TITLE: A Few Old Passages AUTHOR: Eugene Wallingford DATE: March 01, 2014 11:35 AM DESC: ----- BODY: I was looking over a couple of files of old notes and found several quotes that I still like, usually from articles I enjoyed as well. They haven't found their way into a blog entry yet, but they deserve to see the light of day. Evidence, Please! From a short note on the tendency even among scientists to believe unsubstantiated claims, both in and out of the professional context:
It's hard work, but I suspect the real challenge will lie in persuading working programmers to say "evidence, please" more often.
More programmers and computer scientists are trying to collect and understand data these days, but I'm not sure we've made much headway in getting programmers to ask for evidence. Sometimes, Code Before Math From a discussion of The Expectation Maximization Algorithm:
The code is a lot simpler to understand than the math, I think.
I often understand the language of code more quickly than the language of math. Reading, or even writing, a program sometimes helps me understand a new idea better than reading the math. Theory is, however, great for helping me to pin down what I have learned more formally. Grin, Wave, Nod From Iteration Inside and Out, a review of the many ways we loop over stuff in programs:
Right now, the Rubyists are grinning, the Smalltalkers are furiously waving their hands in the air to get the teacher's attention, and the Lispers are just nodding smugly in the back row (all as usual).
As a Big Fan of all three languages, I am occasionally conflicted. Grin? Wave? Nod? Look like the court jester by doing all three simultaneously? -----