Houdayer knows what he's talking about, but he's the only one: his English is unintelligible, embarrassingly so in office hours. If you listen really closely to everything he says, you can pick it up, but in the process you don't pick up the actual mathematical concepts being discussed. It's really easy to zone out in lecture because you don't hear words, only some sort of babbling. He seems concerned about student learning but he doesn't appear to be a teacher by trade.
though he is a good teacher, knows the material very very well, and goes into depth in a lot of abstract concepts, there is one word i can use to describe this course: relentless. his curve is very tough, the midterms require you to understand all aspects of the material covered, and you have to do all sorts of proofs and problems to do well. i, for one, physically and mentally was unable to do the homework by myself as it is pretty difficult. going to office hours with the TA is essential if you want to guarantee passing the midterms and homework. it's a 5 day a week class, so you better make sure you're willing to commit to that topic for a quarter. i wasnt.