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#1
December 28th, 2011, 01:33 AM
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Exponents and negative numbers..

So I'm pretty new and terrible at all this, but I figured seeing as I'm off to uni next year I would get better at Math...

So anyway, I'm reading these notes: http://tutorial.math.lamar.edu/Classes/Alg/Preliminaries.aspx

And I get most of it fine, except stuff like this:

(-10)^2 = 100, or (-2)^4 = 16

It confuses me. Maybe those notes weren't the best thing to start on? :S

But that's all I'm having trouble with, so far...

Any help would be great, and any books/notes that helped you when starting out would be great :3

Thank you very much.

#2
December 28th, 2011, 01:38 AM
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Quote:
 Originally Posted by breadbox So I'm pretty new and terrible at all this, but I figured seeing as I'm off to uni next year I would get better at Math... So anyway, I'm reading these notes: http://tutorial.math.lamar.edu/Classes/Alg/Preliminaries.aspx And I get most of it fine, except stuff like this: (-10)^2 = 100, or (-2)^4 = 16 It confuses me. Maybe those notes weren't the best thing to start on? :S But that's all I'm having trouble with, so far... Any help would be great, and any books/notes that helped you when starting out would be great :3 Thank you very much.

I mean, 10x10 is obviously 100, so does that mean ignore the subtraction even though it gets the power? If so, why do you ignore it?

#3
December 28th, 2011, 01:48 AM
 leszek31417
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You are kidding ...

ishnid disagrees: That's not very encouraging.

#4
December 28th, 2011, 02:47 AM
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Quote:
 Originally Posted by leszek31417 You are kidding ...

No...?

#5
December 28th, 2011, 02:55 AM
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Quote:

Because -10^2 is = -(10x10) isn't it? Which is -100, so I'm a little confused how it isn't a negative when the subtraction gets the power?

#6
December 28th, 2011, 02:59 AM
 kicken
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Quote:
 Originally Posted by breadbox except stuff like this: (-10)^2 = 100, or (-2)^4 = 16 It confuses me.

Unless I am mis-understanding what your saying, maybe this is what you need to read:
Multiplying Negatives
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#7
December 28th, 2011, 03:07 AM
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[QUOTE=kicken]Unless I am mis-understanding what your saying, maybe this is what you need to read:
[url=http://www.mathsisfun.com/mult

Yes thank you, this is what I needed.

Good thing I'm used to feeling like an idiot

#8
December 28th, 2011, 09:54 PM
 E-Oreo
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You should probably read this too:
order of operations

Quote:
 And I get most of it fine, except stuff like this: (-10)^2 = 100, or (-2)^4 = 16

Quote:
 Because -10^2 is = -(10x10) isn't it? Which is -100, so I'm a little confused how it isn't a negative when the subtraction gets the power?

-(10*10) does equal -100 and does equal -10^2; however, (-10)^2 is not the same value - the parenthesis have actual meaning. Because terms inside parenthesis have higher operator precedence than the exponent operator, the negative sign stays with the ten and you have -10*-10, which equals 100.
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#9
December 28th, 2011, 11:12 PM
 leszek31417
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Quote:
 Originally Posted by breadbox ... Good thing I'm used to feeling like ...

Don't !!!

It is OK to ask for explanations.

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