Quote Originally Posted by enji333 View Post
then i'm not sure either.

The way i learned it was like this:

If A(0,4), and the circle equation X^2 + y^2 = 4 (^2 = squared, still havn't worked out how you do that yet??).

OA = 4 units.
OB = 2 units (radius of circle).

then by using pythagoras, AB^2 = 4^2 - 2^2

that's how I got taught to work out lengths of tangents.

can i apply that here somewhere?
Okay, I've realized that you were actually correct, I limited myself with my thinking. Due to what the problem appears to be asking, we only need to know the length of the tangent line, we do not need to know the point. And because it is a tangent line, it will have a 90 angle, so you were correct, we can use Pythagorean's theorem.

$\displaystyle L = \sqrt{4^2-2^2} = \sqrt{12}$

Then summing all our distances together (from my previous post), we get $\displaystyle L = 3\pi + 4\pi + \sqrt{12} = 7\pi + \sqrt{12}$ units.

This answer is assuming that our assessment of the problem is correct, and that I have not screwed up somewhere along the way