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Homework Help: What is the question looking for?

  1. Sep 26, 2008 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    A mouse starts at position (-2 m, 0.5 m), relative to a piece of cheese at the origin, and follows the path shown in the x-y graph below. Find the position vector of the mouse at point C and enter your answer in component form.



    2. Relevant equations
    The co-ordianates of point C are (3 m, -5.4m)


    3. The attempt at a solution
    Well I can't put a picture of the graph up on here, so if there is any information left out that the graph may contain please let me know.

    There are 2 answer slots, one for each component of the answer i guess. In my first attempt I entered 8.84m in the first slot and 38degrees in the second (obtained these from constructing a triangle and using trigonometry), but i was told my units must both be meters. So I put in the co-ordinates of the point itself and that is still wrong. Any help would be greatly appreciated
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 26, 2008 #2
    The first component is the x and the second is the y. I'm assuming the path the mouse took was a straight line so basically you compare the points in terms of change in x and change in y. How much did the mouse move in the x direction to get to point C? How much did the mouse move in the y direction to get to point C?

    I'm not 100% if this is correct (assumed a straight line) but this seems to be the way to approach the problem.
     
  4. Sep 26, 2008 #3
    change in x and change in y from where? the origin? Those would just be the co-ordinates of the point C, which i already entered, wouldnt they?
     
  5. Sep 26, 2008 #4
    No, it is the change from where the mouse orginally started (-2m, .5m).
     
  6. Sep 26, 2008 #5
    Oh okay thanks! I got it now.
     
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