Can anyone show an example of how algebra can be used in real life? Thank you.
To maximise profits and minimise expenses, using resources in the most cost-effective way.
Any time you work with a system where you will be changing the amounts you are actually working with Algebra.
One of the best examples is in Linear programming, where, by considering all the resources and constraints,a business man/farmer/engineer can maximise his profits and minimise his costs.
While these can be worked out without algebra, it becomes a tedious trial and error method, which might miss the best combination.
For example: A transport company might have a small SUV and a large truck.
The SUV is cheaper to buy, uses less fuel, is cheaper to insure and run, but can only carry small loads. This makes it ideal to use if a few boxes have to transported.
A truck is expensive to buy, uses more fuel, is expensive to insure and run and drivers require a special license to drive it. However, it can carry large loads.
Using algebra the owner can determine at which point it becomes more cost effective to use the truck once, rather than the SUV many times.
Similarly in a construction company, you can use algebra to determine the optimum number of workers to get a project completed in the most cost effective time, with the correct number of employees.
A farmer can use algebra to determine how to make the best use of fencing wire to use the smallest amount of fencing for a maximum area of land.