Saturday, May 19, 2007

The torture continues.

Before I break into another long post about things, I must first share this with you:

0, 0, 0, 0, 4, 9, 5, 1, 1, 0, 5

Some may see something there, but alas for me I am clueless. I have been sorting my stuff out today and on the back of some paper I found the above 'sequence'. I hadn't written '...' after it on my paper, but I'm guessing it does go on 'forever and forever'. Mr B. in further maths once made us jot that down, and he told us to ponder on it. I had written it on some chemistry work, so maybe I can be forgiven for thinking about Magnesium and the experiment which we had done on metals, upon looking at it! So does anyone have any idea what the next term could possibly be or what the heck them numbers mean? (I might have done sequences and series, but when it comes to things like this I'm pretty dumb!) Do I hazard a guess at what the next number could be? I dare not!

---

Why is it that I can't seem to rid my mind of thoughts about the two exams that I've already taken? It's hard to explain my theory of why I believe that I've got to where I have in life, but the only thing I can say is that one thing was missing whilst I took these exams. One could say that it was a belief of some sort, but others may argue that if you revise then you should pass. I know that revision is important, but in my life 'revision' has always been secondary to this one other thing which I believe contributes to my doing OK in exams at times. This something wasn't present this week and I'm sad to say that this is my own fault, and I'm not sure whether this thing will return. I am ridden with guilt, but I sincerely believe that I had not been lacking in the department of which I speak of, then I would feel slightly more confident now.

You see this things relieves me of stress indirectly, and allows me to focus my energy. I can vouch for the success of this thing, since it was apparent on numerous occasions during the January exams. However on Thursday it wasn't there. I was alone in my exam so to speak. Today whilst sorting my files for linear algebra and sequences and series (I was cleaning my room!) I once again came across the exam paper. Yes it's my fault, but I couldn't help a flick through the paper. The question said one-to-one and I had thought it had said onto. In my paper I'd written about the range, and tried to remember how to do the proof to show it's not onto. It said one-to-one! I knew that if I showed that the kernel doesn't equal zero then I was 'done'. I guess I really do need to get my eyes tested! (Random: The other day in the car, my dad asked me to read a sign (after grilling me about why I haven't made an appointment to get my eyes tested!). I thought obviously it's going to say 'sold' so I said 'sold'! The damn sign said too let, which was pretty embarrassing. I'm waiting for the holidays is my lame excuse.)

I wouldn't really be that concerned about this, but the real reason I am is because in both of these exams something didn't feel right. I apologise for being vague, but why give you more reasons to show how mad I am! Now I sit and think what other silly little thing that I miss out. Did I miss a question by accident? What if they lose one of my booklets for the linear algebra exam- I mean I had three so they might lose one right? What other mistakes like the one I mentioned yesterday did I make? I'm one them weird people, who after an exam, can't get them out of my system. But this time it's worse. Normally I'd ponder over it, then this other factor would have me believing that everything will be ok. I'm lacking in that department now. Some would call this an 'invisible' force, but nevertheless it's very powerful in my opinion.

Sigh. Well I can only hope to improve, and I wish that I am able to get my act straight. I'm not feeling like a particularly 'good bean' at the moment. Not in the normal sense, but it's all my fault. Maybe university is not such a good thing after all, I mean it has been a distraction in one sense, and maybe my obsession with maths has been another reason? A lot of maybes, and I even mentioned this to Milo, but nothings going to change how I feel. I can only hope that next year things will be slightly different in this department, and the positive vibes will return.

This is going to be my last post mentioning the linear algebra and sequences exam, I hope. Am I annoyed with myself? To a small degree maybe, I mean what's done is done, but I have a lot 'gah's' going around in my head! However, disregarding exams, I think I've got to look at the positives about my roundabout in sequence and series (thanks to the example classes), rather than worry about the exam. It's the expectation thing all over again you see! Isn't it ironic, that I'm worried about how I've passed when my first year doesn't contribute anything at all to my degree!

Anyway, I think that's enough complaining and grumbling about the exams. I now have 7ish days to revise for mechanics and ODEs and funnily enough something is telling me that I should have put more effort into this during the year! It's not that I don't find mechanics 'interesting' but I guess from all the modules I took, this has to be with stats at the bottom. Namely, because I can't 'do it'. Has anyone got any books which they could possibly recommend for mechanics? (Although mechanics is definitely above stats!).

Thankfully today has been a day of doing nothing. Well somethings but not revision related things, and it's been good. If you started reading this blog from the beginning, then you may remember that in January I was faced with the same situation that I am in now. Then I had about 7 days for the stats exam but this time it's mechanics! I've not really got into exam mode, but already I'm out of it. It feels like the holidays already, and I was so tempted to 'break' into one of the books I have bought! Hmm, it's going to be difficult but I'm more positive about my revision for mechanics, because I don't mind the subject that much. Obviously I'm going to be complaining about the things I can't do, but hopefully in seven days I will be able to resolve any major problems I have. I'm going to first start on the mechanics and then do the ODE bit, since it's going to take me longer to understand mechanics. I'm not confident about my mechanics exam in the same way I felt about stats! (I hope we get our coursework back for mechanics!)

My plan: start revision tomorrow. The sooner I start the less panicky I will feel and the later I can get up in the morning of the exam! BTW I have to mention that the Sugden Sports Centre is NOT the best place to have exams, namely because the lights in the place were horrible. I really had to look up a few times and wonder whether the lights were on. It was like the lights in a hospital theatre, but a bit brighter. Maybe that's why I had a headache? (excuses but I really have to have all the lights on when revising etc).

I'm not sure whether to take all the library books which I have back to the library. I mean there are some which I don't want to take back yet, but I'm worried that they're going to be recalled during the summer holidays and we may be going on holidays! I'll gamble on the ones I think are going to be recalled and then return them ones, but who would want maths books over the summer? (apart from me that is!) I have quite a nice collection, and a wide variety of books as well. :D Is it that obvious what I'm hoping to do during the holidays!

Something depressing happened today, which I dare not mention. Maybe that explains the gloomy tone to this post? Yes, I still feel slightly under the weather, but hopefully tomorrow I'll be over it! Can't wait for Tuesday, if I may say so again. It's going to be a fun packed day with some mechanics thrown in. Hurrah.


*the waffling towards the end is because I'm trying to remember something but am failing miserably. Hmpf.

10 comments:

Jake said...

0, 0, 0, 0, 4, 9, 5, 1, 1, 0, 5


Some may see something there, but alas for me I am clueless. I have been sorting my stuff out today and on the back of some paper I found the above 'sequence'. I hadn't written '...' after it on my paper, but I'm guessing it does go on 'forever and forever'. Mr B. in further maths once made us jot that down, and he told us to ponder on it. I had written it on some chemistry work, so maybe I can be forgiven for thinking about Magnesium and the experiment which we had done on metals, upon looking at it! So does anyone have any idea what the next term could possibly be or what the heck them numbers mean?


Labelling the terms a_1,...,a_n ; I think that the last term there, a_11 should be 55.

If that is so, then here is one possible explanation for the sequence:

To find a_n, write n as a word and delete every letter apart from
i,v,x,l,c,d and m and then read as a roman numeral if possible or write 0 otherwise so,

a_1 = one = 0
a_2 = two = 0
a_3 = three = 0
a_4 = four = 0
a_5 = fIVe = 0
a_6 = sIX = 9
a_7 = seVen = 5
a_8 = eIght = 1
a_9 = nIne = 1
a_10 = ten = 0
a_11 = eLeVen = 55

Of course, it could just be that the terms are completely arbitrary and don't have any particular significance; after all, an infinite real valued sequence is just any map
f: N --> R
and hence could be anything really.

Jake said...

typo:

of course a_5 = fIVe = 4

Jake said...

Just as a point of interest, when you see sequences like this in tests and quizzes and so forth and they ask 'What is the next member of the sequence?' I always tend to but something completely arbitrary like 3465.01286343 and then say that there are an infinite number of sequences sharing the same 4,5 (or whatever they give you) first terms and that the next term I put is representative of an infinite subset of possible sequences, all of which are as good as any other.

I mean, they can't really argue with that can they? :)

steve said...

When faced with a sequence I always try the fantastic
The On-Line Encyclopedia of Integer Sequences first. Of course your sequence isn't there since it's not based on some sort of mathematical formula but last night's Dr Who's sequence 313, 331, 367, ...is there. In fact there are 12 such sequences of which 10 give the same answer as Dr Who even though they are constructed in different ways.

Jake said...

When faced with a sequence I always try the fantastic
The On-Line Encyclopedia of Integer Sequences first. Of course your sequence isn't there since it's not based on some sort of mathematical formula



I just had a look; if the 11 term was meant to be 55, then the sequence is up there. They didn't have anything for the sequence as posted however (with a_11 = 5)

http://www.research.att.com/~njas/sequences/?q=0%2C+0%2C+0%2C+0%2C+4%2C+9%2C+5%2C+1%2C+1%2C+0%2C+55&language=english&go=Search

beans said...

Jake: Wow that's pretty impressive! I think you have got it spot on. I'm thinking of emailing Mr. B, but then again I did mention that I must stop sending emails! :o


Lol, I think I can learn something from you! I tend to laugh nervously, mutter some lame comment and then say something stupid! (I guess now that I at least know more about sequences I can use that argument!)

beans said...

Steve: That's a handy link- now there's no need for my other post which had some 'tricky' sequences! (once again from my college file).

Nice to see Dr Who knows his maths! ;)

Jake said...

Jake: Wow that's pretty impressive! I think you have got it spot on. I'm thinking of emailing Mr. B, but then again I did mention that I must stop sending emails! :o


Well, I must admit then when I had first seen that sequence; it came with a big clue; something along the lines of 'Think about how a Roman would count One, Two, Three, Four,... etc.'. I think that without any hints, it would be very difficult to relate that meaning to the sequence, your teacher must have had high expectations of you! (I also think that he was a brave man to give his email address out to his students!)

Lol, I think I can learn something from you! I tend to laugh nervously, mutter some lame comment and then say something stupid! (I guess now that I at least know more about sequences I can use that argument!)

LOL. Well in 'Real Life' I tend to do the same thing; i.e. mutter something completely ridiculous; if my writing is jumbled and confusing enough, you should hear me actually try to say something out loud!

beans said...

I think he had high expectations of my class mate. ;) (There were only two of us you see!) Lol, he gave it on the last day of term, and he wanted me to keep in touch! Very brave indeed. You see most of the times my further maths lessons used to be just me, since the other student didn't attend (a topic for another post!) so we didn't always talk about maths. I must say, discussing football was how we normally tended to start the lessons!

It was his college email address, so he doesn't have to worry about getting any viruses etc. (ahem!) Might just send him an email sometime (I've been quite controlled and not sent one!).


Lol, dare I say 'high five'. :D

beans said...

I must also mention that I have a 'bad habit' of befriending teachers. Well some may call it bad, but I always enjoy having conversations with my teachers, to the surprise/dismay of others. I mean they're not only there to teach us, as I've said on numerous occasions. :)