Problem with recursion? (was [plt-scheme] Re: Novice needs help writing function )

From: Yavuz Arkun (yarkun at
Date: Fri Jan 4 18:09:44 EST 2008

Matt Jadud wrote:
> On Jan 4, 2008 5:24 PM, Yavuz Arkun <yarkun at> wrote:
>> Heh, I didn't say anything about stacks or assembly level thinking, but
>> everyone thinks that I meant that. (I wonder if that reveals anything
>> about the phobias of CS academics...hmm.)
> [snip]
>> Drawing on the students' prior exposure to mathematical induction could
>> help understanding, of course, but shouldn't come at the cost of ending
>> up with obviously inefficient code, because that would unfairly
>> associate "recursion" with "inefficiency" in students' minds.
>> Yavuz
> Hi Yavuz,
> What is your particular experience with teaching computing? You seem
> to have a lot of insights about computing academics and students in
> this context---where are you from? What do you teach?
> Cheers,
> Matt
I gave my background a few posts back.  I am not a teacher. You could 
say that I have been at the receiving end a lot though. I thought that 
people who are teachers might be interested in what someone who is 
(re)learning some of these concepts these very days is thinking. After 
all, when you design a product, even if it is a product that you 
yourself use, you are supposed to go to a sample of consumers and ask 
them what they think.

As for the "insights" about academics, maybe I am a bit biased because 
the bits that I have been exposed to do not have much in common with the 
"science" part of CS. As far as I am concerned, Computer Science should 
have been called Programming Engineering. (As I am an relapsed engineer 
myself, this is not intended as slur.)

I am sorry if you feel that I am speaking out of turn.


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