Charles Petzold on writing books, reading books, and exercising the internal UTM

Recent Entries
< PreviousBrowse the ArchivesNext >
Subscribe to the RSS Feed

“Hearts and Minds” Redux

March 31, 2009
New York, N.Y.

I see in Newsweek (4/6/09, pg. 8) that Peter Davis's 1975 Academy Award winning documentary Hearts and Minds is being re-released. Deirdre and I watched the film on DVD a couple years ago and found that it still holds up quite well.

I reviewed Hearts and Minds for the April 11, 1975 issue of The Stute, the student newspaper of the Stevens Institute of Technology, where I was then a senior, and here is that review. I have not attempted to correct any faulty grammar or improve the writing.


I am a computer science graduade with 5 years of programming exp , I am trying to work on my math skills for over a decade and there is no substantial progress, no matter what I do math is like a greek to me. I now have over 200 books in my library , on mathematics/logic but nothing helps at all.In fact its getting worse , if I see a mathmetical equation , I feel like having a sezure. I tried reading

1.Art of Computer Programming ,Knuth (I bought the 3 volumes , in 1999 but I only manage to read 2 chapters of first volume , and get so horrified that not open the book since 2006)

2.Introduction to mathematical philosphy , bernard russel.(My TA in university told me this is a amazing book and a must read, when I bought it , I just dont get to that level to even read it, infact if I read it for more than 15 mins , I fall a sleep.)

3.Principa Mahematica (I bought this along with , the book mentioned above,and have same effect on me as the above mentioned one.Plus I dont feel asleep but rather my hair fell)

I just dont know, I think its some hard wiring in me that stop me from learning and absorbing math.

I dont know how you even write a book on Turing Machines without having a heart attack.I want to read and learn math/logic but I am almost giving up on it :(

— ofortuna, Mon, 13 Apr 2009 04:09:47 -0400 (EDT)

Dont give up yet...maybe you just need another perspective...I can recommend trying to solve programming problems which needs equation-work to function...that way you will not start by looking at the solution but at the road to the solution....just an idea

Never give up :-)

Wayne, Fri, 17 Apr 2009 08:08:40 -0400 (EDT)

I assure you that leaders of Oriental countries have the same lack of value for human life as Westmoreland and other leaders of western countries have. Westmoreland didn't know that ordinary people put a higher value on life because Westmoreland didn't know any ordinary people, just like rulers of Oriental countries don't know any ordinary people.

However, it is true that ordinary people are backwards and primitive. Leaders keep them that way by stealing their land, stealing their minerals, stealing the food they grow, stealing their lives, denying them educations, imprisoning anyone who gets an education, etc. Same as America did to its native races. It is very true that the ordinary, backwards, primitive people are not the worst savages.

— A resident of the Orient, Wed, 22 Apr 2009 19:40:51 -0400 (EDT)

Recent Entries
< PreviousBrowse the ArchivesNext >
Subscribe to the RSS Feed

(c) Copyright Charles Petzold