hello.i have a weird problem. (-8) ^ (2/6) = ? my first instinct was to simplify the exponent, which yields (-8) ^ (1/3) = -2. this is the answer the calculator gives as well. but someone pointed out if you don't simplify that exponent, you have the sixth root of (-8^2), which would give you positive 2. they mentioned something about the symbolic proof of squares..... i always thought you would simplify first, but maybe i'm wrong? this is confusing.