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March 28, 2017

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having trouble factoring this particular problem

x^2-12x+36-49y2

factored by grouping

x(x-12) (7y-6) (7y+6)

the answer in the book has
(x-6+7y)(x-6-7y)

confused.

  • math - ,

    first, notice that the first three terms, x^2-12x+36, is a perfect square, and can be factored into (x-6)(x-6),, now rewriting the expression, it becomes:
    (x-6)^2 - 49y^2
    (x-6)^2 - (7y)^2
    this looks like difference of two squares,, let a = x-6 and b=7y, thus:
    a^2 - b^2
    (a-b)(a+b)
    (x-6-7y)(x-6+7y)

    so there,, :)

  • math - ,

    Gotta remember those damn steps. I immediately assumed it was four terms so I factor by grouping. I forgot that you first look for common factor, then squares etc.

    Thanks.

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