Divide By Zero Just Try It

Can you divide a number by zero?  Answer: NO.  Now it’s easy to make the mistake of trying to divide a number by zero as sometimes we work with expressions that end up with a zero in the denominator.  However when this occurs ( zero as the denominator) we have a mathematical problem.  Let’s think about a few examples. 

First, let’s divide up $100 among 4 people- each person gets $25.  Now let’s divide $0 among 4 people- well because there is no money each person gets $0 dollars.  So we can divide zero by any number all day long and get zero each time.  However let’s consider dividing up $100 by 0 people- what would the answer be?  Well the question is really hard to imagine, it does not seem logical because there are no people that will get money.  Indeed when we divide by zero we get an “undefinable” situation.  Go get your calculator and divide 0 by 100.  You will see that 0/100 = 0.  Now plugin 100/0.  Did your calculator blow up?  You probably saw something like ERROR on your calculator screen because your calculator does not understand.  In mathematics there are more than a few special situations that we need to know how to handle- this is only one example.  So keep a close look out the next time a math situation does not make sense because it just might be one of those undefinable conditions that sneak up on us from time to time..

 

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