Programming questions that are significantly affected or best defined by the underlying mathematics of the problem.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

9
votes
5answers
3k views

When comparing floats, what do you call the threshold of difference?

I'm comparing floats in Java right now and the simplest formula is: Math.abs(a - b) < THRESHOLD When naming your variable for the threshold of difference, should you name it delta or epsilon? ...
16
votes
4answers
1k views

Why is mod (%) a fundamental mathematical operator in many programming languages?

Is there a reason, historical or otherwise, why the modulus operator is part of a small set of standard operators in what seems like many languages? (+, -, *, / and %, for Java and C, with ** in Ruby ...
10
votes
6answers
5k views

Web Developer and Math [duplicate]

I have just learned HTML/CSS and I practice everything I read to make it more understandable to me and I really enjoy it. My goal is to be a Modern Web Developer both front and back-end, so I won't ...
5
votes
2answers
301 views

Bin sorting problem - Please help categorize

I have a problem I am developing a solution for and currently I solve it with a brute force solution that checks all possibilities. It works for small numbers of bins but I'd like to work with a ...
13
votes
2answers
594 views

Trying to understand the 2N lnN compares for quicksort

I was going through the analysis of quicksort in Sedgewick's Algorithms book. He creates the following recurrence relation for number of compares in quicksort while sorting an array of N distinct ...
0
votes
1answer
882 views

Sum of divisors of numbers of the range ~ 10^6

I was trying to find the sum of divisors of numbers upto 106. The test cases are like of the order of 105. I have done some pre processing like int divisors(int num) { int sum=0; for(int ...
0
votes
3answers
538 views

Using Power of 2 numbers to represent types

Let's say that we have some values, represented by power of 2: TYPE_1 = 1 TYPE_2 = 2 TYPE_3 = 4 TYPE_4 = 8 ... I need to store some of these types in one value. Example: To represent TYPE_1 with ...
2
votes
4answers
3k views

How to get from 1 byte to 2 bytes

We have 1 byte, which is 8 bits, which is 2^8. Now 2 bytes should be 2 * 1 byte, which is 2 * 2^8 = 2^9, but actually 2 bytes is 2^16. What am I missing here? It seems like 2 bytes isn't 2 * 1 byte, ...
0
votes
1answer
653 views

Python — Time complexity of built-in functions versus manually-built functions in finite fields

Generally, I'm wondering about the advantages versus disadvantages of using the built-in arithmetic functions versus rolling your own in Python. Specifically, I'm taking in GF(2) finite field ...
19
votes
4answers
2k views

Documenting mathematical logic in code

Sometimes, although not often, I have to include math logic in my code. The concepts used are mostly very simple, but the resulting code is not - a lot of variables with unclear purpose, and some ...
4
votes
2answers
3k views

Array Multiplication and Division

I came across a question that (eventually) landed me wondering about array arithmetic. I'm thinking specifically in Ruby, but I think the concepts are language independent. So, addition and ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Does learning to play an instrument improve programming ability? [closed]

I've seen plenty of questions asking if listening to music boosts productivity, etc. but I haven't been able to find one about performing music. Learning to play the piano has been on my to-do list ...
3
votes
1answer
267 views

Finding maximum number of congruent numbers

Let's say we have a multiset (set with possible duplicates) of integers. We would like to find the size of the largest subset of the multiset such that all numbers in the subset are congruent to each ...
1
vote
0answers
277 views

Optimization algorithm, how to develop this problem

I have a situation where I would like your input and think over / solve algorithm. The specs There are inventories with a specified amount of capacity. 'X (width) and Y (time)' creates ...
5
votes
1answer
523 views

What is the difference between a combinator and function chaining?

So from what I've read about combinators I can't quite tell how they're different from simply chaining function calls. I know I must be missing something but I'm not figuring out what I'm missing. I ...
1
vote
1answer
309 views

Pairwise testing, not possible to say which combinations is faulty?

Let's say I have 4 (A,B,C,D) parameters with 3 possible values, also 81 unique combinations. With e.g. orthogonal array, I will end up with 9 test cases, each combining 3 pairs. But that means that if ...
2
votes
4answers
109 views

Find how the data has been processed

Well this has been a question I have puzzled about for a long time: Suppose I have a dictionary of input:output like: This {2: 6, 5: 15, 20: 60, 26: 78, ... 982: 2946, 997: 2991} where ...
2
votes
2answers
839 views

Transform math formula into code (line-line intersection)

I'm having hard times transforming a math formula to code. I can solve it on the paper easily, but it's hard for me to bring it into code form. Is it generally possible to bring a math formula ...
3
votes
4answers
2k views

Is there such a thing as truly random? [closed]

I saw a video about random numbers and how the programmer in that video was talking about computers generating pseudo random numbers and that they are not really random. I knew about this. Then he ...
0
votes
3answers
425 views

algorithm to create all possible column vectors of size N containing only ones and zeroes [closed]

I am a mathematics student and am just starting to learn about programming. I am stuck on a particular program I am trying to write for fun. I want to find an algorithm to create all possible column ...
2
votes
2answers
7k views

Closest Point of Approach (CPA) mathematical formula in ship radar

I was recently searching for the mathematical formula to find closest point of approach (CPA) between one ship and another ship. I need to apply the formula in my radar ship program and I can't find ...
4
votes
3answers
293 views

Customer Requirements Contains Equations that Cancel to Nothing

I have a project where the customer requirement specifies a report and contains mathematical equations for the contents of some of the columns on that report. One of the columns on this report is a ...
4
votes
7answers
884 views

Is (1/(1/x)) always a perfect round trip?

Is the following guaranteed to return true for all numerical and non-zero values of x? bool IsRoundTrip(double x) { double y = 1 / (1 / x); return x == y; } What conditions would cause a ...
0
votes
2answers
227 views

Tracking scientific error when working with floating-point numbers

Background I hate the way .Net/IEEE-754 handles equality of floating-point numbers (FPNs) (i.e. double, float). It requires the programmer to be prescient with respect to the yet-to-be-determined ...
8
votes
3answers
11k views

what is a efficient way to find repeating decimal

I am trying to find a efficient algorithm in Java to find the repeating decimal part of two integers a and b where a/b. eg. 5/7 = 0.714258 714258.... I currently only know of the long division ...
2
votes
3answers
386 views

strategies for dealing with machine epsilon

Say you have a situation where you divide and then multiply a float, and you need to guarantee that it survives macheps (ie multiplication output equals division input). What are known strategies for ...
0
votes
1answer
323 views

I'm trying to create a visual representation of something, but I don't know what words to use, so I'll try to describe it

My project team is making a site that will use reddit style voting to track users' opinions on various issues, and use the data to create a "heat map". I say heat map in quotes because I'm not sure ...
3
votes
2answers
146 views

Randomness of wrapped RNG

There are plenty of questions around regarding random number generation, but I couldn't find anything that exactly matched my question. Apologies if I missed one. Most random number generators in ...
0
votes
1answer
549 views

Algorithm to detect a CLICK within Square range

It might be a simple question but I am looking for optimal solution. I will have numbers printed on a screen and I will be aware of coordinates. Numbers/Symbols will have 4 points(Square) to define ...
10
votes
5answers
876 views

Interview puzzle on traveling on a line segment

On a number line of length M, where 0 < M <= 1,000,000,000, you given N (1 < N <= 100,000) integer pairs of points. In each pair, the first point represents where an object is currently ...
2
votes
1answer
118 views

Turning n-dim points into m-dim where m<n and where point-to-point distance deviation is minimized

I want to apply k-means clustering to a (sparse) adjacency graph. For this I need to assign the nodes to a position in an euclidean space. Trivially I can do this by having a space with as many ...
0
votes
1answer
166 views

How to do scalar multiplication and matrix inverse when variables are of size 1000 bits?

I am doing arithmetic operations on really huge numbers. For example, I am given six variables, a_{11}, a_{12}, a_{21}, a_{22}, x_1, and x_2. Although the above are math terms, these six variables ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

Randomly Generate Points in a Spiral Motion using Javascript

So I have a javascript program that currently gets random points, it generates a random x,y,z value around the center point, within the radius r var maxArms = 3; var i = 0; var color = []; ...
-1
votes
1answer
5k views

How to get audio spectrum analysis? [closed]

I need to find or create a tool that analyzes the audio spectrum of a sound file (like a .wav or .mp3). I need to output the "volume" or power of x number of frequency bands and output the data as ...
10
votes
2answers
6k views

Find the new coordinates using a starting point, a distance, and an angle

Okay, say I have a point coordinate. var coordinate = { x: 10, y: 20 }; Now I also have a distance and an angle. var distance = 20; var angle = 72; The problem I am trying to solve is, if I want ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

Date calculation algorithm

I'm working on a project to schedule a machine shop, basically I've got everything covered BUT date calculations, I've got a method called schedule (working on PHP here): public function ...
0
votes
4answers
881 views

Separating merged array of arithmetic and geometric series [closed]

Given an array of positive integers in increasing order. Separate them in two series, an arithmetic sequence and geometric sequence. The given array is such that a solution do exist. The union of ...
2
votes
3answers
3k views

Calculating 3d rotation around random axis

This is actually a solved problem, but I want to understand why my original method didn't work (hoping someone with more knowledge can explain). (Keep in mind, I've not very experienced in 3d ...
27
votes
9answers
16k views

How to check if 4 points form a square?

Assume I have 4 points (they are 2-dimension), which are different from each other, and I want to know whether they form a square. How to do it? (let the process be as simple as possible.)
8
votes
3answers
942 views

how to programtically build a grid of interlocking but random sized squares

I want to create a two dimensional layout of rectangular shapes, a grid made up of random sized cubes. The cubed should fit together and have equal padding or margin (space between). Kind of like a ...
26
votes
4answers
3k views

Can you use Pi as a crude random number generator?

I recently saw this question over at math.SE. It got me thinking. Could Pi be used as a crude random number generator? I mean the results are well known(how long has pi been computed to now?) but, Pi ...
33
votes
15answers
5k views

Why use other number bases when programming

My coworkers and I have been bending our minds to figuring out why anyone would go out of their way to program numbers in a base other than base 10. I suggested that perhaps you could optimize longer ...
6
votes
4answers
446 views

Should Equality be commutative within a Class Hierachy?

It is easy to define the Equals operation in ways that are not commutative. When providing equality against other types, there are obviously situations (in most languages) were equality not being ...
5
votes
1answer
348 views

What's the normal way machine-learning algorithms are integrated into normal programs?

I'm currently taking a machine learning course for fun, and the course heavily focuses on Matlab/Octave to write the code. One thing mentioned in the course is that, while Matlab/Octave are great for ...
0
votes
3answers
132 views

Working with vectors and transformations

I am going to write an graphical 2D application that allows user to create polygons and transform them through transformation such as rotation an so on. I was hoping someone can give pro and cons ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

Algorithm to calculate trajectories from vector field

I have a two-dimensional vector field, i.e., for each point (x, y) I have a vector (u, v), whereas u and v are functions of x and y. This vector field canonically defines a set of trajectories, i.e. ...
2
votes
2answers
310 views

Dealing with units in arithmetic operations (multiplication and division)

I need to design a function to perform the basic arithmetic operations that are addition (+), subtraction (-), multiplication (x), and division (/) between 2 numbers. That function takes 3 arguments: ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

Fractional and Cartesian Coordinates

I have a set of fractional coordinates. I also have a rotation matrix that operates on cartesian coordinates. Does anyone know how I could convert my rotation matrix so I can operate on the ...
4
votes
3answers
2k views

What Discrete Mathematics topics should the average computer science student know?

I know that Discrete Mathematics is a pretty broad topic that's used in a number of fields but I was just wondering what are some of the topics from it that you would expect an average computer ...
1
vote
2answers
639 views

1 to 1 Comparison and Ranking System

I'm looking to create a comparison and ranking system which allows users to view 2 items, click on the one that they feel is the better one and then get presented with 2 more random items and continue ...