How do you translate into symbols: The difference between n and 14?

2 Answers

#|n-14|#

Dec 11, 2015

Answer:

I'd say #abs(n-14)#

Explanation:

It depends on how exactly you interpet the idea of "difference".

If you speak in a merely numeric sense, then the difference between two numbers #a# and #b# is simply #a-b#, and so the answer would be #n-14#

Anyway, in a more general sense, maybe the absolute value is more adequate, since it computes "how far" two numbers are from each other, giving always a positive result. It seems more logic, because it says that #a# is far from #b# exactly as much as #b# is far from #a#, while using the "standard" difference, you have that #a-b# and #b-a# have opposite signs.

So, I'd say that the most proper answer is #abs(n-14)#