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ratface mcdougal
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Hi gang, Been lurking a here for a while. It seems like at least a few people suffer from the same thing I have. I am a scientist (geneticist, the physicists might quibble) who struggled with math for most of primary and secondary education. Turns out that if you are pretty smart, mild dyslexia that causes you t flip "noun verb" to "verb noun" allows you to pretty much grok the meaning. But 13+7 and 31+7 are completely different. My dyslexia (dysnumeria?) seems to be worse with numbers; I flip address numbers, phone numbers all the time; notice flipping words and letters much less. This could be observation bias though; I notice the things that affect the outcome, which is more severe with numbers that with letters/words. I didn't do well at math until geometry (proofs yay!) and then calculus in college. (No calculations, the computer did it). Understanding the a) mathematics of quantum mechanics and understanding the b) implications of quantum mechanics are, at least for me, the same beast. I can't really understand something unless I can understand the math behind it, and I can't understand the mathematics behind quantum mechanics. I had to take physical chemistry for my biochem degree, and calculating the hamiltonian for hydrogen atom melted my brain. That said, I think there certainly are people who can grok b) but not a). Not me, but other people. As an almost complete aside, the three best non-scientist biologist books I have read are: Eighth Day of Creation, Horace Judson Dinosaur Heresies, Robert Bakker Endless Forms Most Beautiful, Sean Carroll
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Posted Dec 1, 2009 at ratface mcdougal's blog
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Dec 1, 2009