I took last week off so that I could catch up on programming projects and try my hand at gardening/landscaping.   Mastering object-oriented programming has been a key goal since I began blogging.   Like any skill, practice makes perfect, so last week I began a new project to test my OOPContinue Reading

Designing software, like practicing medicine, is in essence about solving problems.   Patients do not present with a series of multiple-choice answers from which one may select, and complex software systems are never built using stock requirements.   Both activities are as much art as science, and the results vary greatly amongContinue Reading

Clinical care consists of processes.  Examining patients, prescribing medications, mailing bills, reviewing charts–they are all processes.   Fortunately, there exists a perfectly good way of describing processes mathematically using graphs.  Graph theory originated when Leonhard Euler attempted to solve a simple problem mathematically.  The town of Konigsberg, where he lived, hadContinue Reading

Until I began studying discrete math, my idea of a function was something along the lines of formulae such as f(x) = x3, e=mc2, or F=ma.  Very likely, this is true for most people.   Math education from elementary algebra to differential equations focuses on functions that return a real number value.  Continue Reading

We saw in the last post that taking the Cartesian product of two sets results in a collection of ordered pairs.   Now, we are going to explore how ordered pairs and larger groupings can be used to organize information using relations. Here is the definition of a relation taken fromContinue Reading

Everything can be expressed as a set—the rooms in a building, the providers in a practice, penicillins—everything.  When one studies the basics of set theory – unions, intersections, subsets and the like—the concepts seem so simple, even obvious, that it is difficult to believe that Georg Cantor  had to dreamContinue Reading