daniel.carlos's blog

By daniel.carlos, history, 6 weeks ago, In English

What to do when i don't understand the editorial?

Hello, codefriends, my name is Daniel and for a long time i've been thinking about what to do when I don't understand the editorial of a problem.

Let me formalize, if you is newbie, pupil or specialist(I cannot speak to any division above that) maybe you've read an editorial that you didn't understand,me to and this happens frequently for me, but I don't want it to happen anymore,so I'll explain my case.

First I would like to say that my English is very bad and that certainly influences my reading of the editorials, but in many problems i can understand exactly what the editorials are saying, but do not interpret in the context of the problem (i read but i do not understand how it works).

What I usually do is: Consolidate the reading of the code together with the reading of the editorial and this works well for many implementation, graphs and greedy problems for example,but when I find myself trying to solve math, number theory and bitwise problems using the editorial it seems like I'm reading blindfolded, I can't even understand 60% and that makes it impossible to understand the code.

That's why I want your help. What can i do to not have this defect? Is this normal for my rating? Can this happen for those who are high rating? How can I improve in math, number theory and bitwise?

 
 
 
 
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6 weeks ago, # |
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Sorry for the low level in english.

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6 weeks ago, # |
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In this case, I simply look at the codes of the top participants because their codes are usually quite short and understandable. Once you checked around 10 solutions, I hope you will understand it (at least what to do in general). I think it will work for you.

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6 weeks ago, # |
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Read comments section.Most likely you'll find very good explainations.

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6 weeks ago, # |
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Most of the time editorials are not very well written (writing editorial is hard indeed) and thus they require you to sort of know a bit of the idea beforehand. Maybe your skills of reading could be improved, but improving your algorithmic skills can also help you understand editorials more easily. What happens with me sometimes is: I read the editorial, at first I dont quite get the whole idea but it influences me on where I should start to think, and then I sort of come up with the solution on my own.

There is no easy fix to that. Think of it in this way: would an english professor be able to understand a mathematical paper? They sure know how to read, but they might not know math. Things that can help you are: read the editorial and then think hard again, read others code, watch youtube tutorials, ask questions, read more about the tag of the problem, etc

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6 weeks ago, # |
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Reading any editorial and in general any scientific text is hard. It requires extensive and thorough knowledge of the topic and hand. The simplest advice I could give is when you encounter some concept with which you are not too familiar, try to fins some additional literature, further your understanding of the topic at hand and return to the editorial.

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6 weeks ago, # |
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Recently some people are uploading video editorials. You can find those links in comment section. Watching them might help you. Also asking someone who already solved the problem is always a good idea I think.

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6 weeks ago, # |
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Read the comment section and read the code of the participants

Unfortunately most editorials are shitty and authors don't bother explaining anything. I just accepted it. I often can't even understand the explanation behind the problems I myself did solve during the contest

It is perfectly normal to post in an editorial some exotic solution no one really used during the contest or describe an algorithm in some form of pseudocode without any insights, or use some fancy function without explanation. Even solutions in the editorials often contain things like combinations of macroses, ternary operators and goto statements. It's definetely impossible to solve green-level tasks without those things. Very educational indeed

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6 weeks ago, # |
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there are a lot of youtube channels that explain it very nicely, you can surely watch the solutions and explanations there, they will help you out. Of course, after the contest ends.

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6 weeks ago, # |
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create post on codeforces with title "What to do when i dont understand the editorial?" ofc

if no jokes then this