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FritzDaCat 05-18-2014 02:43 PM

Keyboard shortcuts for math
Does anybody know of any keyboard shortcuts for math functions? Specifically, right now I am looking for a number "raised to the power of" function. For example, 5 to the 7th power. I've looked around a bit but I figured the smart folks here have already figured this out.
Thanks in advance!

MBP17•David 05-18-2014 03:19 PM

In many office type apps, like Pages, or Writer, Calc (OpenOffice), etc, etc it is called "Superscript" and in OO can be reached either via Character | Format ... Superscript, or again, in OO by ⇧⌘P - but if you use that, don't forget to cancel it.

I usually just type, say 57, then highlight 7 and click superscript button:

or, in Calc:

In Notes, you go: Format | Font | Baseline | Superscript

Not sure how to access the same function in other apps, and plain text ones might struggle to support it.

FritzDaCat 05-18-2014 05:02 PM

Thanks, David!
I definitely learned something from your answer but I can't make it work from Pages, for example, by this method.
I'm reviewing algebra after many years on the Khan Academy website and it occasionally requires answers in the "to the power of" format. I'm trying to find a way that A) types in the number in the correct format and B) I guess, actually numerically represents that number. If that makes any sense, lol.

MBP17•David 05-18-2014 05:38 PM

I'm afraid, I only have Pages on my iPhone / iPad, as I use OpenOffice in OS X (I moved to Mac from Linux) ...

Have you tried it in Notes? Apple software is excellent in following a uniformed approach to same tasks, so I would expect Pages to [hopefully] go through the same path: Format | Font | Baseline | Superscript ? :\

I'm sure someone will be able to advise on how to get superscript in Pages...

FritzDaCat 05-18-2014 05:47 PM

I'm thinking that my issue is not just the physical layout of the numbers (for example a 5 and a raised 7). It is also in the meaning of the numbers. For example, I can't type 6x7 to mean the equation for 42. Computers don't understand that in the context of exchanging information on a website. However, the computer understands 6*7 because it understands * to mean 'multiplied by.' So, I'm trying to figure out how it understands "to the power of." There has to be a trick that some coder or mathematician knows that we normal finger-counters don't ��

MBP17•David 05-18-2014 06:07 PM

Ah, it's making more sense to me now - if you want to calculate formulae, rather than just display them, you'd need an app, capable of working these out, like Calc in OpenOffice or Numbers, etc, etc. Writer (and I'm sure, Pages) can do simple sums, but not complex calculations.

In this case it is very simple:

However, if you expect a computer to simultaneously display and understand/calculate a formula, I'm afraid we're still quite a few years away from such capabilities being available to general public ;)

MBP17•David 05-18-2014 06:15 PM

Just a thought, and it's interpretation might depend on the website, but have you tried 5^7 ?

FritzDaCat 05-18-2014 06:18 PM

That's close but still not quite what I'm talking about.
But.... I've found it! It's basically a mathematical markup language. In the case of "to the power of", the correct keyboard entry for 5 'to the power of' 7 is 5^7. The computer understands that ASCII entry.
I'll post a larger table of these when I have more time to investigate.
Thanks for your help, David!

FritzDaCat 05-18-2014 06:19 PM


Originally Posted by MBP17•David (Post 1583535)
Just a thought, and it's interpretation might depend on the website, but have you tried 5^7 ?

lol, was typing that as you replied!

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