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RE: Functional Paradigm popularity and Maths (Was: XML as a transition to s-expr)

Joe Marshall writes:
 > > I don't expect a new hire to understand lattices and retracts, but he
 > > better understand a linked list.

David Simmons responds:
 > And, I'll say it again, real understanding of recursion and the ability
 > to think in terms of lists (or more properly a solid grasp on discrete
 > mathematics) is not essential.

I don't want to put words in Joe's mouth, but I understood "recursion
and lists" to be much simpler than "discrete mathematics".  Like,
here's a test you might give to an interviewee:

1. Write a factorial function that doesn't use a looping construct.

2. Choose a data structure for a collection of objects such that
   insertion at the front is a constant-time operation.

While it would be great if everyone knew how to do proof by induction,
you're right that that's not essential.  But I don't think that's what
Joe was saying.