# Thread: What kind of math were you better at?

1. Originally Posted by raz1337
I've never seen that stuff before....college algebra?
In the last post, he mentioned derivatives, which is calculus. He's doing it the hard way.

The "exponential function" is e = 2.72.... , an unending number like pi. You've probably seen e before. Lots of science depends on raising e to a power. It's just something you see again and again. That's how I got familiar with it.

2. Henri Poincare noted a difference between those who fared better in algebra and those who did well in geometry. He said that those in geometry used something of a guess-and-check method with intuition, narrowing down the possibilities toward a direct answer. To the contrary, those who do well in algebra seek to prove something straight forward and directly, getting to the point immediately and in a linear fashion.

I did better in algebra in high school, though I'm not absolutely sure which one would be my best. Probably algebra.

I would also posit that those studies based on algebra are more abstract while the geometrical depend on more concrete faculties.

3. Originally Posted by raz1337
I've never seen that stuff before....college algebra?
The derivative is taught in any introductory calculus course. Calculus is sometimes taught in grade 12. Other times people wait until college to take it. Exponential functions y=(constant)^x are taught in grade 12 algebra. While you can solve the problem without calculus just by recognizing that when the constant is less than 1 it is decreasing and greater than 1 it is increasing, it is less rigorous and involves memorization of specific cases of specific functions (easy to forget after the exam is over).

4. Originally Posted by Cimarron
In the last post, he mentioned derivatives, which is calculus. He's doing it the hard way.

The "exponential function" is e = 2.72.... , an unending number like pi. You've probably seen e before. Lots of science depends on raising e to a power. It's just something you see again and again. That's how I got familiar with it.
Never seen e before. All I've done is GED, then two math classes to make myself "qualified" to take a college algebra course.

5. I had a really cool professor freshman year who explained how e was connected to the process of "taking something to a power", and when you think about it, that's why they call it an exponential function. At least, that's what I got from it.

6. e=(1+1/n)^n as n goes to infinity.
It's an irrational number, just like pi.
If you want to see what it looks like to more decimal places check this out.

e is commonly used in this (y=e^x) form because it gains a lot of valuable properties.
The most important one is that it's easy to calculate its derivative.

7. Woo, 97 on my final exam.

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