Waste less time on Facebook — follow Brilliant.

Programming solutions for math

I wanted to know if finding answers to math problems ( from the algebra, number theory and combinatorics sections ) using programming languages really serves the purpose (I read someone pointing out that Brilliant accepts these solutions and the purpose of this thread is to discuss the same). I know that the 'Data Structures and Algorithms' section has been missing for quite a while now from Brilliant, but using a computer to find solutions for beautiful math problems just doesn't enrich one's domain knowledge*. Posting such solutions does very little help and does not aid in understanding the concepts involved in solving the problem. There are websites like projecteuler.net which require the use of both: math skills and coding skills. But since brilliant does not have problems that necessitate the use of a computer, I suggest that users avoid^ using such techniques or at least, refrain from posting such solutions.

*All points mentioned are my views only and I don't intend to force them on any other user.

^May be a harsh term :P

Note by Bruce Wayne
2 years, 11 months ago

No vote yet
2 votes


Sort by:

Top Newest

Some of the problems are of the "you see the almost-impossible-to-find-trick-you-only-know-if-you've-done-this-before or you won't solve the problem" sort. Nothing is more frustrating than to be confronted with such a problem, while you know a simple algorith could brute-force the solution. So I understand why people use them :) Ton De Moree · 2 years, 11 months ago

Log in to reply

@Ton De Moree It is not the destination, but the journey that matters the most. Bruce Wayne · 2 years, 11 months ago

Log in to reply

I often find the answer through a graphing calculator and then find mathematical solutions. But I do mention if the solution is purely from calculator. Niranjan Khanderia · 1 year, 5 months ago

Log in to reply

One could make the argument that good, hard math problems should be intractable to naive brute force computer programs to begin with, so that at least some mathematical knowledge is required even if a computer is used. I realize this is difficult for algebra problems, since there's domain-specific software for algebra. It's quite easy with combinatorial problems, though. Christopher Johnson · 2 years, 11 months ago

Log in to reply


Problem Loading...

Note Loading...

Set Loading...