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Math Help - Use of a subscript?

  1. #1
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    Use of a subscript?

    I don't get the point of it? So, I'm not sure so please correct me if I'm wrong (This is my question)

    Say I have, 3 crates of apples but I want to show how many per crate would I do?

    Like A (Apples) and a 3 below it slightly to show that I have 3 of those? and a five as the exponent to show that there are 3 crates with 5 apples in each?
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  2. #2
    Newbie Bill Zimmerly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nyx- View Post
    I don't get the point of it? So, I'm not sure so please correct me if I'm wrong (This is my question)

    Say I have, 3 crates of apples but I want to show how many per crate would I do?

    Like A (Apples) and a 3 below it slightly to show that I have 3 of those? and a five as the exponent to show that there are 3 crates with 5 apples in each?
    Subscripts are used for many purposes. (An example being the sequential nature of the elements of a set.)

    Sequence - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    You could represent your apple crate set like this...

    { 5_{1}, 7_{2}, 4_{3}}

    Which shows that crate #1 has 5 apples, crate #2 has 7, etc.
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  3. #3
    MHF Contributor
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    You technically could use subscripts like the above poster said. He was using them to fit the situation you proposed. However I find using subscripts in this way confusing and not a common use. Subscripts are very useful in numbering the order of things, but not so much with the quantity of things. If A represents an apple, then you can just use multiplication to show more than one, i.e. 2A, 10A, etc.

    My comments are about convention and how easy notation is to read by others.
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