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Calculus problem is a problem

  • #1

Homework Statement



The upper right-hand corner of a piece of paper, 12 in. by 8 in. is folded over to the bottom edge. How would you fold it so as to minimize the length of the fold? In other words, how would you choose x to minimize y?



Homework Equations


I know I need to use similar triangles and the Pythagorean Theorem (a^2+b^2=c^2) but I'm not sure of how to start the problem


The Attempt at a Solution

 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
1,425
1
You have to be more specif as for what you mean by the "length". There could be many interpretations.
 
  • #3
the length of the crease.
 
Last edited:
  • #4
1,425
1
Ok I get it. Well, say the hypotenuse of the triangle is y. The side along the bottom edge is x. The side along the vertical edge is z. Are you aware that

y + z = 12

???

:smile:
 
Last edited:
  • #5
oh okay. i get that.
 
  • #6
i actually think i have it now. Thank you very much for your help!
 

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