anonymous
  • anonymous
Find the zeros of the function x^2 - x-4
Mathematics
katieb
  • katieb
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shadowfiend
  • shadowfiend
Do you know how to factor this equation?
anonymous
  • anonymous
Yes but my problem is, is that I can't think of anything that added toger is 1 and multi to get 4
shadowfiend
  • shadowfiend
Hm. Fair enough. So there are a couple of ways to approach this. Do you know the quadratic formula?

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anonymous
  • anonymous
yes -2 +- \[-b +_\sqrt{b^2 - 4ac} \over 2a\]
shadowfiend
  • shadowfiend
Right. Do you know what a, b, and c are in your equation?
anonymous
  • anonymous
yes a is 1x^2 b is 1x and c is 4
shadowfiend
  • shadowfiend
Close, a, b, and c are the coefficients -- so a is 1, b is -1, and c is -4. Remember that a minus sign is part of the coefficient :) Can you plug those in?
anonymous
  • anonymous
yeah I get \[1 \pm \sqrt{15} \over 2\]
shadowfiend
  • shadowfiend
Right-o. And there are your two zeros.
anonymous
  • anonymous
what are the two zeros?
shadowfiend
  • shadowfiend
The quadratic equation describes two results: \[x = \frac{1 + \sqrt{15}}{2}\] and \[x = \frac{1 - \sqrt{15}}{2}\] Those are the two zeros of the equation.
anonymous
  • anonymous
oh, ok thanks alot
shadowfiend
  • shadowfiend
No problem, glad to help :)
anonymous
  • anonymous
wouldn't this be 17 instead of 15?

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