Addition, subtraction, multiplication and division; the founding fathers of one’s maths education.
For some, mathematics are simple – all it takes is the application of consistent formulas to solve problems. For others, they’re the devil incarnate – causing anxiety and confusion.
A recent tweet is sending the internet spiralling into the latter camp. Twitter user @pmjdoll posted a seemingly simply equation, asking folks to solve it.
Get your thinking caps on. Here it is:
The posed equation is: 8/2(2+2) = ?
It doesn’t look that complicated does it? Well, as it turns out, the web can’t seem to agree on a conclusive answer. Who’d have thought that maths isn’t that simple after all?
Have a look at people’s thoughts below:
i do parenthesis, multiplication, then division so i believe it’s 1
— em ♥︎ (@pjmdolI) July 28, 2019
8/8= ONE! Dammit! 😂😂
— LyteBryte (@LyteBryte3) July 31, 2019
Its 1. You have to do what's in the parentheses first (PEMDAS)
Seems like people who got 16 forgot the basic math
— ザック九十二 (@zp925) July 31, 2019
16 because PEMDAS, 2+2 = 4 and parts of PEMDAS are interchangeable I believe as long as you go left to right, so 8 divided by 2 is 4 then 4 x 4 = 16 👍
— Hermès 👡 (@AmHermesGod) July 29, 2019
So what is the answer, 16 or 1? Well, there’s a big reason for all the confusion: geography.
There are two predominant methods of solving simple equations. PEDMAS (Parenthesis, Exponents, Multiplication, Division, Addition, Subtraction) and BODMAS (Brackets, Orders, Division, Multiplication, Addition, Subtraction). The answer you get will rely heavily upon which method you were taught.
Some math gurus explain below:
since part of the world teaches PEMDAS and part teaches BODMAS algebra can be quite confusing at times pic.twitter.com/UaXSPMwvYJ
— Mark Bott (@questionablmark) July 30, 2019
You need to see the how bracket is created.
There can be two cases:
8 ÷ 2 x (2+2) = 8 ÷ 2 x 4 = 4 x 4 = 16
Case 2 (Given case):
8 ÷ 2(2+2) = 8 ÷ 2(4) = 8 ÷ 8 = 1
RULE is STEP-BY-STEP following of BODMAS (Bracket, Of, Divide, Multiply, Add, Subtract)
Hope it helps !
— Get Out Valverde (@fcb_banter) July 29, 2019
In PEMDAS multiplication and division take equal priority so you do whichever is first from left to right. Same for addition and subtraction. pic.twitter.com/1617gChUms
— George W. Kush (@supermaddd) July 29, 2019
8÷2(2×2) = 8÷2(4) = 8÷8 = 1
= Answer is 1.
Solved Via "BODMAS" Rule :
O( f )
M x ultiplication
— Anant (@HumourouslyMe) July 30, 2019
However, according to Twitter user @bstpeach, the problem is written in a way designed to stir confusion.
Check out their tweet:
Both 1 and 16 are correct answers because the notation of the equation is incorrect. Can everyone stfu now? https://t.co/N5SFpSyewH
— ᴋᴏᴏᴋᴀᴅᴏᴏᴋs (@bstpeach) July 30, 2019
The main lesson to takeaway from this equation: f*ck maths.
If you have a story you want to tell send it to UNILAD via [email protected]
After graduating from Glasgow Caledonian University with an NCTJ and BCTJ-accredited Multimedia Journalism degree, Cameron ventured into the world of print journalism at The National, while also working as a freelance film journalist on the side, becoming an accredited Rotten Tomatoes critic in the process. He’s now left his Scottish homelands and took up residence at UNILAD as a journalist.