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The Answer to Facebook Math Question Is …

I posted the above on both the Mike and Tricia and KISS Facebook page the other day just for grins never thinking it would blow up like it did. The answers left in the comment section were many and varied, as were the reasons given for arriving at the number. And mostly incorrect. But if you answered “7” give yourself a hand. You’re a math wiz!

The trick is the order of operations; multiplication and division first, addition and subtraction second. So 6 – 1 x 0 + 2 / 2 means you do 1×0 and 2/2 first. That makes it 6-0+1, which equals 7. Or so I’m told. I suck at math.

The two most common wrong answers are 1 and 5. If you just do the equation from left to right, you get 1. 6-1=5 5×0=0. 0+2=2. 2/2=1. But that doesn’t take into account order of operations.

People get 5 if they learned order of operation through the PEMDAS acronym. PEMDAS is Parantheses-Exponents-Multiplication-Division-Addition-Subtraction. However, that’s not exactly right. Multiplication and division happen at the same time, not one after the other. Same with addition and subtraction. If you try to do multiplication, THEN division, then addition, THEN subtraction then it would go 6 – 0 + 1… then 6-1, so 5. But that’s wrong, since addition and subtraction are equals in the order of operations, you just do them left to right.

7 is the answer.

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