(-2)^2=(-2)(-2)=4
-2^2=-(2^2)=-4
Text book question is.....Do (-2) "squared" and -2 "squared" have the same value?
-I have written "squared" because can't see how to type in "2" in exponent form.-
The text book answer is "no" and list -4 and 4 for the individual answers.
Why is this so?
Yes, ^ means exponent. Plato is following "order of operations." Many learn this as PEDMAS or BODMAS. The in the absence of parenthesis the process of taking the exponent comes first, so -2^2 = -4. Plato inserted the parenthesis to make it clear that the exponent operation takes precedence in this expression.
-Dan
Thanks again Dan. I never did hear of bodmass but it kinda sound like another word for my (expanding) paunch!! Seriously now, the light has come on, -2^2 means negative.(stop) two x two. Which = 4 with the negative shoved in front(where it was anyway on the other side of the equals). And it does not mean, negative two, x two - which was how I was reading it at first. Now I can rest in piece.
Cheers
Remember- Smith and wesson beats four aces!!! - everytime.