Date: May 25, 1995 8:02 PM
Author: ToniU@aol.com
Subject: Re: Fwd- Puzzling Questions
ubj: Re: Fwd- Puzzling Questions

Date: Thu, May 25, 1995 9:25 AM EST

From: Patsy_Fagan@qmbridge.drake.edu

To: ToniU@aol.com (ToniU)

RE>Fwd: Puzzling Questions 5/25/95

Hi, I have an explanation for 0!=1 that makes much sense to me and to my

students.

Based on the permutation problem "How many different wall arrangements can

you make by placing 3 pictures in a row?" , the answer is 3!. To follow

that thinking is the question "How many different wall arrangements can you

make by placing 1 picture?", the answer is 1!. The number of different

wall arrangements you can make by hanging no pictures then is 0! or 1 -

hang no pictures. I hope this is helpful.

As to why m is used for slope, one explanation is that Rene Descartes was

French and the word for mountain is montagne, hence he used the first

letter of the word. Why the letter 'b' is used for y-intercept is still a

mystery to me.

Have a nice day!

6:07 EDT

Hi, everyone--

I have two puzzling questions that I desire to know:

1) Why is 0!= 1?

2) Why is slope designated by m and the y-intercept by b in the y=mx+b?

Can anyone answer these mysteries for me?

I thank you in advance for your knowledge and wisdom.

Beverly Anderson <baba@tenet.edu>