Learning linear algebra with Scala

Ruurtjan Pul
Quick Code
Published in
2 min readJul 13, 2018


I recently came across 3Blue1Brown’s “Essence of linear algebra” YouTube playlist. As the title implies, it covers the basics of linear algebra. Instead of focusing on the math though, it lays down a foundation that gives you a visual intuition that helps you reason about it. I would highly recommend this if you’ve never really grasped linear algebra that you’ve been taught in university, or if you’ve never gotten around learning about linear algebra at all.

3Blue1Brown’s Essence of linear algebra intro

While watching the first video, I decided to code it all out in Scala to let it materialize. That’s when it really clicked for me. While typing out the float multiplications I noticed just how simple the underlying operations are. It now really makes sense to me that GPU’s are optimized for floating point operations as all vector and matrix manipulations are encoded by multiplying or dividing floats. Loving it, thanks Grant!

Now it’s your turn to get your hands dirty. I’ve open sourced the unit tests here. There’s also a branch with my solutions if you feel the need to cheat ;) These are the functions you’ll be implementing while you watch the videos:

Vector operations that you’ll implement
Matrix operations that you’ll implement

There might be a lot of terms you’re not familiar with yet, but don’t worry, it will all make sense when you go through the videos.

If you have any additions or corrections, I’d really appreciate a fork and merge request.

Happy hacking!