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Math Help - Can Wolfram Alpha be wrong?

  1. #1
    Newbie afterain71's Avatar
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    Can Wolfram Alpha be wrong?

    Hi!

    I've got a plain trigonometric equation.
    Can Wolfram Alpha be wrong?-msp25211a4596da750h0c4200006408if0811a5850h.gif
    π/2 can't be the answer, but Wolfram Alpha has a different opinion.
    How is it even possible?

    Thanks in advance.
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  2. #2
    MHF Contributor
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    Re: Can Wolfram Alpha be wrong?

    I agree: strictly speaking, π/2 is not a solution because tan(π/2) is undefined. Apparently, WolframAlpha simplifies the equation and in the process acquires spurious solutions. The same happens with tan(x)cos(x) = 1.
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  3. #3
    Forum Admin topsquark's Avatar
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    Re: Can Wolfram Alpha be wrong?

    Yes, WA can be wrong. I don't know the extent of it, but see here for a simple integral which it gets wrong. The solution, of course, should be log|x| + C, not log(x) + C.

    Always check your answers. Even when using a fancy "calculator" like WA.

    -Dan
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