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View Diary: The algebra formula that saved an industry (258 comments)

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  •  How many people who don't know algebra (7+ / 0-)

    are going to grok compound interest? Especially where credit cards are concerned?

    Algebra is probably the most real world functional math there is.

    •  I failed my algebra classes (1+ / 0-)
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      and I work in a budget shop doing things even more exotic than compound interest.  Algebra classes are taught quite badly.

      Repubs - the people in power are not secretly plotting against you. They don't need to. They already beat you in public. (Bill Maher)

      by Sychotic1 on Mon Apr 19, 2010 at 02:12:41 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  math courses (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Sychotic1, Larsstephens

        ...are taught by math professors/teachers who pound the rote memorization and very poorly constructed "word problems" which don't engage the brain well.

        They SHOULD be taught using a combination of pure math and "not hockey/dumb" real world application examples.  

        A left-of-center blow-harded member of the goose-stepping blog-stapo since 2004.

        by floundericiousMI on Mon Apr 19, 2010 at 02:24:06 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  yep. wasn't presented in a way that was (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Sychotic1, Larsstephens


        my favorite example is that problem with one train northbound going 60mph and the same track southbound going 60mph - what is speed on impact.

        i never did know that answer until i was in my 40s - i was always too concerned on how to get off that bloody train and survive!  if i started running toward the rear cars, would i have sufficient time to make it far enough back that the accordion effect wouldn't get me between cars or would i be thrown forward or would the front cars overturn if i couldn't run fast enough... or should i jump - because if i jumped, like the british buses, there was a forward force that would put me toward the cars accordioning TOWARD where i landed - and what would the force on impact be as i landed.....

        well, when i was in my forties, i found out both answers:  two trains collided somewhere in the northeast and both engineers jumped and survived  and the answer is 120.  (was telling this story to someone who looked at me and quietly said "120" - and i said "WHAAA?"  HE said, add the numbers together and you've got the answer.  120.

        duh!  almost 40 years and not ONE single person had ever been able to teach me that!  SO, my theory is that you  make math applicable to real life and if someone is focused on a different aspect of the problem, enlarge what you teach!  (think vectoring, force, etc.)

        i really DO love math... from a distance!

        "An error does not become truth by reason of multiplied propagation, nor does truth become error because nobody sees it." ~Mahatma Gandhi

        by edrie on Mon Apr 19, 2010 at 02:59:57 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  grok? Anyways, I don't know a lick of algebra (1+ / 0-)
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      and I can find out the interest on my credit card purchases by using arithmetic. I won't say algebra isn't important, but not everybody needs to know it.

      "Progress is possible. Don't give up on voting. Don't give up on activism. There are too many needs to be met, too much work to be done." - Barack Obama

      by eaglekid85va on Mon Apr 19, 2010 at 02:51:08 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Rec'd for grok. :) nt (1+ / 0-)
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      :: Not so hopeful now ::

      by Rick Aucoin on Mon Apr 19, 2010 at 10:21:53 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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