Unfortunately, high school math isn't "basic understanding", it's in fact advanced. Most people do not have any idea how to multiply matrix to vector, or that matrix may be multiplied to something, or that matrix isn't just movie title. Or how parabola and hyperbola differ. Basic understanding is fourth-grade arithmetic (mentioned in the article) and this is absolutely not enough.
Sure one can code without learning math. And one can play in trash movies without learning acting. So much as I can apply a cast to someone's broken leg guided by google search result, but really should not unless we are in the middle of the zombie apocalypse. And I (and most people) should not sing in the opera even in the middle of the zombie apocalypse.