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Greenhorn
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Hi guys. I'm new and have just registered for a Java programming course. Is it wise to learn coding without maths? I never finished mathematics at school. What new books should I learn to be a better programmer? I really need to change my career.... Any links or advise is welcome....
 
Marshal
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Hi,

A warm welcome to Ranch

Yes, it is possible, it is never too late to learn something new. You could start by reading Oracle Tutorials (<- link to click on).
Also, read the posts in Beginning Java forum as much as you can and as often as you can - it will help you to know about the existing topics and quite often repeating confusions and pitfalls.

And please change your name to a real one, we like use real names on Ranch Thank you.
 
Sheriff
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Welcome to the Ranch, and welcome to the wonderful world of coding!

You don't need to be well versed in mathematics to do lots of coding.

There are all sorts of books to help a person learn Java. Do you want to start a book too while you're in your class? If so, Head First Java is a good starting place.
 
Ranch Hand
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Two Mellow wrote:Hi guys. I'm new and have just registered for a Java programming course. Is it wise to learn coding without maths? I never finished mathematics at school. What new books should I learn to be a better programmer? I really need to change my career.... Any links or advise is welcome....



You don't need math at all unless you're programming something mathematical, like you wouldn't need to know the insurance biz unless you were writing insurance programs.

The key skill is being able to take a real problem and convert it to an abstract problem in code. An easy example of what that means would be a coin flipping program. You can't write code using a physical coin, so you create an analogy for a flipping coin in code and do what you have to do to simulate the essentials of a flipping coin. The the end result you get is the same as if you had been using a physical coin. Not having to deal with physical things can be a big advantage. Our motto is "It's code -- we can do anything."
 
Marshal
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Even though I have a pretty heavy mathematical background (or should have said had, as I forget most of it) I've rarely used much beyond linear algebra in programming over a career spanning 37 years.

Sure, if you're going to be programming filters for Photoshop, you're going to need advanced matrix math. If you are going to be modeling circuit theory or particle physics, you'll need the appropriate mathematics.

But for most programming, unless the domains requires advanced math theory, basic math will likely suffice. You can learn anything else needed as needed.
 
Greenhorn
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Aah, by reading this topic I gained much confidence for programming.
Some people told me its impossible to code if you are not good enough in math.
And here I am learning good code without facing any difficulties.
Haters gonna hate....
Thanks and
 
lowercase baba
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I have a different take. ALL programming is 100% math. But bear with me.

Math isn't simply cranking out calculations. Math is about analyzing, evaluating, thinking, and breaking large problems down into smaller ones. Which is EXACTLY what programming is. The guy who proved Fermet's last theorem didn't do it by looking at one large monolithic task. He said "well, If I can do A, B, and C, that will prove it". Then he worked on doing A by breaking it down into sub-components.

Do you need to have the fifty or so basic trig identities memorized in order to program? No.
Do you need to be able to do differential integration? No.

But do you need critical thinking skills and the ability to break a large task down into smaller tasks? Yes. Absolutely. And that IS math.
 
Rancher
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There are a few things you need to be aware of: underrun is one, overrun is another, and trying to divide by 0, along with the order of precedence when you read a math formula (so you know how to implement the right one). If you have those 4 things down, then you will have more of the Math you need other than the ability to add, subtract, multiply, and divide.
 
Marshal
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Les Morgan, welcome to the Ranch

There are four arithmetic problems you need to worry about:-
  • 1: Integer overflow, as in this thread earlier today.
  • 2: Floating‑point overflow, which will give ∞ as a result.
  • 3: Floating‑point underflow, which will give you 0.0 as a result.
  • 4: Floating‑point imprecision, which can produce all sorts of nasty errors from a tiny difference from the expected result.
  • Division by 0 varies depending on whether you are using BigDecimal, integers or floating‑point numbers.

    When I first started programming, it was all about complicated arithmetic, but now I am surprised by how little arithmetic you need to program.

    I find I have a difference of opinion about whether programming is a branch of mathematics or of engineering. I usually think of it an engineering where one is trying to make something. But other people think all programming is maths.
     
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