[quote]Zap Branigan wrote:

evansmi wrote:

deapee wrote:

I didn’t see the point in high school, I didn’t see the point in college, and I don’t see the point of that now. Last time I used pythagoreans theorem was 1999.

So the chinese are better at solving stupid equations that 1% of the worldwide population needs to know how to solve. 3/4ths of that 1% are the people that write the books.

3/4ths??? There are a lot more engineers around than you know, and yes, many engineers need to know that stuff.

Doesn’t look that hard. Just tedious. Basic geometry. People use that stuff every day.[/quote]

Well, I wouldn’t say basic geometry, since I don’t think basic geometry (the stuff most US students learn in highs chool) teaches angles between planes or angles between noncoplanar lines. However, the first problem can be easily solved with some basic linear algebra (vectors, etc.), which can be learned even in the US by as early as 10th or 11th grade.

And the second question is trivial because it shows how much easier college UK math problem are than high school Chinese math problems.

The question is hard, but not impossible for a high school student. I know that the better students in some of my old classes could solve it with a bit of thought, but the whole point of a test is that some of the questions will be too hard for most of the students to solve. If everyone gets everything right on an entranace exam that’s supposed to differentiate students, what’s the point?