quoth the Daniel Waite:
> Hi all. First off, be gentle. I imagine what I'm about to present is
> pretty amateur, but I've been a programmer for about 6 years and up
> until now have gotten away with knowing little about math (real math --
> the kind with few numbers and lots of letters and symbols).
>
> But as my interest grows beyond the world of web-based applications, I
> find my lack of math is hurting me -- I know a given problem can be
> solved with math, but I can't do it with math because I don't know it.
> So what I DO do is tell it like a story with objects (which I will
> present below). In fact, most of my non-trivial algos read like stories.
> They're longer than an equivalent solution in math would be, but I
> understand it.
>
> I've observed that most "real" algorithms are heavy with the stuff, and
> my eyes glaze over when I see something as simple as solutions to the
> Tower of Hanoi.

Very interesting. I find myself in exactly the same boat. I fell into my love 
of computers/programming late in life (ie: after college), and I also have a 
very weak background in math. I have found it had held me back a great deal. 
Everytime I try to improve my math skills, I find myself having to backtrack 
more and more because I am coming across concepts I just don't understand, 
until I find myself all the way back at the high school level<shudder>.

I find myself often writing code by "mashing it around" until I get the output 
I am looking for, with no real understanding or concept of a decent 
algorithm.

You can see this manifested in all my submissions to the Ruby Quiz, which 
always run waaaaaaaay slower than everyone else's ;)

I am trying though, I have some '...for dummies' books on algebra and 
calculus, and I am working through SICP and the 6.001 tutor at MIT Open 
Courseware, so perhaps there may be hope for me someday...

keep on keepin' on,
-d
-- 
darren kirby :: Part of the problem since 1976 :: http://badcomputer.org
"...the number of UNIX installations has grown to 10, with more expected..."
- Dennis Ritchie and Ken Thompson, June 1972