March 7th, 2007

happytoast power lines

on failure to communicate

thinking about http://www.haacked.com/archive/2007/02/27/Why_Cant_Programmers._Read.aspx

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In other news, I'm curious about something, about my readers. I'm kind of interested, not in a "can you solve this problem", but in a "how/would you solve this problem" kind of way. One of my co-workers posted a brain-twister on his wall, in an attempt to see how many people could come up with a solution. Here's the problem:

Get the next number in the sequence

1
1 1
2 1
1 2 1 1
1 1 1 2 2 1
3 1 2 2 1 1
1 3 1 1 2 2 2 1
?

I'm not so much interested in if you can solve it. I'm more interested in how you would solve it. Are you the type of person who is bored by such a test? Are you intimidated by it? Does it excite or frustrate you? Are you the kind of person who would google the answer? Are you bored by this, or have you seen it and know the answer already? Are you the person who would try to come up with a "O(log n)" program to solve it for any member "n" of the sequence? Does talking about O(log n) solutions turn you on, even if you don't know what they are? Does it turn you on more if you do know what it is?

I think it would be kind of interesting to find out, of the people who read this, what kind of person you think you are. Answer honestly- I'll even turn screening on this post if you're not sure you want to go on public record (let me know if I can unscreen it!)