Hello,
Recently I have encountered a problem in which I was to figure out how many seconds I was in class each week. My class is 0.833 hours long and we meet three times a week. I came up with 8,996.4 seconds. I need to round this to three significant figures because there are 3 in the information provided in the question (correct?) but everything rounds up and I would have 9,000...which is not 3 significant figures. Help please?
Hello, Phillipians314!
Recently I have encountered a problem in which
I was to figure out how many seconds I was in class each week.
My class is 0.833 hours long ?? and we meet three times a week.
I came up with 8,996.4 seconds.
I need to round this to three significant figures
because there are 3 in the information provided in the question (correct?).
But everything rounds up and I would have 9,000 ... which is not 3 significant figures.
Help please.
First of all, why did you write the length of your class as a fraction of an hour?
. . And then try to convert hours into seconds?
If your class is 50 minutes long,
. . then it is: . seconds per meeting.
With three meetings per week,
. . you spend: seconds per week.
The answer is accurate to three significant figures: .9000
I'm going to jump into this and say that the number of significant figures is ambiguous for "0"s. I won't say, like mr fantastic, that "trailing zeros are never significant" (emphasis mine) but certainly you need to write in order that the number of significant figures not be ambiguous.