Multiplication (Encyclopedia of Science)
Multiplication is often described as repeated addition. For example, the product 3 4 is equal to the sum of three 4s: 4 + 4 + 4.
In talking about multiplication, several terms are used. In the expression 3 4, the entire expression, whether it is written as 3 4 or as 12, is called the product. In other words, the answer to a multiplication problem is the product. In the original expression, the numbers 3 and 4 are each called multipliers, factors, or terms. At one time, the words multiplicand and multiplier were used to indicate which number got multiplied (the multiplicand) and which number did the multiplying (the multiplier). That terminology has now fallen into disuse. Now the term multiplier applies to either number.
Multiplication is symbolized in three ways: with an as in 3 4; with a centered dot, as in 3 · 4; and by writing the numbers next to each other, as in 3(4), (3)(4), 5x, or (x + y)(x y).
Rules of multiplication for numbers other than wholer naturalumbers
Common fractions. The numerator of the product is the product of the numerators; the denominator of the product is the product of the denominators. For example, .
Decimals. Multiply the decimal fractions as if they were natural numbers. Place the decimal point in the product...
(The entire section is 472 words.)
Want to Read More?
Subscribe now to read the rest of this article. Plus get complete access to 30,000+ study guides!