Tuesday, June 25, 2013


TEDxManhattanBeach - John Bennett - Why Math Instruction Is Unnecessary

I don't do math on a typical day. I am an electrical engineer; I work on X-ray spectroscopy systems.

It is true that I do math sometimes, but maybe one day in twenty. It is sometimes quite sophisticated math (probability or signal processing), but it takes no more than half an hour.

I have studied a lot of math. I have studied groups, rings, fields, field extensions, vector spaces, modules, categories, monads, adjunctions, topologies, sets, logic, algorithms, derivatives, integrals, differential forms, complex numbers, matrices, differential equations, and Laplace transforms. But I don't think about those things much anymore. I mostly do a lot of coding.

Though I suppose my job would be harder without math. The 80/20 rule still applies; I do little math because I can get it done quickly and move on to something else. If I couldn't do math it might consume my whole day.

Though I still don't see myself factoring a polynomial.

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