Posted by T.Gracken on October 30, 2002 at 19:06:15:
In Reply to: order of operations posted by Joel on October 30, 2002 at 18:30:46:
: Just want to be sure...
: a^b^c is evaluated as (a^b)^c = a^(bc), correct?
this is one of those "sticky" situations. Like 'definitions'
I tend to look at this as (precisely) per order of operations and (reading left to right) since "a" has an exponent, we must determine the exponents value and its value is (b^c). This is easily argued as something else... which is easily argued as this... which is...
Many people see it exactly as you do.
So, unless grouping symbols are included with the original expression, it is one of those 'un-winnable' debates.
that is, parties discussing this expression must agree on (or accept) the notation if anything further is to be agreed upon.
personally, I have no problem either way; as long as I know what the other person interprets as.
...of course, there are (many) organizations (all of whom claim to be the most accepted) that will claim their decision is the correct one.
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