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### Square Feet

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Date: 4/13/96 at 12:23:30
From: Anonymous
Subject: Cubic feet and square feet

I need to know how to compute square feet for some cabinets that I
have to move in a room.  I have computed it by the formula base X
height - i.e., the length of the base of one cabinet is 38 inches,
with 26 inches as the width.  The height is 94 inches.  Would I
multiply the length times the width and then multiply that figure
by the height to find out the square footage for one cabinet?
There are nine cabinets in all that I need to move.

What's the difference between this and computing the cubic feet
for the same nine cabinets and what would the cubic feet be?
```

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Date: 4/17/96 at 19:25:21
From: Doctor Aaron
Subject: Re: Cubic feet and square feet

Hello,

The basic difference between a square foot and a cubic foot is
that a square foot measures area, and a cubic foot measures
volume.  Think about a rectangle. It's flat so we don't have to
think about its height, and we can think of its area as the length
of one side times the length of the other side.

Now pretend that the rectangle is the bottom of one of your
cabinets.  The cabinet could have a very different volume
depending on its height.  In terms of your question, the square
footage of a cabinet isn't well defined unless you specify the
face of the cabinet that you're interested in.  If you want to
know how much floor space the cabinet will take up, we can talk
about the square footage (area) of the base of the cabinet being
equal to the length times the width of the base of the cabinet.
We could also multiply the square footage (area) of the base of a
cabinet by the height to get the cubic footage (volume) of the
whole cabinet.

I hope that this is helpful.

-Doctor Aaron,  The Math Forum

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Associated Topics:
Middle School Definitions
Middle School Higher-Dimensional Geometry
Middle School Terms/Units of Measurement
Middle School Two-Dimensional Geometry

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