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Math Help - Polynomial Functions

  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    Polynomial Functions

    Hi people, hoping you can help me understand polynomial functions.

    I have been given an example which is the following:

    p(x) = 2x^3 + 3x + 1

    Coefficient of x^3: 2 - I understand why this is a 2 because it is in front of x^3.
    Coefficient of x^2: 0 - I understand this as there is no x to the power of 2.
    Coefficient of x^1: 3 - I see why as 3 is in front of the single x.
    Coefficient of x^0: 1 - However, I do not see why this is?
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  2. #2
    Junior Member Youkla's Avatar
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    Re: Polynomial Functions

    Because x^0 = 1. So what you really have is

    p(x) = 2x^3 + 3x +1x^0 which is just p(x) = 2x^3 + 3x +1

    There is no need to actually state x^0 = 1 in the polynomial since it just equals 1.
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  3. #3
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    Re: Polynomial Functions

    Quote Originally Posted by Youkla View Post
    Because x^0 = 1. So what you really have is

    p(x) = 2x^3 + 3x +1x^0 which is just p(x) = 2x^3 + 3x +1

    There is no need to actually state x^0 = 1 in the polynomial since it just equals 1.
    So the 1 and the end of the expression is representing x^0
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  4. #4
    Junior Member Youkla's Avatar
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    Re: Polynomial Functions

    Quote Originally Posted by richtea9 View Post
    So the 1 and the end of the expression is representing a single X?
    The 1 at the end of the polynomial is just a constant. It's technically the coefficient of x^0, but like I said, we don't write x^0 in the actual polynomial itself since it just equals 1.
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