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Area, Perimeter of a Polyomino


Date: 09/03/97 at 00:55:36
From: Whitney Mans
Subject: Polyominos

How do you figure the area of a polyomino?  How do you figure the 
perimeter of a polynomino?  Thank you very much.


Date: 09/03/97 at 05:51:26
From: Doctor Mitteldorf
Subject: Re: Polyominos

Dear Whitney,

Polyominos are figures that you can make out of squares. You can put
three squares together to make a "triomino" or four to make a 
"tetromino"or five to make a "pentomino," and there are many more 
kinds of polyominos.

Just for example, it's easy to think of using squares that are 1 inch 
on each side.  Then the area of each square is 1 square inch. If you 
put 5 squares together to make a pentomino, then the area is 5 square 
inches. The area of a pentomino is just how many squares you've put 
together.

The perimeter is a little harder. You have to trace around the figure
you make, and count how many inches go around it. Think of an ant 
walking around the outside edge: how many inches would he walk to get 
all the way around to the place he started.

It's easy to see that with squares 1 inch on each side, all pentominos 
have an area of 5 square inches. Do they have the same perimeter, too?  
Try making a few pentomino shapes on paper, and count how many inches 
to go around them.

-Doctor Mitteldorf,  The Math Forum
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Associated Topics:
Elementary Geometry

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