easier new problems?

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blurfl
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easier new problems?

Post by blurfl »

I've reached the point where I cannot solve more than about 100 problems without more education. They have become too difficult. Is there any interest in providing "easier" new problems? I suspect others have the same issue and have given up on Project Euler after reaching their limit. I don't want to give up on the site, but I don't see any alternatives. Any suggestions other than "go back to school, kid". :)

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euler
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Re: easier new problems?

Post by euler »

Solving problems can be quite addictive and when a mass of "easy" problems lie in-front of you the temptation is to solve the next, solve the next, and so on, until you can't solve any more. Sorry if you've already done this, but there is a mass of learning that can be found in the threads of the problems you have solved. As you delve deeper (beyond your current scope of knowledge), the trick is to notice similarities with previous problems and go back to the threads. I realise that there are a lot of posts containing nothing more than code, but others spend time generously explaining their thinking and sometimes this can help to trigger one of those aha! moments. Sometimes you can even learn from just the code. Look at how others solved the problem using your preferred language. You will be surprised how many different ways you can solve the same problem and seeing how someone else has approached the problem might also provide inspiration.

Going "through the threshold" is an important step for most members here. That often means learning to learn in a new way. One which will help you develop independent learning skills, discovering where and how to make use of information that can be found online (and I obviously don't mean answers!), and hopefully this will increase your hunger to go further.

Maybe others who were once in your position can share their wisdom.
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MuthuVeerappanR
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Re: easier new problems?

Post by MuthuVeerappanR »

This post has a lot people sharing their experience at your (or our) stage.

I've also listed some topics in the above thread which can help in solving many PE problems.

Happy Solving!!
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hk
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Re: easier new problems?

Post by hk »

Risking to say something you know already, but did you try to sort the problems on increasing difficulty?
That might reveal some higher numbered problems you could try to solve too.
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pjt33
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Re: easier new problems?

Post by pjt33 »

I think one useful tool is simply to classify. A large chunk of problems are fundamentally about prime factorisations of integers from 1 to N: i.e. number theory. (They can be further classified: e.g. problems which rely on efficient counting of primes up to N). A smaller chunk of problems are about Markov processes. A reasonable number are about solutions to quadratic Diophantine equations (and that includes a good number which on first glance seem to be about geometry). Quite a few are about linear recurrences. Etc.

If you try to classify the problems you have solved and the ones you haven't, that might show you where, as @euler said, you can learn a technique from the discussion thread of a problem you have solved and apply it to one which seemed out of reach. It may be useful to first apply it to a problem you've already solved, where you know what the answer should be and you can tell when you must be doing it wrong. I thought I "knew" linear recurrences, but I picked up a cryptically expressed idea from the thread for Problem 258 which made my linear recurrence library much faster - and also explained some even more cryptic expressions of the same idea which I'd seen in other threads.

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Re: easier new problems?

Post by vamsikal3 »

Get Elementary Number Theory 7th Edition by David Burton and work through the book. It will greatly help you in becoming better at Project Euler problems. I worked through the first seven chapters of that book and that helped me quite a bit. You could also try to solve easy problems on other websites like CodeForces, LeetCode, HackerRank etc. Solving problems at these other websites helps you become a better programmer / problem-solver. It indirectly makes you better at solving PE problems too ...
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