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# How does scientific notation differ from ordinary notation?

Wiki User

2014-10-30 10:01:06

Scientific notation uses short-hand for long numbers, writing the numbers in a standard form of a decimal number greater or equal to 1 and less than 10 multiplied by a power of 10, whereas ordinary notation just writes the number as one would every number. It helps to avoid errors when there could be a lot of zeros and makes the writing of numbers more compact.. As an example, 573,000,000,000,000 would be written as 5.73 x 10^14.

This also allows numbers to be rounded as necessary without a bunch of 0s. For example, 573,261,578,357,198 to three significant figures would be 573,000,000,000,000 which would be written as 5.73 x 10^14 (as above).

Wiki User

2014-10-30 10:01:06
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