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  1. C

    C/++/# Jumping straight into C++ without programming knowledge

    I'm asking how you handle creation of objects at runtime without using pointers.
  2. C

    C/++/# Jumping straight into C++ without programming knowledge

    Just out of interest, what do you do when you need to allocate an object on the heap?
  3. C

    Java Java noob - help setting up eclipse

    Your code compiles and runs fine here. My guess is that when you made your new project in Eclipse, you probably selected the wrong project type. Typically, you'll want to use New Project -> Java Project, *not* any others since this may introduce dependencies that you haven't satisfied. By the...
  4. C

    Python Python, scientific computing, and supercomputers

    Unless you give specific examples, discussions such as this are pointless. Python will be fine for lots of use cases; for others it will be utterly horrible. A case in point is the sort of code that one is likely to put on hardware that qualifies as a supercomputer. Python is *horrible* at...
  5. C

    Graduate Studies in the UK

    It's very, very common not to be funded by your university when doing graduate studies in the UK. Most UK residents seek funding from EPSRC directly or enter a programme for which funding has already been secured from a body external to the university. Some universities, however, are wealthy...
  6. C

    Evaluating high-degree polynomials

    First off, that file isn't from the Mathworks; it's a user submission to the Matlab File Exchange. As you've learned, anything you get from there should be treated with suspicion until it's known to be good. You're also correct that this is a precision issue. The first few terms in the...
  7. C

    MATLAB Matlab help! User defined function!

    Works fine for me. What is the precise command that you're using to test the function?
  8. C

    Automatic pattern recognition and data modeling

    A computer can't do that for precisely the same reason that a human can't: it's impossible to unambiguously identify that as evidence of a linear relationship unless you supply more information to constrain the model selection. In fact, if you try to fit functions to that particular set of data...
  9. C

    Schools King's College London Maths/physics presitge

    Congratulations on the offer. King's is a very, very good university and their mathematics department is particularly good. In my opinion they're clearly in the top five in the UK in terms of their undergraduate mathematics and physics degrees.
  10. C

    Parsing HTML and Searching Text

    It's a pity you're not using Python. This is something that could be solved trivially using a combination of Python, regular expressions, and Beautiful Soup.
  11. C

    What is the Security Clearance in the UK?

    You'll typically be dealing with either SC or DV clearance in the United Kingdom. You don't apply for clearance; your prospective employer applies to the government - typically to either the Foreign Office, the Met, or the DBS NSV - on your behalf. Some positions require clearance directly from...
  12. C

    C/++/# C++ is crazy difficult.

    Such as? There are several reasons why references are a good idea. Here's two off the top of my head: For safety reasons, when using pointers you need to be obsessive about checking for nulls; references are guaranteed to always be non-null. References give you a straightforward way of...
  13. C

    C/++/# C++ is crazy difficult.

    Here's a strange pointer-related "feature" of C++. Suppose we define a five-element array of ints, a, to store the integers from 0 to 4. Everyone knows that the following prints '4' to stdout: std::cout << a[4] << std::endl; If you want to mess with someone's head, the same result can be...
  14. C

    C/++/# C++ is crazy difficult.

    This has always mystified me since Java has pointers too: Java references are, in fact, just pointers. In my experience there are a couple of things in particular that seem to blow Java programmers minds when they come to programming in C++: the lack of a garbage collector and the...
  15. C


    One data set is measured over the time interval [3400, 8200] whereas the other is over the interval [38000, 38600]. Why would you expect them to be synchronized?
  16. C

    Physics A physics major is not good preparation for a career in software development

    Two points spring to mind: Without defining what you mean by "typical science-based application", it's difficult to comment further. But for the sorts of "typical science-based applications" of which I have direct experience (numerical relativity, machine learning, and DNA...
  17. C

    Physics A physics major is not good preparation for a career in software development

    Someone once said that 90% of software development consists of searches and sorts. Assuming that to be true (and ignoring the remaining 10%, which is actually a quite important 10%), a typical physics degree isn't going to teach you how to search and sort data to any acceptable degree. Sure...
  18. C

    FInding the area of pentagon (on x,y,z axis) using trinagles?

    Draw the pentagon on a piece of paper. Identify the non-overlapping triangles defined by the points you're given. Calculate the area of each of these triangles. Add them together.
  19. C

    Schools College drop out, Good choice educationally?

    No. Not only would I say that you don't have a good chance, I'd say that you have essentially no chance.
  20. C

    Studying Is it OK to ask professor to use different textbook?

    Misner, Thorne, and Wheeler is a forty year old book too. There would be violence if anyone suggested that I teach GR without it. :-)
  21. C

    Books on differential geometry

    If you're coming at this from a physicist's point of view, both Nakahara's and Chris Isham's books on differential geometry are great. (Google is your friend, etc.)
  22. C

    Book on Data Structures for beginners

    It depends on the level at which you want to study them. Cormen et al is still the standard text on data structures (and it really is great) but it's very much geared towards computer scientists. Robert Sedgewick has a great track record with his "Algorithms" series of books, all of which treat...
  23. C

    Choosing a good book in QM?

    Sakurai's Modern Quantum Mechanics is outstanding but isn't, in my opinion, all that suitable as a first text; Griffiths' "Introduction to Quantum Mechanics" is much more appropriate for that.
  24. C

    Schools College drop out, Good choice educationally?

    Regardless of where you end up in life, you're ultimately going to have to go into the world at some point to get a job and support yourself. Progression in any job involves political considerations and knowing when to keep your mouth shut. Thinking that you're somehow above all of that is a...
  25. C

    Physics Choosing a Physics course.

    To succeed at a straight physics undergraduate degree in the UK it really, really, really helps to have A or A* grades in physics and mathematics at A-level; in my opinion a BTEC is in no way an acceptable alternative.
  26. C

    Physics A physics major is not good preparation for a career in software development

    D H will have his own take on this but I learned all the SQL I ever needed in the course of a day. That included a run through on relational algebras, projections, and the query language itself. Unless you're actually designing databases you really don't need to know an awful lot of SQL to be...
  27. C

    Schools College drop out, Good choice educationally?

    Unless there's a very good reason for it, seeing that a student has taken longer than usual to complete his/her degree is already a red flag; seeing that it was for a patently ridiculous idea like the one you're proposing is enough to get your application binned. I know that you don't want to...
  28. C

    Schools College drop out, Good choice educationally?

    I can't speak for other universities but here the policy for masters candidates is the same as that for doctoral candidates: no relevant first degree, no entry. Even if they could gain entry, no scholarship committee is going to award them the funding to pay for it. A career in physics is, as...
  29. C

    Schools College drop out, Good choice educationally?

    Speaking as someone who is directly involved in the selection of graduate students, I can say without any doubt whatsoever that if somebody applies for a PhD programme here without first having obtained an undergraduate degree, their application quickly finds its way into the bin. You would...