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**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 86,676

Hi;

You know what I hate? Books on math that only answer odd numbered exercises. Now what is that? Everybody knows all the really good problems are the even numbered ones. Authors, please answer the odd numbered, the even numbered, the prime numbered, the letter numbered, Catalan numbers numbered etc. Oh wait, the Roman numeral numbered too!

Here is a book, the problem I want is #25, so I am in luck. Guess what, he skipped over that one. Wait a minute, I have the revised edition. Surely the new edition will handle that problem. Nope, he changed it from #25 to #26, just so he could skip it. I had to do it myself, now is that right?

So where do we go from here? Leave out the even numbered pages?

**In mathematics, you don't understand things. You just get used to them.Of course that result can be rigorously obtained, but who cares?Combinatorics is Algebra and Algebra is Combinatorics.**

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**gAr****Member**- Registered: 2011-01-09
- Posts: 3,479

Hi bobbym,

I agree.

And they release a separate instructor's manual.

If students can know from their instructors, why not release it for everybody? And where should the other enthusiasts go?

"Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense" - Buddha?

"Data! Data! Data!" he cried impatiently. "I can't make bricks without clay."

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**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 86,676

Hi gAr;

And where should the other enthusiasts go?

I think the other enthusiasts are already being told where they should go. It is a warm, sulfurous place.

**In mathematics, you don't understand things. You just get used to them.Of course that result can be rigorously obtained, but who cares?Combinatorics is Algebra and Algebra is Combinatorics.**

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**alexa.pete9****Member**- Registered: 2011-04-18
- Posts: 11

Even and odd both are the back bone of mathmatics because due to the distribution of numbers in even and odd in mathmatics then the calculations becomes more easy and simple. Many difficult puzzles in maths are automatically resolved.

*Last edited by alexa.pete9 (2011-04-21 18:02:47)*

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**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 86,676

Hi;

Yes, that is very true but can you explain what your explantion has to do with the topic?

If you would have read that poor bedraggled persons problem in post #1 you would know that he is talking about odd and even numbered exercises in math books, not about the integers.

**In mathematics, you don't understand things. You just get used to them.Of course that result can be rigorously obtained, but who cares?Combinatorics is Algebra and Algebra is Combinatorics.**

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**John E. Franklin****Member**- Registered: 2005-08-29
- Posts: 3,562

Yes, it sure would help with the learning process to have them all worked out.

Then the teacher could make up their own problems as homework instead of out of the book.

**igloo** **myrtilles** **fourmis**

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**survival****Member**- Registered: 2011-04-03
- Posts: 655

bobbym wrote:

Hi;

You know what I hate? Books on math that only answer odd numbered exercises. Now what is that? Everybody knows all the really good problems are the even numbered ones. Authors, please answer the odd numbered, the even numbered, the prime numbered, the letter numbered, Catalan numbers numbered etc. Oh wait, the Roman numeral numbered too!

Here is a book, the problem I want is #25, so I am in luck. Guess what, he skipped over that one. Wait a minute, I have the revised edition. Surely the new edition will handle that problem. Nope, he changed it from #25 to #26, just so he could skip it. I had to do it myself, now is that right?

So where do we go from here? Leave out the even numbered pages?

I noticed that. The answers are in the back of the book, but only to odd numbered questions. Unless--it is an end of chapter quiz. Then you are in luck.

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**MathsIsFun****Administrator**- Registered: 2005-01-21
- Posts: 7,535

All Mathopolis questions have answers. Is that odd?

"The physicists defer only to mathematicians, and the mathematicians defer only to God ..." - Leon M. Lederman

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**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 86,676

It certainly is. I just noticed that.

Had a teacher tell me that he does not make mistakes when he answers questions in the back of his monographs. He does that on purpose he says, just to see if you are observant. Haw haw hawwww haw haw!

Of course that result can be rigorously obtained, but who cares?

Combinatorics is Algebra and Algebra is Combinatorics.

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**bob bundy****Moderator**- Registered: 2010-06-20
- Posts: 6,393

hi bobbym and all,

I understand how annoying it can be. I like to know if I have got the same answer as the author. I have one maths text book that has lots of my alterations at the back to display the 'correct answer' and a few instances where I've had to change an answer back with humble apologies!

MIF posters who ask for help here are mostly responsible students who genuinely want help with their understanding. A frequent post takes the form " I know what answer I should be getting. Can someone help me to understand it?"

But, sadly, I have to report, not all students are so motivated. The following situation, that really happened (!), will illustrate my point. The questions were from the chapter on symmetry. The answers were at the back of the book. The student I will call Wayne although that is not his real name!

THE QUESTIONS

(1) Look at diagram (1). How many lines of symmetry has it got.

(2) Look at diagram (2). What is the order of rotational symmetry of this shape?

(3) Draw a shape that has four lines of symmetry.

WAYNE'S ANSWERS IN HIS EXERCISE BOOK.

(1) 2 (2) 3

(3) Show your answer to your teacher.

Authors of maths text books are trying to compromise between the extremes of (i) Responsible student who uses the answers to guide his / her understanding; and (ii) student who will just copy an answer regardless of understanding!

In a liberal, democratic society you have to be prepared to accept compromises in order to allow that not everyone wants the same as you.

Sorry, but I'm with the odd answers guy.

Bob

*Last edited by bob bundy (2011-05-15 21:18:20)*

You cannot teach a man anything; you can only help him find it within himself..........Galileo Galilei

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**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 86,676

Hi Bob and all;

Actually the original post was not serious commentary but I will act like it is. That will not be easy. I will defend my earlier comments with the demeanor of a big know it all. Here is what I will try:

Not everyone that reads a book is a student. Teachers and authors also are not the same people. An instructor should not use problems from a book and he should know when the student has just copied an answer.

Let us take a look at the students you are describing. Not answering even numbered problems does not stop them. He/she can go to any number of forums and have their questions answered. Worse, there are pay sites that will answer any homework question for 2 bucks american. Perhaps homework is obsolete. The good students do their own and the others do not. Of course a teacher should be able to know when a student has done his own work. They may not be able to act on those suspicions.

I was just asked by someone whether or not his teacher would be able to see that the work was not his own. He was worrying about being caught but not worried enough to do his own. He got very good answers from people in here and felt his teacher would know that he just copied. Over my time here I feel that anyone who is utilizing the services of the Jane's, mathsy's, gAr's, Bob Bundy's, and many others is going to hand in high quality work despite the fact that Tucker penalized me on problem #26.

All this means is that if I ever run into Tucker he is a dead man.

Of course that result can be rigorously obtained, but who cares?

Combinatorics is Algebra and Algebra is Combinatorics.

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**bob bundy****Moderator**- Registered: 2010-06-20
- Posts: 6,393

hi bobbym,

I thought you were joking too; after all I know, that you know, that when you want an answer confirmed you don't need to check the book; just post it here and we'll happily tear your solution to pieces (or not as the case maybe).

An instructor should not use problems from a book

I'm guilty of this so I'll defend it.

As a teacher I have to

prepare lessons

teach the lesson

set the work ***

set the homework ***

mark the work

write reports

do paperwork

meet the parents

act like a policeman

act like a social worker

act like a psychiatrist

or yes, and try to help students who are stuck with their learning!

I think the last is my most important role. So the less time I have to spend on the rest, especially ***, the better.

The exam courses I taught had some really good books, written by a great maths teacher, who also happened to be the chief examiner for the maths exam we were studying. Under those circumstances wouldn't you use the questions from those books?

The first publication had all the answers; but then, in response to demand from teachers and students, he wrote a set of question-only books with no explanations and no answers so that students had plenty to practise from.

An answer book was sold separately for anyone who wanted / needed it. (Available from all good bookshops)

Bob

wrt your comments about Tucker. Does that mean it is not safe to tell you when you are wrong? If so, I was only joking when I said about tearing your work to pieces.

*Last edited by bob bundy (2011-05-16 01:11:52)*

You cannot teach a man anything; you can only help him find it within himself..........Galileo Galilei

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**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 86,676

Hi Bob;

just post it here and we'll happily tear your solution to pieces

Oh yea! Sorry, I know that is the comeback of a nine year old but I have nothing better. Okay, you got me.

prepare lessons

teach the lesson

set the work ***

set the homework ***

mark the work

write reports

do paperwork

meet the parents

act like a policeman

act like a social worker

act like a psychiatrist

Agreed. It is the hardest job. I do not know what your beliefs are but all of them assure us you will be paid back. It is like money in the bank.

An answer book was sold separately for anyone who wanted / needed it.

Agreed. There are solution manuals.

wrt your comments about Tucker. Does that mean it is not safe to tell you when you are wrong?

Concerning Tucker, almost everything I know comes from him. If I had his knowledge about combinatorics I would throw mine away. Like all people being told I am wrong is a hard nut to swallow but I found that at least acting graciously is half the battle. I never did figure which was easier, to be a good winner, or a good loser. This poem better known in your country says it all.

If you can keep your head when all about you

Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;

If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,

But make allowance for their doubting too:

If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,

Or being lied about, dont deal in lies,

Or being hated, dont give way to hating,

And yet dont look too good, nor talk too wise;If you can dream and not make dreams your master;

If you can think and not make thoughts your aim,

If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster

And treat those two imposters just the same;

If you can bear to hear the truth youve spoken

Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,

Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,

And stoop and build em up with worn-out tools;If you can make one heap of all your winnings

And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,

And lose, and start again at your beginnings

And never breathe a word about your loss:

If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew

To serve your turn long after they are gone,

And so hold on when there is nothing in you

Except the Will which says to them: Hold on!If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,

Or walk with King nor lose the common touch;

If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,

If all men count with you, but none too much:

If you can fill the unforgiving minute

With sixty seconds worth of distance run,

Yours is the Earth and everything thats in it,

And which is more youll be a Man, my son!

Of course that result can be rigorously obtained, but who cares?

Combinatorics is Algebra and Algebra is Combinatorics.

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**bob bundy****Moderator**- Registered: 2010-06-20
- Posts: 6,393

I'm very impressed; religion, philosophy and poetry in a single post. Where else could one get such enlightenment?

"May the force be with you."

Bob

*Last edited by bob bundy (2011-05-16 05:23:09)*

You cannot teach a man anything; you can only help him find it within himself..........Galileo Galilei

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