Meaning of a mathematical symbol?

In summary, there was a notation in the equation that I wasn't familiar with, but it looked like nonsense so I couldn't be sure.
  • #1
uart
Science Advisor
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Ok first a warning, this may be completely bogus as it was a symbol (or actually a notation) that I didn't recognize in a blackboard full of equations from a stupid "teen" movie. It may have been completely meaningless.

I was visiting a friend today and her daughter was playing a DVD of some dumb kids/teen movie. One thing caught my eye when they showed the "geeks" working at a blackboard full of infinite sum type identities. Curiosity got the better of me and I got here to pause it to so I could take a look and see if they were real identities or just gibberish (as equations in the background on blackboards in movies sometimes are).

Well I wasn't able to tell if they were gibberish or not because there was one bit of notation in all the equations that I'm not familiar with. As part of an infinite sum over "n" it had terms like,

[tex] \left( \frac{1}{2} \right)^3_n [/tex].

Does anyone recognize that or is it just nonsense?
 
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  • #2
[tex]\left( \frac{1}{2} \right)^3[/tex] could be a Legendre/Jacobi/Kronecker symbol, raised to the third power... but there's no reason for it to be cubed if there's just a 1 in the upper part, so combined with the subscript which I can't figure out, it's probably nothing.

Of course if not for the subscript it could also be (1/2)^3 = 1/8, but there's be no reason to do that in a loop.
 
  • #3
Thanks for the reply. Ok then it looks like the equations were just nonsense. They definitely looked like nonsense but I couldn't be sure since I didn't recognize that part of the notation. If I get a chance to see this DVD again I'll write down one of the "identies" in full and post it here for a laugh.
 
  • #4
Yeah, I'd like to see them. If they end up being real equations that I just didn't recognize we can have a laugh about that too. :uhh:
 

What does the symbol "x" mean in mathematics?

The symbol "x" is commonly used in mathematics to represent an unknown quantity or variable. It can also represent multiplication, depending on the context in which it is used.

What is the difference between "=" and "≠" in math?

The symbol "=" is used to indicate equality, meaning that the quantities or expressions on either side of the symbol are equivalent. On the other hand, the symbol "≠" is used to indicate inequality, meaning that the quantities or expressions on either side are not equivalent.

What does the summation symbol "Σ" mean?

The summation symbol "Σ" is used to indicate a sum or summing up of a series of numbers or expressions. It is often used in shorthand notation to represent a large number of terms in a series or sequence.

What does the symbol "√" mean in mathematics?

The symbol "√" is the radical sign and is used to represent square roots. It indicates the number that, when multiplied by itself, gives the radicand (the number under the radical symbol). For example, "√9" would be read as "the square root of 9" and its value would be 3.

What does "!" mean in factorial notation?

In mathematics, the exclamation point symbol "!" is used in factorial notation to represent the product of all positive integers less than or equal to a given number. For example, "5!" would be read as "five factorial" and its value would be 5 x 4 x 3 x 2 x 1 = 120.

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