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Tarquin/Trig Rant

It's funny that no-one ever says "I want to code UnrealScript, but I don't know how to read yet".

So why do people want to work with geometry in UnrealScript and in UnrealEd before they understand basic trigonometry?

It's quite possible to work with UnrealScript and not get involved with vectors and trig.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that it bugs me when people want to understand vectors, rotators, and angles, but still say things like "it's got something to do with that horrible trig stuff I didn't pay any attention to at school, right?".

Well, it is that trig stuff. Go away and learn it. Pay more attention in maths lessons, or get books on it. It's not rocket science (well, okay, it is used for rocket science).

Okay, just to be nice: Wikipedia logo Trigonometry

Mychaeel: Unfortunately, "I don't know how to read yet" apparently does apply to a couple of programming newbies as well. Those are the people that program by trial-and-error (copy-paste, maybe randomly replace a couple of symbols, then try to recompile), get an error message and post something along the lines of "I get the error message 'type mismatch in parameter 1', what does it mean?" and never bother to read the error message, let alone any documentation that could tell them how to fix it. Thread logo 126654 is a sad example of this. (Apart from the fact that the thread's initiator has, by now, posted five different threads on the same subject in the Coding forum, and has ignored my request to stick to one thread with a single subject and use [code]...[/code] for readability.)

Dante: Yeap, I'm Bytekeeper in this thread ;) The problem with Uscript is, that most people think it's very easy, because it's a script-language. So they start out reading a tutorial instead of reading the language reference. If you understand the language, and you got the class-tree, he's problem is very easy. But as he has no idea of what he's doing, he assumes imho to have a pre-basic scriptlanguage with hardcoded spawn() and no objects or so ( just guessing myself here too ;) ) I mean trial-and-error is an approach we all needed ( Not c&p but you always learn from errors ;) ) But you're right, copy&paste behaviour with exchanging one or two lines by copy&paste from another script :rolleyes: is something those people have in common. And what really annoys me that they aware of that we don't need to help them, do they think it's our job or what ? I guess after UT2k3 comes out, I need to c&p "RTFM" very often.

Mychaeel: Yes, you're right about trial-and-error, of course. I actually prefer it a lot if people just try something out before they ask (same applies to myself). What I actually mean is this particular sort of trial-and-error where the guesses are random ones, not more or less educated ones. – By the way, I personally found posting Unreal Wiki links a pretty good substitute for RTFM. It's more helpful and gets the basic idea of RTFM across just as well. :-D

Dante: You're right, of course :) But I think even with a pointer to Unreal Wiki, they will continue. It's the lazyness of reading manuals. They don't even recognize that they would be faster than waiting for a reply on the forum...

capt. k.: It's not possible that a guy who acts like a 14 year old, has a command of written English like a 14 year old, and doesn't know anything more than a 14 year old could possibly *be* 14 years old, is it?

Mychaeel: Your point being?

Tarquin: I learnt trig at school starting at 13. I have nothing against young er coders. If you want to do stuff that hasn't yet been taught at school, start with books, or better still, convince your school to bump you up a year. :D

capt. k.: My point being that people who say they don't know trig are probably saying that because they don't know trig. I'm not sure what it's like out in everyone else's part of the world, but up my way trig isn't touched till around 10th grade, and vectors aren't covered in anything short of college-level courses. Maybe Tarquin's just gifted, I dunno. :)

Not trying to be contentious here – and I don't disagree, people should learn to RTFM – but I don't think things like ignorance are usually anyone's fault.

Tarquin: I will afree that my rant is ill-thought-out and badly-formed. It's not a patch on Mych's rants which are sensible and clearly-laid out. What I'm saying is:

  • don't know trig and don't want to do trig? fine.
  • don't know trig but want to do things that require it, and therefore want to learn it? fine.
  • don't know trig but want to do things that require it, but still don't want to learn it? :rolleyes:

Mychaeel: Even as a 14-year-old, I knew (or at least I think I knew) that random guesses are the most inefficient way to get something done, and that the key to understanding other people is listening to them. (I think around that age I started to learn assembler by reading a book about it.) The guy in this thread I linked to seems just not to be reading what other people write (or what the compiler tells him), and doesn't seem to be willing to follow people's pointers for further reading. I see a distinct difference between ignorance and lack of knowledge.

capt. k.: Nah. Ignorance is ignorance. :) The distinction is what one choses to do about it.

Mychaeel: Maybe it's my German background. Unkenntnis (lack of knowledge) states a mere fact, Ignoranz (ignorance, I'd translate) implies a degree of bad will. In any case, "what one choses to do about it" is exactly the difference I'm seeing between the two.

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