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[SOLVED] Useless post

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dwsmith

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Feb 1, 2012
1,673
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MarkFL

Administrator
Staff member
Feb 24, 2012
13,775
Jester did not know that you already knew what the end result would be, as you did not divulge that until after his posts. Do you honestly think he was just trying to irritate you?

I have certainly found it helpful at times, if knowing the result of an integration, to differentiate and then work backwards to see what a possible method of integration would be. When I read his suggestion, it truly seemed to me that he was offering a helpful suggestion.
 

dwsmith

Well-known member
Feb 1, 2012
1,673
Jester did not know that you already knew what the end result would be, as you did not divulge that until after his posts. Do you honestly think he was just trying to irritate you?

I have certainly found it helpful at times, if knowing the result of an integration, to differentiate and then work backwards to see what a possible method of integration would be. When I read his suggestion, it truly seemed to me that he was offering a helpful suggestion.
Anyone can go on wolfram online or Mathematica which I have and tell it to integrate to view the answer or I can simply look in the book that posed the question to see the answer. So those post were a waste. He should offer something useful not useless.
 

MarkFL

Administrator
Staff member
Feb 24, 2012
13,775
I would suggest that you should have stated up front that you know the result, and give that result, and ask how this result can be derived. It is a good idea to give all the information you have, and this will most likely avoid posts that you perceive as being a waste of time.

It is more difficult to give the help you are looking for when we don't know what you already know.
 

dwsmith

Well-known member
Feb 1, 2012
1,673
I would suggest that you should have stated up front that you know the result, and give that result, and ask how this result can be derived. It is a good idea to give all the information you have, and this will most likely avoid posts that you perceive as being a waste of time.

It is more difficult to give the help you are looking for when we don't know what you already know.
When I ask how to integrate this, I suppose I am looking for how to integrate something. The answer is irrelevant.
 

MarkFL

Administrator
Staff member
Feb 24, 2012
13,775
Would you not agree that knowing the end result can provide you a means of finding a route for derivation, or at least provide some insight?
 

dwsmith

Well-known member
Feb 1, 2012
1,673
Would you not agree that knowing the end result can provide you a means of finding a route for derivation, or at least provide some insight?
Before tables and computers, people had to find the answer without knowing it. Kepler did the problem be inscribing a circle over the ellipse since Calculus wasn't invented yet. I know what the answer. I can tell you doesn't provide divine knowledge. I want at the problem.

Maybe post should be answered with if you Google enough, you wont need to ask.
 

MarkFL

Administrator
Staff member
Feb 24, 2012
13,775
It is reasonable for you to ask, "How can I integrate this as if I have no knowledge of the end result?"

However, don't you think accusing someone offering you a suggestion, which you happen to not find helpful in this case, of deliberately trying to irritate you is unreasonable?

I am trying to get you to see that no one was deliberately trying to irritate you. If you don't find a suggestion helpful, then you are free not to use it. If you find that someone seems to be deliberately giving you useless suggestions, then report the post(s) and the staff will certainly and promptly handle the issue. However, I don't feel this is the case here.
 

Bacterius

Well-known member
MHB Math Helper
Jan 26, 2012
644
[JUSTIFY]I found Jester's posts useful. Sometimes experimenting with a known result can bring intuition into evaluating an otherwise impenetrable integral. Restricting yourself to one approach is equivalent to crippling yourself (mathematically speaking).

Your argument basically boils down to "progress is irrelevant, previous results are irrelevant, everything must be derived from first principles all the time, every time". That's not how mathematics work. If an approach helps you, why not use it? Does it feel less like mathematics if you assume you know the result beforehand and then formally prove it? Do you think mathematicians like Gauss just went from point A to point B blindly? No, I'm pretty sure they had some idea of what the solution looked like (this is called intuition) and did their fair share of backtracking from a guess at the solution to help them prove theorems. Does that make their mathematics "impure"? That's up to you, but the result is clear - the theorem is proved, the integral is evaluated.

In any case, if you wanted one specific type of help, then you should probably mention this in your original post. Without further information, the default assumption is that you are looking for insight. You cannot expect people to read your thoughts and then jump down their throats for providing a valid approach to solving the problem (and, yes, it is valid).[/JUSTIFY]
 
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dwsmith

Well-known member
Feb 1, 2012
1,673
[JUSTIFY]I found Jester's posts useful. Sometimes experimenting with a known result can bring intuition into evaluating an otherwise impenetrable integral. Restricting yourself to one approach is equivalent to crippling yourself (mathematically speaking).

Your argument basically boils down to "progress is irrelevant, previous results are irrelevant, everything must be derived from first principles all the time, every time". That's not how mathematics work. If an approach helps you, why not use it? Does it feel less like mathematics if you assume you know the result beforehand and then formally prove it? Do you think mathematicians like Gauss just went from point A to point B blindly? No, I'm pretty sure they had some idea of what the solution looked like (this is called intuition) and did their fair share of backtracking from a guess at the solution to help them prove theorems. Does that make their mathematics "impure"? That's up to you, but the result is clear - the theorem is proved, the integral is evaluated.

In any case, if you wanted one specific type of help, then you should probably mention this in your original post. Without further information, the default assumption is that you are looking for insight. You cannot expect people to read your thoughts and then jump down their throats for providing a valid approach to solving the problem (and, yes, it is valid).[/JUSTIFY]
Their approach is as valid as saying go Google it. It brought nothing to table.
 

Bacterius

Well-known member
MHB Math Helper
Jan 26, 2012
644
Their approach is as valid as saying go Google it. It brought nothing to table.
You're not understanding him properly. What Jester meant was not "go look it up, just use WolframAlpha or whatever". It was "did you consider that by looking at the result, you may have a better idea of how to approach the problem?".

That, in my opinion, is a powerful tool, and Jester brought a new, different problem solving method to the table. The fact that you found it unhelpful does not justify calling it "useless", "worthless", "a waste of time", "annoying", and, on top of that, attacking Jester personally, especially considering you seem to be missing the whole point of his contribution.

Now if you don't consider this problem solving approach valid, that is up to you, but does it justify those harsh words? What's next? A "vote down" button? A "ban this user from posting in my thread" button? As it is now, you are attacking a post and a member for not having the same opinion as you. How is that fair?
 

Jameson

Administrator
Staff member
Jan 26, 2012
4,043
Ok, this thread has run its course. I think everyone has expressed themselves enough for all of us to have a general idea of each other's opinion.

No, we don't allow useless posts and if you ever feel that a post is useless or out of line then I invite you to report it and/or bring it up with a staff member. The place to discuss these things though is not in the public forums, the reason why being demonstrated clearly in this thread.
 
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