Mathematical Powers and how to type them

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by itchster, Aug 10, 2008.

  1. itchster macrumors member

    Jan 14, 2005
    Birmingham, UK

    Im typing up a math's assignment for well a math's course :p

    But I'm having trouble showing squared and cubed numbers properly in pages, you know the numbers with a little 2 (for squared numbers) or a little 3 (for cubed numbers) and so on.

    I was wondering if anybody knew how to type them properly or have I hit a dead end in this?


  2. itchster thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 14, 2005
    Birmingham, UK
    Right I've actualy found out what it is I wanted to do, so I thought I would post the answer here for umm future reference.

    What I wanted was to type in superscript to do this in pages its:

    Format > Font > Baseline > Superscript

    Hope that helps somebody else in the future!

  3. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

    Aug 13, 2006
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
  4. mogzieee macrumors 6502a

    Feb 8, 2008
    London, UK
    Another way to do it, and for any symbol, is to go to:

    System Preferences > International > Input Menu
    Check the "Character Palette" to "On"
    And also check "show input menu in menu bar" at the bottom

    A new menubar icon appears in the menubar, mine is a British flag, the flag i think changes depending on your location.

    Click on this menubar button and select "show character palette" and go select your symbol from a list of folders and lists.

    This works with every text field (eg Text Edit, Pages, Word, Keynote... even this Safari MR text field... as seen below)

  5. m1ss1ontomars macrumors 6502

    Oct 1, 2006
    There's no apostrophe in maths, just so you know. What kind of assignment are you doing that requires using Pages?
  6. SnowLeopard2008 macrumors 604


    Jul 4, 2008
    Silicon Valley
    Try watching the Apple Quick Tip of the Week podcasts. I remember they did something about special symbols and such. All podcasts are free, so yea...
  7. itchster thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 14, 2005
    Birmingham, UK
    ahh right silly me :eek:

    umm it does not require pages per se, its just that my draft scrips of my assignments tend to be well messy, so typing them up makes it easy to refer back to them, and easy for who ever is marking it :D

    And its just a basic maths refresher course from the Open University, I'm starting a more advanced one that will lead to a degree in september
  8. rdp5008 macrumors regular


    Jun 23, 2006
    if you take anymore math courses that require typing up assignments you should try learning LaTex using a program called TeXShop (or similar). It has a learning curve, but is great for math and producing large documents (ie: thesis).

    A side note, why do you folks over there say "for a math's course" and we "say for a math course"? I had a British roommate in college and he never had a good answer for me.
  9. m1ss1ontomars macrumors 6502

    Oct 1, 2006
    Personally, I think we Americans are just lazy. "Maths" is far harder to say than "math". The original word is "mathematics", so it actually makes somewhat more sense to say "maths".
  10. iMacmatician macrumors 601

    Jul 20, 2008
    You can use Grapher to type in textbook-style math expressions. Then copy and paste them into Pages. I prefer this method when the expression I want to enter is more than just a few powers and roots.

    Regular option keystrokes will deliver quite a few characters.

    Shift + Option + 9 = · (multiplication)
    Option + W = ∑
    Option + V = √ (superscript a number right before it for cube roots and higher roots)
    Option + B = ∫
    Option + 0 = º
    Shift + Option + 8 = °
    Option + / = ÷
    Option + = = ≠
    Shift + Option + = = ±
    Option + X = ≈
    Shift + Option + , = ≤
    Shift + Option + . = ≥
    Option + 5 = ∞
    Option + - = – (minus)
    Option + ; = …
    Option + D = ∂
    Option + J = ∆

    I find them easier than using the Character Palette (unless I need something not in the above).
  11. ChrisBrightwell macrumors 68020


    Apr 5, 2004
    Huntsville, AL
    Why not use carat notation?

    2^2, 2^3, 2^4, etc.
  12. iMacmatician macrumors 601

    Jul 20, 2008
    I at least consider it not as elegant as proper superscript notation. It's also harder to read than superscripts, if you know what I mean.
  13. itchster thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 14, 2005
    Birmingham, UK
    I considered that method but dismissed it because I'm not sure everybody would understand its meaning
  14. iMacmatician macrumors 601

    Jul 20, 2008
    Anybody whos used any scientific or graphing calculator* would understand it.

    Alternatively you could put a note: "'x^y' means x raised to the power of y."

    * Well, most of them (some use textbook notation too).
  15. MisterMe macrumors G4


    Jul 17, 2002
    Not necessarily. Many scientific calculators do not treat superscripts like BASIC program code. They handle them properly.
  16. iMacmatician macrumors 601

    Jul 20, 2008
    Never mind, I was thinking of the two-line display calculators. (In fact not all of them use "^," some use "yx" with x as a superscript.)
  17. Cromulent macrumors 603


    Oct 2, 2006
    The Land of Hope and Glory
    You really, really, REALLY want to learn to use Latex for proper maths papers. Trust me, the output looks great and it is actually pretty easy to use. It took me about 45 minutes to get a decent looking document together from scratch the first time I used it.

    Download here. You need the package called MacTeX-20071201.dmg.
  18. swizzle13 macrumors newbie

    May 4, 2010
    Thanks a lot guys really useful. just spent half an hour trying to figure it out myself. :)

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