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169 items are filed under this topic.
Calculating the area (acreage) of a four sided lot 2007-07-18
From A property owner:
I have a real estate property and the lot size is something I need to find out. I know the lengths of the four sides, but it isn't a rectangle, it is an odd shape. How do I find the acreage?
Answered by Stephen La Rocque.
Mathematical ideas in everyday life 2017-11-08
From Ricita:
Mathematical ideas to solve various problems of our everyday life ,environment related problems.
Answered by Penny Nom.
Decimals,fractions and percentages 2014-04-11
From Frances:
Ask an expert to find out their real life usage of your topic... that is the question. meaning what is your real life usage of using decimals,fractions and percentages. This is all part of my math assignment to ask an expert real life usage... so please reply back as soon as possible
Answered by Penny Nom.
Conics 2014-02-01
From Kassidy:
Hey, I have searched through all the questions about conics and how people use them in the real world, but none of them were very specific on how they are applied and the process, why it's so important etc. I have a project due asking these questions and it's been very difficult finding the right answer, if you could name jobs, how they are use and specifically applied that would be greatly appreciated.
Answered by Penny Nom.
A quadratic with no real roots 2013-07-15
From Pranav:
If ax^2+bx-5=0 has no real roots. Then d sign of 1) a+b-5 2) (25a-5b-5)(4a+2b-5) will be what ??
Answered by Penny Nom.
If 4 cooks can bake 8 pies in 6 hours????? 2013-03-18
From Kenneth:

I want to determine which quantities are directly and inversely proportional in order to determine the answer for the following:.

If 4 cooks can bake 8 pies in 6 hours, 2 cooks can bake how many pies in 4 hours?

Answer: 2 2/3 pies

Can someone fully explain what I need to know in order to determine what is directly and inversely proportional in the example above?

I thank you for your reply.

Answered by Robert Dawson.
Practical uses of trigonometry 2012-11-11
From Michael:
Where can I find books or information on real life function of sine and cosine?
Answered by Penny Nom.
Properties of real numbers applied to subsets 2012-02-01
From Mark:
Hello - The questions that I have for you is do the properties of real numbers (such as the associative, commutative, identity, inverse, and distributive law) apply to ALL the subsets of real numbers? In other words, do all those properties work for the Natural Numbers? The Whole Numbers? And so on and so forth. I understand that they are all real numbers, but for instance: the identity is whenever you add zero to a number, you get that number back. But does that work with, say, with only the odd numbers? Zero isn't odd so can that property actually apply to JUST the odd numbers? Any consideration would be greatly appreciated!
Answered by Robert Dawson.
Extended real numbers 2011-12-12
From Justin:
Hi there, I was wondering does +infinity=+infinity in the extended real number system? Basically, I was wondering does +infinity=+infinity since -infinity and any extended real number (except +infinity) are less than +infinity?



Answered by Robert Dawson.
Real-life applications of trigonometry 2011-04-10
From Angela:
I am a teacher and I desire to show the students the real-life application of trigonometry. Of course, one application is to use a clinometer and find the heights of various things. However, I am trying to provide a real-life scenario which also answers the question "why" the height of the object needs to be found. Not being an engineer, I do not know the specifics examples, but I want my information to be accurate and my example to to be as real-life as possible. I mean, I can say that someone wants to know the height of a flagpole; however, I also want to answer the question "why" they want to know this. I would like to give an actual real-life scenario. Do you know of some? Thanks!
Answered by Penny Nom.
A fourth degree polynomial function with real coefficients 2010-10-30
From Ryan:
Question from Ryan, a student: What is the fourth degree polynomial function with real coefficients that has -1,1 and I as zeros and such that f(x)=160
Answered by Harley Weston.
A tunnel from Toronto to Montreal 2010-01-25
From Dave:
I want to make a tunnel from Toronto to Montreal (for example)

Something like this http://mathcentral.uregina.ca/QQ/database/QQ.09.09/h/grant1.html
My coordinates are 45.442455,-73.861340 (Montreal) and 43.442455, -79.861340 (Toronto)

I need to know how to find arc distance, chord distance and radius What websites can i find for this subject Google has many but they are useless (blah blah) websites

Answered by Chris Fisher and Robert Dawson.
A proof involving real numbers 2010-01-11
From Amper:
Let a,b is an element of real numbers, and suppose that for every x>0 we have a is lesser than or equal to b+x.
(a) Show that a is lesser than or equal to b.
(b) Show that it does not follow that a is lesser than b.
i'm feeling bad of having no idea with this, hope i you can help me. GRACIAS!!

Answered by Penny Nom.
The extended real numbers 2009-11-02
From Justin:
Hello there, I was wondering is the set of extended real numbers a closed set or an open set?


Answered by Robert Dawson.
Math in everyday life 2009-08-03
From Naveen:
Dear sir, We are advised to do a project on "Mathematical modeling to solve various problems of our everyday life/environmental related problems...... Can u plz help us by mailng some ideas, suggestion,reference to make my project successful.... Thanking you...... Waiting for your favourable reply......
Answered by Penny Nom.
The extended real number system 2009-06-30
From Justin:
Hi again, thanks a lot for answering my previous question! I was also just wondering again if the extended real number system has a potential or actual infinity because it includes positive infinity as a point that exists at the end of it?

All the Best,


Answered by Robert Dawson.
Integers and decimals in day to day life 2009-06-29
From mitichie:
can you tell use of integers and decimals in our day to day life.
Answered by Penny Nom.
The Pythagorean theorem 2009-06-24
From supreet:
What are some real-world applications of the Pythagorean theorem?
How are the Pythagorean theorem and the distance formula related?

Answered by Harley Weston.
Is one Infinity larger than another in the extended real number system? 2009-06-24
From Justin:
Hello there, I was wondering if one infinity is larger than another in the extended real number system (just like in the transfinite ordinals and cardinals with respect to infinite sets) or are all infinities the same size in the extended real number system? Thanks sooo much for answering my question! I greatly appreciate it!

All the Best,


Answered by Robert Dawson.
Real World Applications of Mathematical Skills 2009-06-08
From Kathy:
I am teaching a student who is on the life skills program and is at the stage 2 level for maths but is in year 9 (stage 3). I am looking for maths lessons that will help her in life. Like maths in shopping, maths in fashion, maths in the home etc. Your help in finding lesson plans is urgently needed.
Answered by Janice Cotcher.
How many times does the graph of y=2xsquared -2x + 3 intersect the x-axis? 2009-05-27
From Henry:
how many times does the graph of y=2xsquared -2x + 3 intersect the x-axis?
Answered by Penny Nom.
Rectangular prisms 2009-05-01
From deborah:
Could you please tell me some examples of different objects in the real world of rectangular prisms?
Answered by Harley Weston.
Why learn math? 2009-04-01
From Uno:
I got myself in a lot of trouble today. I got into an argument in school with my math teacher because while learning geometry I said that this was useless.
I don't understand why I need to learn algebra, geometry & trigonometry. I don't see how we use this in real life and it is almost like my teachers don't know either. They say I have to learn it because... I don't think that is a good enough answer. The only way I don't get suspended is if I can come up with real world applications of why we learn math.

I need help... I am already in deep trouble with my parents. Any resources on how learning a proof is used in real life?

Answered by Claude Tardif and Harley Weston.
6 golfers play threeball 2008-12-04
From Ian:
I have a group of 6 golfers wanting to play 3 rounds as 2x threeballs, but with different players each day. Is this possible? Can you provide some threeball combinations for this please?
Answered by Victoria West.
Decimals and fractions used in our daily lives 2008-12-04
From josh:
i have a projecct due friday and i need to know, how are decimals and fractions used in our daily lives. i am having trouble coming up with ideas. i need seven more that dont involve money or recipes. please help me.
Answered by Harley Weston.
What is so important about quadratics? 2008-11-29
From zoe:
what is so important about quadratics?
Answered by Harley Weston.
A cereal box that has a volume of 12000cm^3 2008-11-24
From William:
Hi, I have this math question that says construct a ceral box that has a volume of 12000cm3 and the surface area of the box has to be between 3200cm2 and 400cm2, I found some dimensions that are 20 by 20 by 30 and it works, but when I attempt to make the box, or make a net I would need this hugh piece of paper/cardboard, which I don't have, is there an easier way to find different dimenshions so I dont need a hugh piece of paper to create a net easily? Because i've tried trial and error but it has taken to long and I cant find anything,else, thats resonable.
Answered by Harley Weston.
Real and imaginary zeros 2008-11-12
From David:
Find all the real and imaginary zeros for each polynomial. Factor each polynomial. Leave factors with imaginary zeros in quadratic form.

h(x)= x^5 +2x^4 - 10x^3 -20x^2 +9x + 18

Answered by Harley Weston.
The positive real zeros of f(x) = x^4 + x^3 - 7x - 1 2008-06-06
From CiCi:
How many positive real zeros does the function f(x) = x4 + x3 - 7x - 1 have?
Answered by Janice Cotcher and Harley Weston.
Applications of trigonometry 2008-05-24
From Mohita:
I have got a project in the school and i am not getting anything about the topic. The topic is that we need to find the application of trigonometry on any one of the real life situations using 3-dimensional figures. I mean how can trigonometry can be used in real life situations like navigation, architecture, survey, astronomy etc.
Answered by Penny Nom.
An octagonal prism 2008-04-27
From Melanie:
My son is identifying geometric shapes in the real world? We are stuck on octagonal prism, rectangular prism and square prism. Can you help me out with some examples. Thanks
Answered by Penny Nom.
A fish tank in the shape of an irregular pentagon 2008-03-29
From richie:
i am building a fish tank. it is going to be an irregular pentagon. the sides are going to be

there will 3 right angles A, B, E

my question is how to figure out the degree of the angles that are not right angles (C,D)?

Answered by Chris Fisher.
A car tire full of concrete 2008-03-27
From robert:
I want to build a volleyball net support. I am using a car tire 24"odx16"id filled with concrete. how much will this weigh? thanks
Answered by Penny Nom.
The length of the ramp on a motorcycle trailer 2008-03-25
From Joshua:
I am currently building a motorcycle trailer. I am trying to figure out the length of the ramp so that the bikes don't scrap the trailer/ramp as they are loaded. This is the info I have: the motorcycle is 6" off the ground in the center, the point where the tires touch the ground are 80" apart, the trailer deck is 20" high. How do I figure the length of the ramp? Please show equation so I have for future reference with different measurements.
Answered by Stephen La Rocque and Harley Weston.
A hydraulic cylinder 2008-03-24
From james:
I am trying to adjust the placement of a hydraulic cylinder that raises a dump bed up from the frame of a truck. How long would the cylinder (height of a triangle) have to be to raise the bed to a 70 degree angle? The base from pivot to cylinder is 132.5 inches.
Answered by Stephen La Rocque.
Mathematics in cooking 2008-03-15
From Emily:
What forms of Mathematics are used in Cooking?
Answered by Harley Weston.
The volume of a cereal box 2008-03-03
From Lawson:
I have calculated the volume of a box of cereal whose dimensions are: Length - 19 cm
Width - 3 cm
Height - 27 cm

I need help with the follow question: If 2cm3 = 30 pieces of your cereal, how many pieces of cereal will fit in your box? What do I do the calculate?

Answered by Penny Nom.
A real life example of a decagon 2008-02-12
From Htet:
I have a math dictionary to complete by February 13, 2008, Wednesday, and I need to know what a real life example of a decagon can be. I need help on this!
Answered by Penny Nom.
Out of school applications of Pythagoras Theorem 2008-01-23
From Laura:
Hi, I am currently working on a math summative in which I have to choose a real life subject and relate it back to the material in my grade 12 math class. I find the history and discovery behind the Pythagorean Theorem and Identity very interesting, but I have yet to find a real-life application of the equations. Yes, I know they are used for finding distances, heights etc., but realistically, how many people actually use it in those situations? Very few. I was hoping for a new application. Is the pythagorean theorem (sin^2x + cos^2x = 1) even applicable? Thank you, Laura
Answered by Harley Weston.
Practical applications of sequences 2008-01-01
From carl:
can you give me examples of different kinds of practical applications of sequences?
Answered by Penny Nom.
An irregular octagon 2007-12-23
From Sheldon:
I am attempting to construct an irregular octagon picture frame out of bamboo. The bamboo is 1" in diameter and the opening should be 20" H X 16"W.
What measurements should be used?

Answered by Penny Nom.
Negative numbers 2007-12-14
From mannal:
what negative integers do we use in the real world? like -30 temperature?
Answered by Penny Nom.
Straight lines 2007-11-26
From Divyansh:
hello i am in eleventh class and am, preparing a project on straight lines i cant really find uses of straight lines and its equations in daily life i am also thankful to you in advance and am waiting for your answer eagerly because i need to submit my project only this week thanking you
Answered by Penny Nom.
Is there a practical use for radian measure? 2007-10-26
From Paula:
Is there a practical use for radian measure in any profession? Which professions might us radian as opposed to degree measure?
Answered by Harley Weston.
Number of real solutions 2007-10-05
From Sujith:
The no of real solutions of the equations 1+x+x^2+x^3 = x^4+x^5 is ?
Answered by Harley Weston.
Irrational functions 2007-10-01
From alicia:
i have a question about irrationals functions.
i have been using them quite some time now, but i wonder where they can be found in daily life?
i hope you can help me,

Answered by Harley Weston.
Applications of sequences and series 2007-08-27
From Trish:
I'm a grade 12 learner working on a math project based on sequences and series. I'd like to know the different types of sequences and series such as fibonacci, fourier, farey, etc.

I've already used the Fibonacci Sequence and Harmonic Series and need two more. The simpler the sequence or series type the better.

I'd also like to know in which non-mathematical areas use sequences and series and how. Areas such as engineering or science.

Answered by Penny Nom.
Where do you use trigonometry? 2007-08-21
From jenny:
where do you use trigonometry besides architecture and engineering?
Answered by Stephen La Rocque.
An irrigation ditch 2007-07-31
From Kevin:
I would like to know how many cubic yards of concrete I would need to fill a section of irrigation ditch that measures 12 inches on the bottom, 40 inches on top, 16 inches high and 20 feet long with a 18 inch diameter, 20 foot long culvert sitting in the ditch (to remain open). I am trying to build a roadway across the irrigation ditch. Thanks very much.
Answered by Penny Nom.
Building a garage 2007-07-29
From charles:
I want to build a garage that is 24 feet 4 inches wide by 50 feet long. can you please tell me what the length of one corner is to the other?
Answered by Penny Nom.
Pythagoras theorem in daily life 2007-07-17
From sana:
i would like to what are the 5 practical uses of the Pythagoras theorem in daily life??? its for a math project thanx a lot sana
Answered by Penny Nom.
The surface area of a fire hose 2007-05-26
From Vanessa:
Why do we need to find the surface area of a fire hose (cylinder).
Answered by Stephen La Rocque.
Parabolas in the real world 2007-05-18
From Katherine:
Hi, my name is Katherine, and my mean old math teacher just assigned us a test in which we have to write two examples of how parabolas are used in the real world, each one page single spaced, size 12!! I know you have already answered some questions like this, but I still don't understand the whole baseball thing, and any other way parabolas are used. And how I can write a whole page on it. But that's my problem, not yours, I just need help with a little explanation on how parabolas are actually used today. I know this might be kind of confusing for you, but imagine how it is for me!!
Answered by Stephen La Rocque.
Lot size / acreage (more than three sides) 2007-05-11
From Martha:
What is the lot size of the following dimensions equivalent to acre. 141.85 x 52.55 x 217.63 x 38.89 x 68.08
Answered by Penny Nom and Stephen La Rocque.
Uses of pi 2007-05-08
From Kari:
How is pi used in real life?
Answered by Penny Nom.
The grade of a shoulder 2007-04-28
From Robert:
I am building a road with a 1.2 meter shoulder. The plan calls fo a 6% shoulder grade. When I use my metric calculator I come up with a different answer when I multiply 3/4 of an inch by 1.2 meters and when I multiply 1.2 meters by .06%?
Answered by Penny Nom.
Fractions! Fractions! Fractions! 2007-04-16
From Maria:
Why are fractions important for:
1) The study of Mathematics
2) Real life

Answered by Haley Ess.
A wooden hexagonal pyramid 2007-04-12
From David:
Im trying to form a hexagonal pyramid out of plywood and need to know the height to the center point of the pyramid. I want to use standard 4x8 sheets of plywood and split them diagonally. Then with the resulting triangles combine them to form one triangle. Then i want to accumulate 6 of these triangle total and put together to form a hexagonal pyramid.
Answered by Stephen La Rocque.
An arc shaped groove into a peice of metal 2007-04-12
From daniel:
hello i work at an engineering workshop the other night i was asked to machine an arc shaped groove into a piece of metal the cord length was 6 mm and the height from the middle of the cord to the arc was 1mm i was hoping to find the diameter of the cutter needed to do the job and also the formula to work out how to find the diameter. i believe it is 10mm dia thankyou for your time and knowledge
Answered by Stephen La Rocque.
Yards of sand in a ton 2007-04-09
From Teresa:
how many yards of sand are in a ton and how many yards of limestone does it take to make a ton
Answered by Penny Nom.
A cabinet with an arched front 2007-04-09
From Joe:
I am building an arched front cabinet that is 71 inches wide, 12 inches deep at both ends and 16 inches deep at the center. To accurately build this cabinet I need to known the radius of the circle that would form that arch. Thanks, Joe
Answered by Penny Nom.
An arched opening for a large doorway 2007-04-08
From Richard:
I am trying to build an arched opening for a large doorway...I know the vertical sides of the opening to be 8'-9" from the floor to the lowest point of the arch on each side...I know it is 15 1/2" from the center horizontal point to the top of the arc...I know the vertical sides are 11'-11" apart...what I need to know is the radius to create the proper arc. Can you help?
Answered by Stephen La Rocque.
The area of a parcel of land 2007-04-03
From Ricky:
I need the attached land parcel (#0436) converted to acreage. This would be of great help to me. Thanks, Ricky
Answered by Penny Nom.
A "claw setting" for a gemstone 2007-03-30
From Stephanie:
I'm trying to make a cone out of a flat sheet of metal for a "claw setting" for a gemstone. The cone must be 8mm wide at the top and 11mm long tapering to a point. But because the prongs must be cut out of the top the cone should not start to taper for a length of 3mm from that top 8mm. The 3mm prong is then bent over the 8mm stone. That probably doesn't make enough sense. But I don't know how to explain it. If it helps a claw setting is the very common prong setting for engagement rings or earrings. Please help as soon as possible as this is a commissioned piece for someone and I'm running out of time. I don't remember any math really from high school so please make the instructions really easy to follow. Thank You!!
Answered by Penny Nom.
The volume of a hopper 2007-03-23
From amitesh:
Let me know how to calculate the tonnage of hopper / bins / chutes of different sizes and dimensions.
Answered by Penny Nom.
Examples of algebra used in life 2007-03-21
From Arianna:
i need to find about 5 different examples of algebra used in life, and im not sure where to start. does anyone have any suggestions as to topics that i should choose for my project? thank you so much for all of your input. Arianna Leigh
Answered by Penny Nom.
The area of a property 2007-03-14
From Greg:
Hi my name is Greg. I have a piece of property I am trying to buy, but need to find out the square feet of it first. The four sides are unequal lengths and none at a right angle or parallel. Here are the measurement in feet. The base of the square is 29.12 feet in width.
The right side of the square is 44.33 feet high.
The top of the square is 28.80 feet in width.
The left side of the square is 46.20 feet high.
I have not done this math in ages and really need your help.

Answered by Harley Weston.
A fountain as a parabola 2007-03-08
From Emily:
I have to do a math project proving that something in real life is a parabola. I really need some help here because i don't know where to start. I want to do it on a fountain and prove it's a parabola but how do i do that? I would really appreciate it if you could help Emily
Answered by Stephen La Rocque.
Chords and arc lengths 2007-03-08
From Angela:
my dad, who is a welder, asked me a question pertaining to chords and points on an arc to which I cannot for the life of me find an answer or an equation. if you could help, it would be much appreciated. I am sending an attachment of the problem.
Answered by Stephen La Rocque.
A metal shroud for a outdoor fireplace 2007-03-06
From Arnold:
I am making a metal shroud for a outdoor fireplace, it is basically a lampshade type pattern,like the bottom of a cone.The top has to be 6 inches to fit the 6 inch stovepipe,and the bottom will be a 24 inch circle. the sides will be 18 inches in length.With the cost of the sheet metal,I can only afford to cut this out once,can you help me with the pattern ?
Answered by Penny Nom.
One acre of water, one foot deep 2007-03-05
From Jeff:
If you have one square acre of ground flooded with one foot of water and a pump that pumps 1000 gallons a minute how long would it take to drain the one acre of ground?
Answered by Penny Nom.
A long narrow cone 2007-03-04
From Amy:
I am an art student making a piece of jewelry out of a flat metal sheet. I'm trying to make a long narrow cone that's roughly 3 1/4" long and just slightly under 1" wide at the base. Since I'm no math wiz, I'm having a really hard time. Please help.
Answered by Penny Nom.
Slope 2007-03-02
From Lacey:
My algebra 2 class is researching graphing and slope and we would like to know how we use graphing and slope in everyday life. So if you could get back to me with some real world examples i would really appreciate it. Thanks for your help!
Answered by Steve La Rocque, Penny Nom and Sara Ulmer.
Circles 2007-02-22
From Erika:
I have a research paper due on real life uses of conic sections I've looked through all your conic topics and uses of them, but and i cant seem to find real life uses for circles. What are real life uses of circles?
Answered by Penny Nom.
Things that are shaped like a parabola 2007-02-14
From carra:
i can't find other examples of things that are shaped like a parabola except for bridges.............. Pls. help it is due tomorrow. thank you very much:)
Answered by Steve La Rocque, Penny Nom and Walter Whiteley.
An octagonal bird house 2007-01-13
From Soren:
I'm in the process of building a birdhouse that is an octagon (based on previous questions, looks like that's a familiar tune). The essential elements are known, but I get stuck when trying to determine the angle for the cuts that would be made to the thickness of the wood so that they all fit together when assembled. Each octagonal section is 7 inches in width and the peak of the roof will be 2 inches higher than the sides. My sense is that the angle cuts that need to be made to the 'height' of each piece of wood. By height I mean the thinnest part of the wood that is neither the length nor the width to use colloquial terms. While it's clear that a slight angle is needed, it would seem that the angle would necessarily change as the distance from the top of any one side to the peak changes. Please advise if more clarification is needed. The 2 inches is random and can be changed if more convenient. Whew!
Answered by Harley Weston.
Conic sections 2006-11-19
From Joyce:
My son has a project on conic sections. I need the following information on Parabola, Circle, ellipse,and hyperbola. He can't find the following information for each conic section: equations with explanations, four uses for each shape and Shape explanation.
Answered by Penny Nom.
Some applications of conic sections 2006-11-13
From Burt:
how are circles, ellipses, and hyperbolas used in everyday life
Answered by Penny Nom.
The real numbers with decimal representations consisting of all 1s. 2006-10-29
From Ivessa:
Determine if the following set is countable or uncountable : the real numbers with decimal representations consisting of all 1s.
Answered by Steve La Rocque and Walter Whiteley.
Ratios, proportions and medicine 2006-10-25
From Steven:
I don't understand why we need to learn about ratios and proportions because i want to become a doctor and i don't know if i'll ever use this type of math.
Answered by Penny Nom, Claude Tardif and Walter Whiteley.
How do we use fractions in every day life? 2006-10-19
From Tori:
I am doing fractions in class and we need to write a paper about them. So my question is:"how do we use fractions in every day life?"
Answered by Claude Tardif.
An octagonal room 2006-10-18
From Rick:
I am a cabinetmaker, and I have a client who has an octagonal room which he would like to be used as a walk-in closet. Each side of the octagon is 60" in length. Each wall section is to have a 24" deep cabinet installed on it. I am trying to figure out the width of each cabinet allowing for a 3" space between cabinets at the front corner.
Answered by Stephen La Rocque.
The focus of a parabola 2006-10-01
From Lily:
I have a mathematical assignment which includes applications of parabolas, hyperbolas and ellipses in the real world. I have been searching the internet and now I am ware that most of the applications of parabolas have a connection with what people call "the focus". However, I do not think I clearly understand what "the focus" of a parabola is. Would you please explain it to me?
Answered by Penny Nom.
I need to cut an octagon 2006-09-23
From Freddie:
I have a 48 inch square piece of wood that I need to cut into an octagon, help. What's an easy way to just measure and cut it.
Answered by Penny Nom.
Constructing a cone 2006-09-20
From Suresh:
i want to know the required size of plate for cone rolling,sizes are 2950mm is bottom dia,894 is top dia and 600 is height.I have already read u r answers but i little bit confused ,harely and sue have given useful answers but when i worked both method the required plate size is different. so i like to know which method is easy and correct.and also i like know whether it can be rolled without segment my rolling machine width is 1500.
Answered by Penny Nom.
The square footage of my property 2006-09-17
From Jack:
I have been trying to calculate the square footage of my property, without success. The measurements are below. Is there a simple formula that can be used based upon the outside parameters? Or, is there a simple way to calculate the square footage?
Answered by Stephen La Rocque and Penny Nom.
Designing a garage 2006-06-08
From A builder:
I'm currently designing a garage and came upon this interesting math problem. I've tried using various methods to solve it but have so far been unsuccessful. I've included a picture as its far easier to show you my question than explain it verbally. I realize it could be done by trial and error but i'm looking for a real solution.
Answered by Stephen La Rocque and Penny Nom.
The area of part of a circle 2006-05-29
From Larry:
need to find area of a circle between a given line (cord) to the circumference of the circle (see attachment). I often review blue prints of homes and many times have to know the area the home.
Answered by Stephen La Rocque and Penny Nom.
The volume of water in a sphere shaped water tower 2006-05-14
From Dan:
I work in the water industry, providing automatic controls for water systems. I was wondering if there was a formula for calculating the volume of water in a sphere shaped water tower? With the use of a pressure gauge we know the elevation of zero water {the bottom of sphere) and the overflow elev. (near the top of sphere) I would like to calculate how many gallons are at any elevation in between.
Answered by Stephen La Rocque.
Superimposing images 2006-03-30
From Laurie:
I am a parent and trying to find real world applications for the math strand that includes superimposing one item on another to determine identical. The Alberta strand is match size and shape of figures by superimposing one on top of the other. I am trying to find a way to put this into context for everyday life. Any ideas?
Answered by Penny Nom.
The area of a block of land 2006-03-26
From Ronald:

I have a building block of land with four unequal sides and only one right angle. I want to know the total area (in metres) and how the calculations were carried out.

The four sides are: Rear of property: 9.14 metres
left side: 36.9 metres
Right side: 32.61 Metres
front to street: 27.43 Metres

The front to street and right side constitute a right angle. but there are no others.

Answered by Penny Nom.
How do you find the angles in a triangle? 2006-01-27
From Keith:
How do you find the angles in a triangle if you know the lengths of the sides?
Answered by Chris Fisher and Penny Nom.
The angles in a hexagon 2006-01-22
From Linda:
My problem is in relation to wood and making a six sided object from it. On my saw, there is a place to set the angle to which you wish to cut. I cannot for the life of me, figure this out. I am starting with a piece of plywood (1/4" x 6" x 18") and need to know what the angle degree would be to make each of the sides match perfectly to form a hexagon. Trial and error just is not working. Can someone help me?
Answered by Penny Nom.
An irregular octagon 2006-01-20
From Robert:
I am building a poker table which is in the shape of an irregular octagon. I know the table measures 72 inches long and 48 inches wide with two parallel straight sides of equal length and six smaller sides of equal length ( three at each end of the table), what I don't know are the lengths of the any of the sides.
Answered by Harley Weston.
The area of an octagon 2006-01-03
From Nikki:
I want to figure out the square footage of an octagon. i have 8 panels that are 24" wide. Its for my dogs and i wanna know how much room they'll have.
Answered by Penny Nom.
A probability question which resulted from a game of Yahtzee 2005-12-31
From Robert:
Could someone please assist me with this probability question which resulted from a game of Yahtzee we were playing in Melbourne, Australia on our holidays.

The object on this turn was to throw a “large straight” which is 5 numbers in sequence from 5 dice numbered 1 – 6. A player initially throws all 5 dice and then selects those dice they want to throw again for a further two more times. In this instance the player on their first throw, threw a 1,2,3,4 and 6.

Question:- What is the respective probabilities of gaining a straight if they were to –

a) put back say the 6 and try and throw a 5 on the two further throws or…..
b) put back the 1 and 6 and try and throw a 1 and 5 or 5 and 6 on the two further throws bearing in mind that if one of the numbers was a 5 on the second throw they could hold that number and try for a 1 or 6 on the third throw.

I would be most appreciative if someone could assist in showing me how to calculate the probabilities particularly in the second instance (b).

Answered by Penny Nom.
Why do we bother learning pre-algebra and algebra 1? 2005-12-23
From Priya:
My students always ask "Why do we bother learning pre-algebra and algebra 1?" and I haven't found an answer to satisfy them yet. Can you help me? My students are from grade 9 to 11. I have tried giving them real life examples in each topic but it just feels like they are not satisfied!!!
Answered by Penny Nom.
Percentages in our daily life 2005-12-23
From Naina:
what are the uses of percentages in our daily life
Answered by Penny Nom.
A sheet metal cone 2005-12-05
From Laura:
I am an art student and in the process of making a cone out of sheet metal. I am unable to work out the template I need to produce my final cone. The dimensions I have are that the final cone will be 58mm high and will have a diameter of 102mm.
Answered by Penny Nom.
How is trigonometry applied to everyday life? 2005-12-03
From Yadira:
My question is how is trigonometry applied to everyday lives and functions. Ex: Builders use it but how and what are some examples of the trig-functions or formulas that they use?
Answered by Harley Weston.
Area of a lot 2005-12-03
From Ben:

How do you calculate the area of the following Lot?

I figured the following angles from the deed, which read:

N 86 degrees, 45 minutes E, for 322 feet.

S 10 degrees, 30 minutes W for 113 feet.

N 84 degrees, 30 minutes W for 368 feet.

N 50 degrees, 42 minutes E for 76 feet.

N 40 degrees, 40 minutes E for 15 feet.

There is a discrepancy between two surveyors and I'd like to figure out how to calculate the Area of such a shape.

Answered by Harley Weston.
Real Pay 2005-11-07
From Judy:
Is there a formula for computing "real pay"? Example - you are offered a position in your home town for $A, and another position in another town for $B. To work at $B job there would be so many hours in commute time involved (z), and a real daily commute cost (either train, bus, or auto mileage-wear, etc.) (x). How would you calculate the real pay of job $B in relation to job $A?
Answered by Claude Tardif.
The sides of an octagon 2005-11-02
From Royce:
I understand there is a simple calculation to determine the sides of an octagon when you know the distance across the parallel flats. something like .447 . can you help?
Answered by Penny Nom.
A slump cone 2005-10-27
From Wendy:
we are trying to make a slump cone (used to measure the slump in concrete). It has dimensions of 8" diameter on the bottom, 4" diameter hole on the top and a height of 12". Please help, it is getting frustrating.
Answered by Penny Nom.
How many cubic yards of dirt will be needed? 2005-10-27
From Mike:
We are filling in a hole left by the removal of an aboveground pool that was dug into the ground. The diameter is 25' across and the depth is 5'. I wondered how many cubic yards of dirt will be needed to fill this hole.
Answered by Penny Nom.
Labour efficiency 2005-08-23
From Rob:

The problem, on the surface, seems very simple and yet has created some controversy among a group of accountants. The problem itself has to do with labour efficiency rates and only involves two variables; standard working hours, and actual working hours. The difficulty lies in deriving an efficiency % from these two numbers.

Standard working hours or the targeted number of labour hours required to produce one widget, which I will represent as "s". Actual working hour or the actual number of labour hours require to produce one widget, which I will represent as "a". Labour efficiency I will represent with "E". The prevailing calculation with which I have a problem with is this:

s/a=E or if s=3000, and a=4000 then 3000/4000=75%

What bothers me about the calculation is that the standard hours get represented as a percentage of the actual hours and in my opinion changes the focus of the calculation from standard or target, where it should be, to the actual hours. I cannot define why, but this just seems inherently wrong to me.
The calculation that I use:

(1+((s-a)/s))=E or if s=3000, and a=4000 then (1+((3000-4000)/3000))=66.67%

My calculation is like a %change from standard calculation. However, there is something that also concerns me about my calculation.

If you substitute 100 for a and 50 for s, then you come to a quandary, because if you plug those numbers into the second equation the result is of course zero % efficient which doesn't sit right with me either. If you plug them into the first calculation you get 50% efficiency which doesn't really seem to work either, because you require 100% more hours to do the same work in this case. ???

Is the first calculation correct? Am I missing something altogether? Are both calculations off base?

Answered by Harley Weston.
Framing an arched wall 2005-08-12
From Mike:
I'm framing a building wall with a curved (arcing) top section. The radius of the section is 74'6" with a height above finish floor of 16'0". The horizontal run of the arced section is 23' 1 1/2" with a low height above finish floor of 12'4". If I start with a 16' stud at the high end how long are the subsequent studs if they are on 16" centers? Short of laying this out on a tennis court how can I work out the lengths of the studs?
Answered by Penny Nom.
Digging a hole for a pool 2005-06-08
From Debra:
I need to have dirt hauled away from my built in pool and the haulers are asking me how many yards of dirt there is. How would I figure that out? It is a 24 ft round pool and 3 inches of soil depth was dug out.
Answered by Penny.
An octagonal deck 2005-06-07
From Scott:
I want to build a octagonal deck. The wood I am using are cut in 8 foot lenghts. What I want to know is if the sides of the octagonal are 8 feet, what is the diameter. Also what are the angles of each side?
Answered by Penny Nom.
The volume of a hopper 2005-05-28
From Brian:
I would like to know the volume of this rectangular hopper. can you help
Answered by Penny Nom.
Jobs relating to the topics of ratios and proportions 2005-05-17
From Alexa:
What are some jobs relating to the topics of ratios and proportions other than architects and map makers?
Answered by Walter Whiteley.
A wishing well 2005-03-28
From Don:

I am building a wishing-well out of pieces of 2-by-4. I have included a picture of a miniature version of what I want. There are to be ten 2-by-4 pieces around the well and I want the circle around the outside of the structure to have a diameter of approximately 3 feet. How long to I cut the 2-by-4's to build the wishing-well.


Answered by Harley Weston.
The volume of a stock tank 2005-03-13
From Cord:
I am a farmer and I have recently installed a new stock tank which is 1650" in circumference and 10' deep. How many gallons of water will it hold?
Answered by Penny Nom.
A 6 sided (hexagonal) pyramid 2005-01-22
From Steve:
im trying to make a 6 sided (hexagon) pyramid, from 6 triangles of 12mm plywood, i know all the angles to cut apart from the one one to join all 6 triangles together. Rough measurements are outer edge (A) of each triangle is 13cm's, length of other 2 sides (B&C) of triangle outside to center is 14cm's with a height of the whole thing together about 6cm's.
Answered by Chris Fisher and Harley Weston.
Quadratics 2005-01-05
From Usman:
Hi, in my Grade 11 Functions math class we have been assigned the task of finding jobs and careers related to quadratics, I have done many searches but have been unsuccessful, then I saw your website and e-mailed. I also have to use an example of a math problem that the job uses, then solve it, this will all compile on bristol board for a presentation. I would greatly appreciate it if you could send me some links and references of sources that refer to this subject.
Answered by Harley Weston.
An elliptical table 2005-01-03
From Roger:
Want to make an elliptical table, say the long (major) axis is 4 feet, and the short (minor) axis is 3 feet. I can construct this figure, but I'm trying to figure out what the exact dimension of a rectangle within this ellipse will be if I make the table a drop leaf type where the drop dimensions are equal for each end of both the long and short axes. Intuitively, it looks like there is one and only one solution.
Answered by Penny Nom.
Construction of a cone 2004-11-20
From John:
I am a builder working on a project where I need to make a cone. It's a right circular cone with 15" base radius and slant angle of 30 degrees. I want to cut it out of flat sheet metal then bring the edges together to form the cone. Is this enough information?
Answered by Penny Nom.
Practical applications: parabolas and Pythagoras 2004-10-24
From Connie:
Provide two examples of real life objects that incorporate parabolic shapes. Explain the reason why the parabolic shape was used in each object.

I need at least one practical application of the Pythagorean Theorem.

Answered by Penny Nom.
Pythagoras in everyday life 2004-10-13
From Tiffany:
I was wondering if you have any real-life uses of the pythagorean theorem that you use in your everyday life.
Answered by Penny Nom.
The area of a lot 2004-09-29
From Deb:
I am trying to figure out how many square feet are in a piece of property. Start at Point A-then go 140 feet north-then 100 feet due east-then 300 feet at an angle southeast so that connecting to point A would be a straight line (right angle to first line north.)
Answered by Penny Nom.
3+4i abd |3+4i| 2004-06-17
From Sandy:
how would you do a question like |3+4i|? is that different than just doing 3+4i?
Answered by Penny Nom.
Pi 2004-05-10
From Kim:
I'm a 7th grader at Lakeside Middle School. And I was wondering if you can answer a question for me for my math project. I'm doing a project on pi, and my teacher said to ask an expert like you to ask about how you would use the subject, pi, in real life usage. How would you use pi in real life usage?
Answered by Penny Nom.
A stained glass window 2004-03-29
From Kay:
I'm doing a stain glass project and it's on a 4 foot across octagonal window...and I'm trying to set up the pattern and I don't know how long the sides are!
Answered by Penny Nom.
Volume of a fuel tank 2004-03-01
From Mike:
I have a fuel ank for my big truck that has a radius of 24inches and a length of 65 inches. I am trying to compute the volume of fuel in the tank. I tried pie x the radius squared times the length but no usable results. Can you help me please?
Answered by Penny Nom.
Bundles of asphalt shingles 2004-01-24
From Larry:
According to my study material 4:12 multiplying factor for shingles is 1.054. The question reads as follows: A building with a floor plan of 3350 sq. ft. and a roof slope of 4:12 will require _______ bundles of standard asphalt shingles.
Answered by Harley Weston.
Cubic yards in a concrete wall 2004-01-18
From Danny:
I am studing for my contractors exam. I am haveing truble with a few questions. I have the answer to the problems but I dont know how to get them my self.
please help

How many cu. Yds. Of concrete are in a wall that is 150' long and 8'4" high an d 8' thick

Answered by Penny Nom.
Inequalities 2004-01-08
From Michael:
How do you use inequalities in your job and in your everyday life?
Answered by Penny Nom.
Ratios and proportions 2003-12-31
From Frank:
I would like to know how you use 'ratios and proportions' in everyday life.
Answered by Penny Nom.
Factoring in 2003-12-16
From Priscilla:
How can you use solving by factoring in real life applications?
Answered by Harley Weston.
Applications of logarithms 2003-09-16
From A student:
I have a project due in my algebra two class dealing with logs and where they are used in life, but I am having trouble finding websites that relate. So I would really appreciate it if you couldhelp me.
Answered by Penny Nom.
Slope 2003-07-20
From Brian:

You are placing a pipe 60 feet long at a slope of 1.5%. How would you figure the amount of drop from the inlet of the pipe tot he outlet of the pipe? and what is the answer .

If you are trying to keep a shoulder slope of a road between 3/4'' per foot and 11/2'' per foot . If the shoulder is 10 feet wide, how would you figure how much lower should the outside of the shoulder be than the edge of pavement and what is the answer ?

Answered by Penny Nom.
A geometry problem 2003-07-08
From Chris:
My name is Chris, I work for a custom fabricator company. I am needing a formula for the Height (H) shown in the attached picture. The picture shows dimensions for my current application. If you could please, assign variables to the dimensions.
Answered by Harley Weston.
Real numbers 2003-05-09
From Sirena:
what is a "real" number
Answered by Penny Nom.
Area of a trapezoid 2003-04-13
From A road builder:
My husband works with asphalt building roads. There are times when one end of the road will be (for example) 100ft wide the other end would be( for example) 200ft wide and he must figure the area in square feet. So far it has been a guessing game because he dosen't have the formula to figure the square feet.
Answered by Penny Nom.
Uses of conic sections 2003-04-01
From William:
My name is William and I am doing a research paper on conic sections for my 12th grade math class. Part of the project is to find two conic sections in our world today and explain what there purpose is. I really need help in this area because I've been searching the internet for where conic sections are used in our world today and I really can't find anything. If you can tell me specific building or a pyramid that contains conic sections that would be great. Or even something in the universe would be helpful.
Answered by Leeanne Boehm.
A triangle and a circle 2003-03-21
From Jynks:
We need a formula that we can use to figure this out for work. We aren't math wiz's or students. Basically we know 3 points in space of a triangle, we know the length of each side and the length of the line from apex to base line. Each point of the base line ends upon the circumference of a circle. IS three a way to work out the radius of that circle.
Answered by Penny Nom.
The origin of integers 2003-03-19
From Travis:
What are the real life usages of integers? Also what is the origin of integers?
Answered by Harley Weston.
A question on combinations 2003-03-06
From Jose:

I'm an architect student and have a question on combinations. I have a grid of 3 x 3, hence a total of 9 spaces. I have 3 elements to place in this grid.

How many possible ways are there of arranging this elements on this grid ? (order, orientation not important)

First putting the elements each in its own space and secondly allowing the elements at a given moment to "share" one space.

Since I got kind of obsessed with this I went ahead and graphically did all the combinations allowing "sharing", a grand total of 729. How could I have known this before hand ?

Answered by Penny Nom and Claude Tardif.
Excluded values 2003-02-22
From Josh:
Why do you think it is necessary to include the "excluded values" when you write your answers to rational expressions?
Answered by Penny Nom.
Cubic yards in a gravel pile 2003-01-10
From Ron:
I am looking to find a way to measure gravel piles to get yards. They are generaly not square.it would be like pouring sand out of a bag into a pile. they generaly are concave in dimension. can you help. I have attached a picture to show a small scale what I am working on is in much larger volume.
Answered by Harley Weston.
The area of my lot 2003-01-07
From Linda:
I have a lot that is 210 feet in the front, 240 feet in the back and the sides each measure 150 feet. How many square feet is this all together and how close to an acre is it?
Answered by Penny Nom.
Decimals in everyday life 2002-11-24
From Fritz:
How do you use decimals in your every day life?
Answered by Penny Nom.
A house's selling price 2002-11-05
From Tanisha:
Answered by Penny Nom.
Integers in real life 2002-10-15
From Rica:
What are the real life usages of integers?
Answered by Peny Nom.
Subsets of the Real Number System 2002-09-07
From Christine:
In looking for a French equivalent of the word "integer", I found that the word seems not to actually exist in French, and that Canadian schools use the term "natural number" to describe what we have been trained to call "whole numbers," while using the term "whole number" to describe what we have been trained to call "integers."
Answered by Claude Tardif.
a+b=10 and ab=40 2002-04-27
From April:
What two numbers add to ten and multiply to forty?

(a+b=10, a*b=40)

I think the answer includes radicals and/or imaginary numbers.

Answered by Penny Nom.
Parabolas 2002-02-03
From Kuang:
-Who is credited for working with or studying the Parabola?

-What is a conic section?

-What does a parabola look like?

-How is a parabola formed?

-Where and how are parabolas used today in the real world?

Answered by Harley Weston.
The size of a lot 2002-01-26
From Claudia:
I own a piece of property that I need to know the square feet for assessment purposes. The figure they came up with is wrong. They measured from one point to another and halved the sums but that means I own the cul de sac and we don't. My lot is 55 feet wide and one side is 108.96 feet and the other side is 146.04 that extends all the way to a circle. The front of the lot on the cul de sac is stated on the survey like this. 78.21 feet where R=40 feet. This large arc is taken off the size of our land. How many square feet is our lot.
Answered by Harley Weston.
Integers 2001-12-02
From Alison:
How do you use integers in your everday life?
Answered by Harley Weston.
Ratios and proportions 2001-11-26
From Adam:
I am doing a project where I come to this website and ask a math expert about a certain topic. My topic is ratios and proportions. Can you please tell me what your job is and how you use ratio's and proportions in your job. Can you also please explain what ratios and proportions are.
Answered by Harley Weston.
A 3 dimensional 5 pointed star 2001-11-08
From Kent:
I am looking for a formula that will give me a layout for a 3 dimensional 5 pointed star. I want to form it out of sheet metal, using 5 polygons and soldering them at the apex. Can you please help me with this? I would like to be able to give the formula the height of the star from the bottom two points to the top point and also how deep the star is. Thank you very much!
Answered by Judi McDonald.
Ratio and proportion 2001-10-10
From Steve:
Where would you use a proportion and/or a ratio in a real life job or problem.
Answered by Leeanne Boehm and Walter Whiteley.
Percentage in our daily lives 2001-10-08
From Natasha:
What are the uses of percentage in our daily lives?
Answered by Leeanne Boehm.
Quadratics 2001-05-16
From John:
I am in the final stages of a math project and I need to interview an expert for the last part. Please try to answer at least a few of these questions.
  1. How do you use quadratic equations in your everyday life?
  2. Do you find being a math expert very helpful in life?
  3. Is the quadratic equation useful to you?
  4. Why did you decide to become a math expert?
  5. What do you think is the most important function of the quadratic equation?

Answered by Harley Weston.
The law of cosines in the real world 2001-02-21
From Hope:
Do you have any examles and/or labs that show how the law of cosines is used in the real world?
Answered by Harley Weston.
Working on commission 2001-02-17
From Jay:
Ron the realtor is offered a job directly out of real-estate school. He has a choice as to which way he will receive his salary the first year.

Salary Plan 1: He would receive a base pay of $2000 per month plus a 3% commission on each sale.

Salary Plan 2: No base pay but a 6% commission on each sale.

Write an equation to determine when it would be better to switch from the first plan to the second plan. Give a one- or two-sentence answer that includes Ron`s sales in a month. Round to the nearest dollar, if necessary.

Answered by Leeanne Boehm and Penny Nom.
Polynomials and exponents 2001-01-15
From A student:
I am duing a project in math on polynomials and exponents. I need a real life usage of polynomials and exponents for my project.
Answered by Penny Nom.
8, 4, 2, 18, 1, 9 2001-01-11
From Neyra:
Place each number below in one of the blanks to create the most meaningful and realistic story possible.
Answered by Claude Tardif.
The pythagorean theorem in everyday life 2001-01-06
From Josh:
What are some ways that we use the pythagorean theorem in jobs, or even in everyday life?
Answered by Claude tardif.
Parabolas in life 2000-12-03
From Ashley:
I am a student and my teacher recently gave us the assignment of writing a portfolio on parabolas in life and finding examples, three to be in fact, only we have to go into detail about only one. We have been instructed to include such terms as: axis of symmetry, completing the square, parabola, quadratic formula, standard form (vertex form) and vertex. We also must include in our detailed example an equation of the parabola and very specific details, PLEASE HELP!
Answered by Harley Weston.
Bridges and parabolas 2000-11-18
From Lauren:
My name is Lauren, and Im a secondary school student in Ontario. For my gr11 advanced math class I have to find out how and why parabolics are used in arch bridges and write 3 paragraphs on it. People who cohse satelites and whatnot are lucky - I've found a ton of info, but for arch bridges there seems to be nothing.
Answered by Harley Weston.
Where will we use this in the real world? 2000-10-11
From Jane Ann Musgrove:
As a teacher of mathematics, I am always asked "Where will we use this in the real world?". I am seeking ideas/sites via the internet where students can find answers to this type of question. Can you help me?

To be more specific, right now I am interested in finding careers where the employees would use the concepts of "Radicals", "Matrices", and "Logarithms". This information will be used by students to make presentations to the class on their findings from internet searches.

Answered by Harley Weston.
The square root of -1 2000-05-19
From Gary:
i am not a student i am just some one that heard something and i can't be sure on the answer...my ? is what is the square root of -1? i think it is -1 but not sure can you let me know please thank you
Answered by Harley Weston.
Rationals, irrationals and integers 2000-03-14
From Erin McKeon:
Why does the letter J represent the set of integers, the letter Q represent a set of rational numbers and the letter P represent a set of irrational numbers? What do each of these letters stand for?
Answered by Harley Weston.
Complex Roots 2000-01-24
From Jess Rutherford:
How do I find the value of k when 5x2 + k = 3x and has complex roots ?
Answered by Penny Nom.
A roll of paper 2000-01-15
From Richard:
I have a roll of paper, wrapped around a corrugate core, whos diameter is 10.750 in. The outer diameter of the roll is approx. 60 in. The thickness of the paper is .014 in. I am trying to find out how much linear feet of paper is left on the roll, given only the diameter of paper remaining on the core.
Answered by Chris Fisher and Harley Weston.
Resources for real-world math activities 1999-03-26
From Kate O'Brien:
Where is there a collection of math acitivities or projects to use in high school Algebra I, Algebra II, or Trigonometry that tie concepts to real-world careers?
Answered by Jack LeSage.
What are fractals and are they of any practical use? 1996-06-26
From Ron Lewis:
What are fractals and are they of any practical use?
Answered by Chris Fisher.
An application of Pythagoras' theorem 1996-04-09
From Mike Jones:
We'd like to know what practical applications there may be for the Pythagorean theorem.
Answered by Penny Nom and Maxine Stinka.



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