Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Dividing By Zero No Longer a Problem

I vividly recall, quite a few years ago now, when my maths teacher was explaining why dividing any value by 0 is undefined. It is meaningless, both mathematically and philosophically. Well, not for Google it seems. Using their calculator, the solution to such an operation is simply ... 0! Check it out for 1 / 0. Even the most rudimentary of calculators generate an error for such an operation, but no, not Google's programmers. What's a bit confusing, though, is that, for y = 1 / x, the value of y tends to infinity as x tends to 0 (see for instance here), but at x is 0, y suddenly rethinks its path and retreats back to 0. Must be one of those annoying non-Euclidean spaces or something.
Posted by Paulseph-John Farrugia at 24:40
Edited on: Wednesday, April 20, 2005 24:55