4-sqrt(s)/(s-16)

s=16

i keep multiplying this by 4+sqrt(s) and keep coming up with -12/0

the book is telling me that it's -1/8... how is this...

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- Sep 23rd 2008, 10:45 AMNotEinsteinMultiplying by conjugate
4-sqrt(s)/(s-16)

s=16

i keep multiplying this by 4+sqrt(s) and keep coming up with -12/0

the book is telling me that it's -1/8... how is this... - Sep 23rd 2008, 10:47 AMMoo
- Sep 23rd 2008, 11:01 AMNotEinstein
- Sep 23rd 2008, 11:01 AMJameson
Please show your steps and then we can help you locate your mistake. (Wink)

- Sep 23rd 2008, 11:03 AMNotEinstein

0/0... :( - Sep 23rd 2008, 11:09 AMJameson
I fixed your Latex code. Take a look so you know how to write fractions now :)

Oh no! You changed it back to wrong.... sigh. When writing fractions in Latex, use \frac{numerator}{denominator}

I spotted your error. You don't need to plug in s=16 and get 0 in the numerator. 16-s and s-16 are only a negative sign factored out away from equal.

.

Now the 16-s cancels and you are left with - Sep 23rd 2008, 11:09 AM11rdc11

Ok I fixed your latex - Sep 23rd 2008, 11:17 AMNotEinstein
- Sep 23rd 2008, 11:21 AMJameson
I wouldn't call it "tossing in a negative".

Here, think about it. Let's say you have (a-b). Now if you factor out a -1 from both terms, what do you get? -1(-a+b) or -1(b-a) or -(b-a). If you distribute the -1 back through both terms you get your original sum.