Microsoft Office Tutorials and References

In Depth Information

**Combining**

524,288. On the 64th day, the number would have been an astonishing

9,223,372,036,854,780,000, but the kingdom had run out of wheat at least a

couple of weeks earlier!

This “powerful” math is literally known as raising a number to a power. The

power,
in this case, means how many times a number is to be multiplied

by itself. The notation is typically seen as a superscript (2
3
for example).

Another common way of noting the use of a power is with the carat symbol:

2^3. The verbiage for this is
two to the third power.

In the chess example, 2 is raised to a higher power each day. Table 8-2 shows

the first ten days.

Table 8-2

The Power of Raising Numbers to a Power

Day

Power That 2

Is Raised To

Power

Notation

Basic Math Notation

Result

1

0

2
0

1

1

2

1

2
1

2

2

3

2

2
2

4

2
×
2

4

3

2
3

2
×
2
×
2

8

5

4

2
4

2
×
2
×
2
×
2

16

6

5

2
5

2
×
2
×
2
×
2
×
2

32

7

6

2
6

2
×
2
×
2
×
2
×
2
×
2

64

8

7

2
7

2
×
2
×
2
×
2
×
2
×
2
×
2

128

9

8

2
8

2
×
2
×
2
×
2
×
2
×
2
×
2
×
2

256

10

9

2
9

2
×
2
×
2
×
2
×
2
×
2
×
2
×
2
×
2

512

The concept is easy enough. Each time the power is incremented by 1, the

result doubles. Note that the first entry raises 2 to the 0 power. Isn’t that

strange? Well, not really. Any number raised to the 0 power = 1. Also note

that any number raised to the power of 1 equals the number itself.

Excel provides the POWER function, whose syntax follows:

=POWER(number, power)

Both the number and power arguments can be integer or real numbers, and

negative numbers are allowed.