The barrier on the -2 in the exponent is confusing me, the answer is clearly not 1. Whats the catch of this problem?
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Originally Posted by StefanMomcilovic The barrier on the -2 in the exponent is confusing me, the answer is clearly not 1. Whats the catch of this problem? what does the colon between the two expressions represent?
[QUOTE=skeeter;615276]what does the colon between the two expressions represent? division
note that $\displaystyle -2^{-2} = -\dfrac{1}{4}$ and $\displaystyle (-2)^{-2} = \dfrac{1}{4}$ $\displaystyle \displaystyle 81^{-\frac{1}{4}} \div 81^{\frac{1}{4}} = 81^{-\frac{1}{4} - \frac{1}{4}} = 81^{-\frac{1}{2}} = (3^4)^{-\frac{1}{2}} = 3^{-2}$
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