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Why was this textbook chosen?

Posted by robanaurochs 
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avatar Why was this textbook chosen?
May 26, 2006 09:25PM
I have been slowly going through this textbook and I am finding it a bit tedious. The only reason I've managed to get to the second assignment is because most of the stuff covered up till now was already done last year in COS161.

I find that the authors have placed FAR TOO MUCH weight on their computerised learning system and not enough on actual explanations in print. I would gladly throw away the CD for an appendix with only 10% of the exercises worked out. At the moment, I find myself wondering if I'm even doing anything correctly. Apart from this, we only get 3 assignments' worth of comments to figure out if we're on the right path or not.

I don't know about anybody else but I've not registered for the grade-grinder for the simple reason that you can blatantly see if your solutions are wrong when using the programmes that there's really no point in letting some webpage confirm it for you. Besides, I find those more mechanical-type questions a lot easier than the rest.

What really bugs me is that I like to go through ALL the exercises but the ones I find more valuable to work through all have little pencils next to them. According to the textbook, we're supposed to e-mail those to our lecturers to get them to comment on our solutions. This I'm loathed to do because I know how much work they've got to do and they'll probably get pissed off if every student send in every single little exercise.

I went to the book's website to see if there was a solutions manual for sale somewhere but I couldn't find one. The whole site seems to market the book around the fact that there is computer-assisted learning packaged with it. Well, sorry if I disappoint the authors but I think they've just used these programmes to grossly over-inflate the price of the textbook (the most expensive one this year) One that I've found the least value in. Tarsky's world is fun to play with but it more of a gimmick. I find Fitch and Boole more useful but I only use them for checking stuff I've worked out on paper.

I don't know if it's the case with any other students but I find the FOL notation extremely verbose and cumbersome. I find myself translating everything into P, Q and R, working out the problems like Gutenplan did and then translating back into FOL. I just think the notation adds unnecessary clutter to the page that makes it difficult to see what's going on.

Please would somebody explain why this textbook was chosen. I'd far rather have Gutenplan Part 2. At least he explained things clearly and there were sufficient examples and solutions to exercises.




In the meantime, will any lecturers object if I e-mail them my solutions for comment; just like the textbook instructs me to do?
Re: Why was this textbook chosen?
May 31, 2006 11:35AM
We are in the process of preparing a study guide with solutions for some of the exercises in the textbook, but at the mean time sent your solutions through to me l will find time to look at them.

Re: Why was this textbook chosen?
May 31, 2006 02:48PM
Hi Roban

I just wanted to agree with what you said above.

This text book is frustrating to say the least.

I tend to figure out what they're trying to say via the examples.

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