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 Things unused

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1PostSubject: Things unused   Thu Dec 17, 2015 11:07 am

I never used algebra in my life.
How many things do we learn we never used? Were they worth the learning?
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2PostSubject: Re: Things unused   Thu Dec 17, 2015 3:30 pm

IMO there are two kinds of education: memorizing information and learning how to do things. Information is useful to us only when we need it often enough that looking it up would be a waste of time, but skills can't be acquired quickly through research, so they are often very useful even if use them only rarely. For example, I haven't done any swimming for at least twenty years, but if I suddenly found myself in deep water, I would start swimming instinctively, whereeas someone who had never learned to swim might drown.

However, algebra is a skill, not a body of information, just as doing arithmetic is, and having learned both in elementary school can be useful in solving number problems in general throughout our lives.
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