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 Math Central Quandaries & Queries
 Question from Jerome, a student: Factor: x^2+y^2

Hi Jerome,

If $x^2 + y^2$ were factorable then then $5^2 + 4^2$ would factor, but $5^2 + 4^2 = 25 + 16 = 41$ which is a prime and does not factor. Thus $x^2 + y^2$ is not factorable.

Penny

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