Message Boards Message Boards


Order of operations in Wolfram|Alpha?

Posted 1 month ago
3 Replies
0 Total Likes

The expression 30 ÷ 1/5 of 25 is resulting into 150 on Wolfram|Alpha. I think 'of' and multiplication are little different. Number on the left and number on the right of 'of' should be taken as if they are in bracket i.e. 30 ÷ (1/5 of 25). Although it can be seen in the picture that it is reading the input correctly, but still the result is showing as 150.

enter image description here

3 Replies
Posted 1 month ago


I love trying to figure out how to google interesting questions like this. But, I am not able to figure out how to google "precedence of of".

That said, I think reasonable people (and machines) can disagree on whether "of" and "multiplication" are the same or different.

Great question. It makes one think.

Posted 26 days ago

Thanks for replying Mike.

I think since 'of' conveys the meaning of 'some part of something' as in

'three fifth of fifty' or '25% of n',

it should be treated as a group and not as a common multiplication operation represented by X or *.

Posted 25 days ago


I think your reasoning is reasonable. But, I can see it from the other side.

That is why you will see me use parenthesis more often than technically needed. Sometimes my reasonable reasoning is not reality.

Have a great rest of your week.

Reply to this discussion
Community posts can be styled and formatted using the Markdown syntax.
Reply Preview
or Discard

Group Abstract Group Abstract