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Re: (OT) Re: OpenGL scenegraph

On Tue, 7 Sep 1999, Erik wrote:

>math is a tool. You need to know which formula to use and how to use it, what
>the numbers mean, and all that math-hacker stuff you don't want to know...
>otherwise you're trying to use a hammer to put in a screw, or use a screwdriver
>to plane a board... I don't think math formulas should be a magic black box in
>any circumstance. 

Why not? We have toolkits that are black boxes. libc is a black box. I
don't need the ultimate correctness or performance, as long as it works.
If somebody is unhappy with some part of my stuff they can submit patches.

>Proper use and understanding of the right formulas can give
>very effecient accurate answers, bad application or the wrong formula can give
>off answers and probably a lot slower... Graphics, physics, stuff like that all
>rely heavily on a sound understanding of some relatively advanced princeples.
>Some of the neatest stuff requires an intimite understanding of very advanced
>concepts (do quats counts as very advanced? cuz they give me wood). Not
>learning math and not wanting to learn math is a very bad move, imho,
>especially for a video game/gfx coder :) 

This could evolve into a flamewar about math, but that would be quite
silly. My experiences with math are bad because I've always had bad
teachers that have failed to make it interesting. The only math course in
university that I've found interesting is a course on matrices, but I
didn't go to the lectures on that course, instead I did it all by myself.
So I have a basic understanding of matrices.

I'm not a gamecoder, nor do I want to be one. I like to make tools that
can be used by gamecoders. I'd like to know everything about math, but
that's not possible, so instead I settle for as much math as I need to
make my simple and stupid toolkits. It's very hard to find the
bits'n'pieces of information that are relevant for me from the
theorethical books on math that I've seen. As I don't know if I'm smart
enough to understand stuff in the Foley and van Dam -book (don't remember
the name right now), I don't want to buy it.

Anyway, let's not start a flamewar about math here. 

 Jan 'Chakie' Ekholm |    CS at Åbo Akademi University, Turku, Finland
    Linux Inside     | I'm the blue screen of death, no-one hears you scream