back asleep again.


Fast forward to today, which being tuesday meant I got to spent all day on campus, as I'd an 11-1:50 Physics lab and a 2-3:50 CompSci Lab following my normal 8 and 9 am classes. The Physics lab was actually quite fun - we were using Force Tables to create and counterbalance forces, and I ended up being the only one in my group who had half a clue what was going on and so they all used my calculations and they were perfect, no error at all, and I feel really good about that.

But anyway, we were doing the first trial though and after we put the weight on it failed spectacularly, and when I finally realized why I felt like an idiot: we were supposed to put .2, .15, and .27 kg on the hangers and had end up putting 20, 15, and 27 g on the scales. Which for those of you familiar with metric is a whole order of magnitude off. Needless to say, it was embarrassing. Though no one else in my group noticed it either.

But anyway, it was kind of interesting, considering the bizarre dream I'd had two nights ago, that this happened so spectacularly today.
  • 6 comments
I think I would've wanted you on my lab team in school... ;) That sounds like more fun than I remember physics being back in the day.
:D Don't get me wrong, we've had some hard labs, but I think this one was meant to a) give us a break after the lab reports we turned in today and b) because they'd nothing else really to do, because the chapter we're covering in class at the moment is all conceptual.

Actually, the lab report may have been part of the source of the nightmare. We had to work on it in pairs and since my group had three people, I got to write mine alone. 14 pages. Including two badly drawn diagrams, one of which had a stick figure. And multiple abuses of the subscript/superscript function.

Good thing for me, I get concepts well. It's the math the stymies me.
Good thing for me, I get concepts well. It's the math that stymies me.

Me too. Fortunately, there is really no math involved in my job, which is very nice. Any and all math is done by spreadsheets. ;)
Unfortunately it appears a certain degree of calculus is needed to be a computer programer - something about arrays I haven't gotten to yet. All I know is, my CompSci Lab was rather annoying today, as the professor hasn't really covered the topic we were doing in lab that well yet.

In an ideal world, I'd like to eventually use my degree to get into AI programing, but that's unlikely to happen, so I'll probably not need all the math I've got to take.
I am rather proud to say that I got out of college without ever having to take calc. One of the great benefits of being a history major.

Yeah, having dated a computer programmer or two, that's about all I know a use for calculus in that area. ::shrug:: Maybe you'll be able to explain it to us eventually!

Yes, and if you were programming AI (or, as I like to say, silicon-based lifeforms), you would do it right. And not end up as a bad science fiction anecdote.
The only benefit to Calc so far is being able to explain my dad's homework to him for his "Intro to Maths" class.

:D such faith in me. I'd love to get into something like that, but I'm not even sure where to begin.
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