POINTS_TABLE = [3, 5, 7, 1]

function score(answer) {
  result = 0
  for i in 0..4
    result += POINTS_TABLE[answer[i]]
  return result

answer = [1, 2, 1, 0]

s = score(answer)

The sum performed is 5 + 7 + 5 + 3 = 20. It uses the values from the input as the indexes to read from the POINTS_TABLE.

This is the style of the answer I'm trying to work out: \begin{equation} score(answer) = \sum_{i=1}POINTS\_TABLE_{answer_i} \end{equation}

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ I don't really understand. What's wrong with the expression you already have? "Mathematical notation" isn't a programming langauge with defined syntax and semantics; it's much more like a natural language and there are multiple ways of writing things. Some may be more or less appropriate, depending on what you want to use the notation for. $\endgroup$ Jan 14, 2017 at 22:24
  • $\begingroup$ Oh, I thought math notation was strict. The expression I have was my best attempt, I assumed it was wrong. $\endgroup$
    – Qgenerator
    Jan 14, 2017 at 22:28
  • $\begingroup$ So do mathematicians reading the notation it have to interpret it and try to guess what's meant? $\endgroup$
    – Qgenerator
    Jan 14, 2017 at 22:29
  • $\begingroup$ No, the author of the paper should explain all non-standard notation. $\endgroup$ Jan 14, 2017 at 22:34
  • $\begingroup$ However did you get the idea that this was a functional program? O.o $\endgroup$
    – Raphael
    Jan 14, 2017 at 22:34

1 Answer 1


While you are free to use whatever notation you want, as long as you explain it, it seems that the simplest solution here would be

$$ score(answer) = \sum_{i=0}^3 POINTS\_TABLE[answer[i]] $$

This should be self-explanatory in most circumstances.

  • $\begingroup$ What makes this the simplest? I've never seen notation that uses an array index like that. Would a non-programmer understand it? $\endgroup$
    – Qgenerator
    Jan 15, 2017 at 0:18
  • $\begingroup$ It's something I bet a lot of readers will understand. It's definitely not the simplest. It's just one reasonable solutions, there are many others. $\endgroup$ Jan 15, 2017 at 5:14

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