Checking a Number for Palindromic Behavior

Tim Chase python.list at tim.thechases.com
Wed Oct 21 22:56:01 CEST 2009


rurpy at yahoo.com wrote:
> On 10/21/2009 01:40 AM, Lie Ryan wrote:
>> rurpy at yahoo.com wrote:
>>>>> 1) It may look like a homework problem to you but it
>>>>>  probably isn't.
>>>>>  Seehttp://groups.google.com/group/comp.lang.python/msg/8ac6db43b09fdc92
>>>> Homework comes in many forms - school driven homework should be
>>>> treated the same as self driven research, IMO. You're not doing it to
>>>> be told the answer, you're likely doing it to learn.
>>> As I said in point (5), you are not in a position to
>>> decide how someone else best learns, even if your guess
>>> that the question is homework, contrary to the evidence
>>> in the url, is correct.

Amusingly, this came along today:
http://lifehacker.com/5386722/get-it-wrong-before-you-google-to-learn-it-better

I'd postulate that the same holds for heaving a question out on 
c.l.p without taking at crack at it yourself.  Try it, and if you 
fail, take your findings to the great Google or to Usenet.  But 
not even trying (or evidencing your effort) is bound to get you 
ignored or derided.  Effectively "Hey programmer people, do my 
work for me".

>> OTOH, since the poster took the trouble of registering to a newsgroup,
>> posting his problem, waiting a few hours for replies, and checking the
>> group for replies, requesting clarification, thanking, and getting back
>> to normal day activities;
> 
> You are way overstating the effort involved here.
> Especially if the poster has posted to the group before
> usually the only significant effort is writing the message
> (and thinking about the responses of course but that has
> to be done no matter where the poster seeks help.)

While some usenet relays throw up more roadblocks than others, 
with both Google Groups and various other usenet hosts, posting 
to a newsgroup is a pretty simple task with little more effort 
than typing in a couple text-boxes.

> You are also way understating the effort in Googling
> something.  I have spent literally days wading through
> thousands of pages of Google results trying to find
> accuate info before.

This seems more to be a lack of your own google-fu...

> No it doesn't imply any such thing.  It is exactly this
> narrowness of focus, this inability to see alternate
> explanations, that is leading you to think that
> providing hints is the single one and only right
> way of responding to any simple question on this list.
> 
> They may post here because, ...(ready for this?)...
> they want a direct answer to their question!

The best way to get a direct answer is to show that you've 
already made some effort.  Usually this involves including some 
code.  It's a newsgroup composed of people volunteering their 
time conversing with others, not a vending-machine thanklessly 
spewing free answers.

> Which is precisely the problem,  You claim that purpose
> is the single, only, best way of helping the person you are
> answering.  I am simply claiming you don't know that, can't
> in a general sense know that.  If you want to play teacher
> and provide that style of answer, fine.  But since you
> (collective) have demonstrated that you are not even
> able to accurately identify when someone is asking about
> a homework problem (but are still arrogantly willing to
> try), it is pretty reasonable for us "thems" to doubt your
> claims that you know the best way to answer questions

Just because you can find a few examples where intuition was 
wrong doesn't mean it's not the correct approach.  Contrariwise, 
it's good evidence that many folks laugh it off and give enough 
context to demonstrate it's not homework (such as .  However 
folks clearly do post homework questions to the list (I'm 
particularly amused by the ones that forget to remove the 
question number from the homework they copy&pasted from) and most 
list-members can detect the scent of homework compared to real work.

> Please remember, I am only saying that simply answering
> a question, as asked, is not a bad thing.

My hope then is that these people whom you coddle with spoon-fed 
answers end up working with/for you instead of me.

-tkc






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