History Trivia: Operation Tiger

Fun fact: some performers believe that a bad dress rehearsal portends a great opening night. Not-so-fun fact: a war zone isn’t the best place to test this theory.

LanguageEnglish Language

Transcript

00:19

It’s small and unassuming…but it packs quite a punch.

00:23

Also referred to as an “exponent,” a power is a way of abbreviating very large numbers

00:29

in order to make them manageable. See that itty-bitty number, up and to the [Arrow points to a 3 exponent]

00:33

right of the other number? That guy’s the exponent.

00:37

An exponent can take an expression like 5 times 5 times 5 times 5, and express it this way:

00:45

We’re multiplying four 5’s together, so our exponent is a 4.

00:49

Or, as we might say, we are taking “5 to the fourth power.”

00:53

Sometimes you’ll have a bunch more numbers to multiply together than just four of ‘em.

00:57

But life’s too precious to waste it multiplying zillions of numbers the long way…hence the shortcut. [Lots of numbers as girl takes shortcut]

01:03

What about when the power is 1? Because our exponent is telling us that there

01:07

is only one seven, he doesn’t get multiplied by anything else.

01:10

So it’s the same as plain ol’ seven. When a power is zero, however, the number

01:15

is always equal to one. [Teacher drawing 7 to the power of 0]

01:18

Which…really is the loneliest number. We’ve been there. [Man sat waiting at a table]

01:22

Moving on…an exponent can also be negative.

01:26

In that case, you’ll need to take the reciprocal of the number…[Young boy performs a back flip]

01:29

…and then change the exponent to a positive number.

01:32

So, for example, if you’ve got 2 to the negative third power…

01:36

…it’s the same as the reciprocal of 2… one-half… to the third power.

01:41

½ times ½ times ½… is one-eighth.

01:45

So, as you can see, they may not look like much, but powers are quite…powerful. [Man working out in a gym]

01:50

They can abbreviate many big numbers…

01:53

…and they can reduce others to rubble.

01:56

Have fun on your power trip. Don't forget to send us a postcard. [People walking with luggage]