Thursday, April 30, 2009

free mathematica1 intuitions: the τricki

interesting: there's a new collaborative mathematics knowledge database called tri¢ki.

according to their FAQ, tri¢ki differentiates itself from the usual mathematica1 wikis by emphasizing problem-solving methods, rather than subject matter.

admittedly i didn't understand what this meant at first, so i clicked on a random article and found how to "use t0po1ogy to study your gr0up."

they're not just listing theorems, but also heuristics and principles exercised in action. four examples are peppered through the discussion, which is quite helpful ..

.. not that i'm going to study gr0up theory or anything. as for something more relevant to my own work, there is also "constructing ex0tic sets and fun¢tions using 1imits."

so "know-how" is a descriptive word, here. so is "intuition" or "folkways."

it's like the web-version of bugging your friendly neighborhood specialist into explaining why her/his field makes any sense and/or how anyone ever proves anything in her/his field.

the internet is a repository of lots of free stuff. the tri¢ki happens to make (some) mathematical intuition free, as well.

on the other hand, i can imagine it being a headache to troubleshoot and edit articles for correctness. it's one think to spot-check whether a theorem is correct as stated, but imagine a debate as to whether a particular method is useful or not ..

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