Date: 7/22/96 at 11:2:34 From: tstorer Subject: Fractional Multiplication Dear Dr.Math, I am having trouble solving this problem: "Write the simplest fractional numeral for each of the following:" a) -3 . 1 -- -- = ? 4 2 I have several sums like this to do, and I don't understand the meaning of the dot between the two fractions. Can you help? Thanks, Erin Storer Shubenacadie, Nova Scotia
Date: 7/22/96 at 11:47:23 From: Doctor Paul Subject: Fractional Multiplication The dot means that you have to multiply the two numbers together. In higher math a dot is often used to replace the traditional 'x' as a symbol for multiplication because the variable x (a very common variable) and the symbol 'x' can get confusing when used in conjunction. The '*' symbol can also represent multiplication. Now...on to your problem: -3 1 -- . -- = ? 4 2 When multiplying fractions, just multiply across: (-3 x 1) -3 -------- = -- (4 x 2) 8 this is in lowest terms (it will not reduce) so that's your final answer. -Doctor Paul, The Math Forum Check out our web site! http://mathforum.org/dr.math/
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