New statistical formulas for assigning sex to fossils

The CENIEH researcher Adrián Pablos is co-author of a paper which offers a methodology for assigning the sex to fossils of Homo sapiens and opens up the possibility of applying it to species other than our own, as well as ...

Saving energy by taking a close look inside transistors

Researchers at Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU) have developed a simple yet accurate method for finding defects in the latest generation of silicon carbide transistors. This will speed up the process ...

Why is this line so long?

Warning: After reading this article, you will never again stand in a line without thinking about how to make your wait time shorter. And as an expert in operations management, I'm here to spread the word that sometimes a ...

Math describes how bubbles pop

Understanding the dynamics of bursting bubbles can provide critical insights for a range of fields from oceanography to atmospheric science, but the mechanisms that drive the final pop are complex and difficult to describe.

Forest carbon stocks have been overestimated for 50 years

Basic density is widely used to compute carbon storage by trees. A formula used to calculate basic wood density has recently been corrected. Researchers estimate that the error in the initial formula resulted in an overestimation ...

Technology extends shelf life of dairy exports

A suite of drying technology platforms developed by researchers at Monash University could help extend the shelf life of Australia's powdered dairy exports – including infant formula – while meeting stringent safety and ...

Indian sacred texts and the logic of computer ethics

The Indian sacred texts of the Vedas have been studied for millennia. But now, for the first time in history, computer scientists in Vienna analyse them by applying the methods of mathematical logic. This gives Sanskritists ...

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Formula

In mathematics, a formula (plural: formulae or formulas) is an entity constructed using the symbols and formation rules of a given logical language.

In science, a formula is a concise way of expressing information symbolically (as in a mathematical or chemical formula), or a general relationship between quantities. Colloquial use of the term in mathematics often refers to a similar construct.

Such formulae are the key to solving an equation with variables. For example, determining the volume of a sphere requires a significant amount of integral calculus; but, having done this once, mathematicians can produce a formula to describe the volume in terms of some other parameter (the radius for example). This particular formula is:

Having obtained this result, and knowing the radius of the sphere in question, we can quickly and easily determine its volume. Note that the quantities V, the volume, and r the radius are expressed as single letters. This convention, while less important in a relatively simple formula, means that mathematicians can more quickly manipulate larger and more complex formulae.

Expressions are distinct from formulae in that they cannot contain an equals sign; whereas formulae are comparable to sentences, expressions are more like phrases.

In a general context, formulae are applied to provide a mathematical solution for real world problems. Some may be general: F = ma, which is one expression of Newton's second law, is applicable to a wide range of physical situations. Other formulae may be specially created to solve a particular problem; for example, using the equation of a sine curve to model the movement of the tides in a bay. In all cases however, formulae form the basis for all calculations.

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