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About Forcas

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  1. Good CS Books

    I'll second CLRS Intro to Algorithms. That is by far my favorite CS book. To become good with classic algorithms, I would also reccomend competing on Other Good Books: -Curves and Surfaces in Geometric Modeling: Theory and Algorithms by Jean Gallier -AI: A Modern Approach by Russel and Norvig -Purely Functional Data Structures by Chris Okasaki (most of it is available free on the web) -A Computational Introduction to Number Theory and Algebra by Victor Shoup (also available free on the web) -Compilers: Principles, Techniques, and Tools by Aho, Sethi, and Ullman.
  2. What is wrong with crossdressing?

    I find it hilarious that one poster in this thread had to assert their own heterosexuality.
  3. C++ and Python

    For more info on using Boost and C++ together, read about extending and embedding on the Python/C API documentation, found at With Boost.Python(, you can write functions just as you normally would in C++, and then call them in Python.
  4. Recommend me a nice Jazz Album?

    Still Life talking and The Way Up are very good Pat Metheny albums. I also reccomend Secret Story.
  5. Need an Algorithm in O(n^n)

    O(n^n) algorithms: insertion sort merge sort bogosort binary search strlen the list goes on...
  6. a few paintings

    Wow, great stuff. My favorites are the paintings of the moonbase, and the person sitting under the street lamp.
  7. Quote:Original post by ktuluorion The best schools don't even have you touch programming at the beginning, because it is assumed that anyone can learn to program. Computer science is a SCIENCE. MIT and Berkeley certainly teach programming at the beginning with SICP. When you say "good schools," which schools are you referring to? There's nothing magical about science. Just as with anything else, you can learn about it from a book. IMHO, books are far better than lectures, because the material contained in books has been carefully organized to convey information to the reader as clearly as possible. In addition, you can read through books at your own pace. I'm a DigiPen student. I happen to enjoy the algorithm competitions on TopCoder. This is my topcoder profile: My rating tends to oscillate around a point which is higher than all rated U.S. universities except MIT and Stanford. Most of you would probably consider the algorithmic knowledge involved in these competitions outside the realm of DigiPen, and rightfully so. I did not learn this material at DigiPen. Where from, then? From books. Imagine that. Just as with game programming, C++, and Graphics API's, it is possible to teach yourself algorithms. I am not the only one at DigiPen who has taught myself about algorithms, and algorithms is not the only subject that I have taught myself. There are plenty of reasons to go to college. That a college teaches computer science is not reason enough warrant attending. Quote: And yes, 152 credits means nothing. I could open a school, and say that everyone takes eleventy thousand credits per semester, and that doesn't make it good. True. I think that DigiPen requires too many credits. Quote: Let's face it, the specifics of game programming, and programming in general, aren't that difficult to master. Now this, I disagree with. To master programming, you have to program A LOT. You have to find which attitudes and environments are most conducive to productive coding. You have to learn to wrap your head around a section of a large project to the extent where you can safely manipulate it. These things do not come naturally, and they are not easy. Quote: If I was in a position to hire, yes, I would want someone who could program games. I would also, however, want someone who was well rounded, and could do ANYTHING that I threw at them, beyond game programming. In other words, you want someone who can adapt. DigiPen students can do this as well as any other intelligent human being. Quote: Look at it this way: It is probably pretty difficult to work on a game that deals with history if you do not have an understanding of history. Now, let's say two candidates BOTH don't know about history. One has gone to Digipen, the other has gone to Harvard. One would assume that the one who has gone to Harvard has gotten the education required to go out and do the research on a topic outside of the realm of game programming, organize that information, and create something meaningful out of it in a timely manner. I would make no such assumption of someone from Digipen, who has no general education to speak of. I would hire a desginer with a strong and immediate interest in history. There are plenty out there. I doubt that a programmer's knowledge of history would be vital to the development of any game. Quote: There is also just the general fulfillment part. Doesn't it feel nice to be able to converse with intellectuals on an array of topics? I feel that with my education I can speak with others on almost any topic. How can a game programming school allow you to achieve full intellectual growth? Sorry if my rant/response seems off topic. It seems to be implied everywhere in this thread that college is the only source of education, and that the only way to be exposed to new ideas is through college. If this were true, the world would be a sad, sad place.
  8. capn_midnight, it's funny just how similar your degree is to an RTIS degree at DigiPen. Quote:Original post by capn_midnight At this point, I'm also equipped to create a complete graphics library from scratch. You may have learned how to use OpenGL or DirectX to an advanced level, but do you nderstand *how* it does what it does? I'm also equipped to invent new processes and give them the academic workover necessary to prove their validity. I was a particularly good software engineering student, so I'm equipped to lead a team in the development of an application. Most DigiPen graduates can say the same thing. The standard DigiPen curriculum doesn't touch OpenGL or DirectX until Junior year. During our Sophomore year, we implement software renderers. As for thinking outside the box, DigiPen offers a few general education courses. Someone joked that Maslow's Heirarchy and Baroque painting aren't all that useful in game developemnt; maybe so, but I have learned about both at DigiPen in ENG 320 (communication in small groups) and ART 210 (Art Appreciation) respectively. Do DigiPen students have the same opportunities in non-technical areas as students at other universities? No, and that may be a valid point against DigiPen. Keep in mind, however, that not all of our courses are related to CS and math. I disagree with the people who have said that programming is a simple task. Producing large quantities of stable, readable code requires a certain mindset that I have only been able to strive toward through trial and error. Does a regular CS degree include enough programming assignments to allow for this? I'm sure it does to a certain extent, but I suspect DigiPen has the advantage in this regard.
  9. Programmers that can't do shit

    The dot product formula is pretty fundemental. How are you going to understand the plane equation, ax+by+cz+d=0, if you don't recognize it as a dot product? I'm going to have to agree with JBourrie here. I expect anyone who has worked in the 3D environment to know the dot product formula.
  10. Pathfinding using Lua

    If path length is the number of nodes traversed, and if your game is turn-based, a bfs should be able to handle 80*80 nodes just fine.
  11. Assuming you're not talking about the branch of mathematics called "game theory," I'm going to have to throw in with A*.
  12. You do have a point, LessBread. I don't know if self study can work as well for everyone as it has for me. I just wish our society offered more encouragement for people to take the initiative to learn. Perhaps there are people who could benefit from self study, but choose not to because they are led to believe that school will teach them everything they want to know.
  13. Quote:Original post by LessBread Absolutely no reason? How many people do you know that purchase text books, read them, do the excercises on their own and then craft their own tests and take them? And how many of them never went to college ever? When I was a Sophomore in High School, I took the AP Computer Science (studied for it independently.) The next year, what was I supposed to do? Wait until college to learn any more CS? Of course not! I had an opportunity to further my knowledge, so I took it. I asked my parents to buy CLRS for me. They did. I learned about algorithimc complexity, analysis, randomized algorithms, etc. I also read my sister's textbook on Discrete Math. From that, I learned about mathematical logic, methods of proof (contradiction, induction, etc..,) set theory, combinatorics, number theory, and probability. I had a friend who knew a lot about philosophy, a subject which was not taught in high school. He did take a few courses on philosophy at a community college, but I figured that most of his philosophy knowledge was self-taught. Admittedly, I did not craft tests and take them. Taking tests isn't really necessary for learning. Doing excercises is sufficient, though.
  14. Quote:Original post by jsgcdude There's a quote that goes 'college is for people who have to be told what to do' implying people goto college because they don't have the drive or ambition to succeed on their own. Clearly this is an older quote because it doesn't make as much sense today as did back in the days of the self taught entrepreneurs like Edison, Bell, of Ford. Today people goto college to get that peice of paper. I totally agree. College is all about the piece of paper these days. Some people act as if college is the only place for people to learn to teach themselves. As far as I know, college students learn through experience. In college you read text books, do the excercises contained in said text books, and take tests. There is absolutely no reason why people can't do this without college.
  15. What's wrong with people?

    Does the guy committing suicide hurt YOU? If not, why are you so mad? It's sad for him and his family, sure, but I don't think it's something to get angry about. It almost feels wrong to get mad at someone who became sad enough to commit suicide.