My textbook for numerical analysis is all symbols and no explanation. Seriously, in the middle of some derivation a phi symbol appeared. It's a function of x. There is no talk of where this came from. So in trying to apply it I made it 2x. Wrong answer. Then the book mentions a matrix named A. It never talks about what numbers constitute this matrix. So every time I end up consulting the internet, trying to find things like this least squares example to help me. I'm sure there are different schools of thought on this. One camp might argue that struggling through books and having to consult various resources and completely figure everything out yourself makes you stronger. Others would say the professor and book should be good enough to make the subject lucid.
Personally I don't mind spending time learning something, so long as I'm interested in it. I love doing that kind of stuff with software. But with this class--which due to administrative failures at UF--counts nothing toward my degree, it's such a huge waste of time.