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Default Simple math problem posted on the internet

January 18th, 2018, 06:19
some facebook blah blah had this math problem posted. My wife who has facebook asked me the answer which I said is 19.0000000001

9-3/1/3+1

now the internet and there was 10,000 answer to this problem including a a math professor from MIT said the answer was 1

if it was 9-(3/(1/3))+1 it would be but not as they posted it do you not agree?
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January 18th, 2018, 06:23
Sorry this is bugging me
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January 18th, 2018, 06:37
It depends on what the "order of operations" would be, that is a thing in math that tells you what order to do things in. I forget the details, but it would probably be able to help.
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January 18th, 2018, 06:41
So if i did 1\3= 0.33333333333
then 3\.33333333=9
9-9
plus 1
the answer is 1
okay no brackets needed then
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January 18th, 2018, 06:42
Maybe it has just been to long for me being in the MATH world that way.
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January 18th, 2018, 06:58
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January 18th, 2018, 10:10
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January 18th, 2018, 10:22
I made a simple program
Code:
answer = 9-3/1/3+1
answer = 9

edit: No fast replies so I guess I'll go again then

3/1= 3
3/3=1
= 9 -1+1 = 9
Last edited by SirJames; January 18th, 2018 at 10:35.
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January 18th, 2018, 10:52
The answer is to find whoever wrote the calculation like that, and give them detention.
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January 18th, 2018, 10:53
Yes, that depends on how you interprete 3/1/3, which given the character notation isn't entirely clear. Do we mean 3/(1/3) or (3/1)/3. First one gives 1, so the answer is 9, second gives 9 and the answer is 1.

If we wrote it by hand, we would write either

3
______
1
__
3

or

3
__
1
_____
3

But as it stands, at least in computing, we would follow the left to right rule, and the answer is 9.

BTW, using RPN the expression would be unambiguous: 3 1 3 // or 3 1/ 3/

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January 19th, 2018, 00:21
Thanks Pibs, you saved me the time and effort of explaining the 2 possible answers. I'm glad I read all the posts first!!
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January 19th, 2018, 01:34
in-fix, pre-fix, or post-fix?

@Corwin still uses a calculator that does pre-fix.
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January 19th, 2018, 02:03
I'm with pibbur and co.
At school (many years ago) we were taught to do brackets, then exponents, then multiplication and division from left to right, and then addition and subtraction from left to right. This has held for many moons of fixing other peoples' awful financial code.

Seems odd that an MIT prof would get a different answer?

Absent any brackets, that means this:
9-3/1/3+1

Effectively becomes this:
(9-((3/1)/3))+1
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January 19th, 2018, 14:44
What base is it in????
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January 19th, 2018, 21:16
Originally Posted by Hurls View Post
What base is it in????
Base 10. Or 16. 31. Any base >=10, actually, including the really huge ones. Like Graham's number, or Corwin's age.

pibbur who prefers base 42.
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Last edited by pibbur who; January 19th, 2018 at 21:37.
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January 19th, 2018, 23:13
The internets is filled with this problem

loading…


I tried it with Wolfram Alpha but it didn't give me a smart remark I was expecting.

https://www.wolframalpha.com/
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January 19th, 2018, 23:25
When written like that, the answer would be 1.
I’ve been taught that a division is to be performed before an addition or subtraction. And the order of operations is from left to right.
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January 19th, 2018, 23:30
I do all my arithmetic in BASECorwin. It keeps all my numbers to a single digit.
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January 20th, 2018, 00:01
You do remember, that Once Upon a Time (though not in a galaxy far, far away), I was a High School Maths teacher!!
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January 20th, 2018, 08:20
Ah, the good old days of slates!
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