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Math Help - Dividing Variables Question

  1. #1
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    Dividing Variables Question

    Hi everyone, I'm trying to get my math up to scratch and have been working through a couple of books on the subject. I'm a bit confused by something I've read and I was hoping to get a bit of insight to this problem:

    I'm told that:
    10a
    ---- = 2
    5a

    But I don't understand why it's not 2a instead of just 2.

    Thanks
    David
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  2. #2
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    Re: Dividing Variables Question

    Oh, I think I might have worked it out.
    Is it because if you divide something by itself then you'll always get 1.
    2 x 1 equals 2 anyway so it's not worth writing the 1?

    Thanks
    David
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  3. #3
    MHF Contributor Siron's Avatar
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    Re: Dividing Variables Question

    Yes, and also:
    \frac{10a}{5a}=2 \Leftrightarrow 10a=5a\cdot 2 which is true!

    You can also write (because it's a multiplication):
    \frac{10a}{5a}=\frac{10}{5}\cdot \frac{a}{a}=2\cdot 1=2
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  4. #4
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    Re: Dividing Variables Question

    Thanks for clearing that up!
    David
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  5. #5
    MHF Contributor Siron's Avatar
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    Re: Dividing Variables Question

    You're welcome!
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